Blunt Not Sure He’s Going to GOP Convo
April 20, 2016

Missouri Republican Senator Roy Blunt has not decided whether or not to attend the GOP’s convention in Cleveland.

The Hill newspaper quotes Blunt says, ““I don’t have any idea. I usually don’t go for very long if I go. I am not a devoted attender of the conventions,” he said, noting he has a primary election in early August. “There’s going to be a lot going on.”

The Hill characterizes Blunt’s re-election campaign against Democratic Secretary of State Jason Kander as, “tougher than expected” .

The Hill reports the head of the Republican Senate Campaign Committee, Roger Wick, is advising vulnerable republicans to stay away from what could be a divided convention.

He recommends they attend more unifying events.

GOP Delegate Maneuvers in Kansas
April 7, 2016

Republican delegate maneuvering is underway in Kansas.
Many now expect the delegate-to-delegate battle to extend from here all the way to the floor of the GOP Convention in Cleveland in July.
An example of it took place recently at the Kansas Republican 3rd District Congressional Convention.
The 3rd District GOP had three delegate position available. Two were awarded to the Cruz campaign. The other went to the Marco Rubio operation.
Rubio has now dropped out the race.
Kansas GOP rules state national convention delegates are bound to a specific candidate until they are officially released by that campaign.
Rubio’s operation has not done that yet.
“There is an anticipation that Rubio will release those delegates at some point” said Kansas GOP Executive director Clay Barker.
“And under our rules, they become free agents. They can vote for whoever they want. That could become key in Kansas,” he added.
At the 3rd Congressional convention, State Representative Amanda Grosserode was the top vote getter.
That entitled to choose what delegate slot she wanted.
Grosserode picked the Rubio slot, even though she supports Ted Cruz for the nomination.
If Rubio releases his delegates, Grosserode could become an easy delegate pick up for the Cruz campaign in an political environment where every delegate counts.

KC Plans for GOP Convention Visit in June, KC Makes the Cut of 4 Finalists
May 22, 2014

Kansas City has made the list of finalists for the 2016 Republican National Convention.
The GOP site selection committee named KC, along with Cleveland, Dallas and Denver as finalists.
” Fantastic”, said Kansas City Mayor Sly James said when asked how it felt to make the cut.
“Once again, we have done what a lot of people said we couldn’t do,” James said, acknowledging the city’s bid was laughed at in Some Missouri GOP circles early on.
The GOP is expected to make a decision on a host city in late summer.
The city got the news Thursday afternoon. In the hour before the announcement, local convention boosters were glued to the computers, iPads and cell phones for the latest tidbits of news.
Mayor James left a City Council business session briefly to take a all for Site Selection Committee Chair Enid Micklsen. James said Mickelsen was calling with what she hoped was a bit of good news.
“These four cities stood out from the field from the start of this process and deserve a deeper look by the full committee,” Mickelsen said in a statement
The Mayor says he expects the RNC Will visit Kansas City and the other cities on the final list in June.
Kansas City’s central location and a modern arena, the Sprint Center, may be its biggest advantages.b
Included in that is the fact thatKansas City’s area. Doesn’t have a professional hockey or basketball team who could be using the facility when the GOP wants to start convention preparations.
Local convention boosters repeatedly stress Kansas City’s main concern, adequate hotel rooms, can be addressed.
“The first thing we did was give them a map showing them where all the hotel rooms are. And you’d been surprised, because more of them are going to be between downtown and the Plaza than you think”.
The Dallas bid is enhanced Texas’ reputation as a strong Republican state with lots of Republican contributors with deep pockets.
Denver successfully hosted the 2008 Democratic Convention. The state, however, is leaning Democratic recently. But many pundits no longer think a convention can tug a state into party’s column.
Cleveland’s advantage may be that Ohio is a critical swing state in modern presidential politics.

Politico: The Real Things to Remember from Tampa
August 31, 2012

Discarded confetti on Tampa convention floor


1. Romney opened up

In a speech that was heavier than normal on biography, the candidate accepted his nomination by talking about the “disappointment” of Obama’s tenure, the desperate need for corrective action this election, and the promises the president made that weren’t met.

The speech was largely an expanded version of his stump address, but it was well-written, and well-delivered.

Romney’s best line of the night claimed that the most excitement surrounding Obama came on the day people voted for him. He hit a recurring line among Republicans for the last year, that Obama is Jimmy Carter 2.0. He did touch on the Medicare issue, albeit in passing.

Topics he did not deal with — his Massachusetts record, the state-based health care plan he pushed through, the war in Afghanistan.

2. Rubio electrified.

Marco Rubio’s speech introducing Romney was among the best-received of the convention, as he delivered an emotional punch in a different way than Ryan did the night before. He told an aspirational story about his upbringing as a Cuban-American, speaking about his experience as deeply grounded in the American experience.

He described Romney as the best person to reclaim American exceptionalism, and framed much of the beginning of his speech as an attack on Obama. Other than the distraction of the red, lava lamp-like background behind Rubio, he was a success, and his speech played well on television.

3. The sum of the parts is not yet clear.

Romney has had more than his share of recent bad luck — the mess in the Missouri Senate race, a hurricane that delayed the start of the convention.

But there was also no core message or cohesive vision that emerged from the 2012 convention, beyond the staggered themes for each night.

Most of the speeches by governors were about themselves or their states, not about Romney.

The GOP was, until last night, on loan to Romney, and he is still not “of” it, although the excitement around his speech helped him a lot. How the three convention nights add up after the fact remains to be seen.

4. 2016 remains wide open.

Sure, Ryan will be seen as having a clear edge four years from now if Romney loses, if he avoids any damage to a brand that’s been bolstered by a number of conservative writers. But Ryan’s speech, while strong, is not going to enter the pantheon of enduring, memorable convention addresses.

None of the speeches given by the 2016 prospects has been either a barn-burner or something particularly grand, although both Rubio and Ryan fans will argue otherwise.

Scott Walker stood out the most from the crop of governors, and Nikki Haley and Susana Martinez were fine (Condoleezza Rice, frequently mentioned as a future candidate for something, though not president, was seen as one of the strongest speeches). Bobby Jindal missed his speech because of Hurricane Isaac, but he’s a real factor for 2016.

If Romney loses, this convention is the first audition of the 2016 Republican candidates, but it’s unclear if anyone secured much of an obvious, lasting advantage for when the gates open after this cycle.

5. The demographic gaps will likely persist.

Ann Romney gave a speech that was well-received, and that softened her husband’s image. The crowd applauded every time she was shown on screen. Condoleezza Rice brought the house down with her personal story of growing up in the segregated South. Ted Cruz was the face of the younger generation of Hispanic conservatives.

For all of the speeches, the convention doesn’t seem to have done much to address the demographic challenges facing Romney with key groups of voters — Hispanics, women and African-Americans. He will never win black voters against Obama, but he does need to win some of their support, especially in urban areas in swing states like Ohio.

6. Fiscal conservatism is the new conservatism.

For a few days ahead of the convention, it seemed like Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin was actually on the presidential ticket. Yet the staunch social conservatism that Akin represents was barely present for three days in Tampa.

Much was made about the language in the convention platform against abortion rights, as well as against gay marriage. But those topics were almost never mentioned in this week’s evening speeches.

Even Rick Santorum, the 1990s-era culture warrior, didn’t linger for long on social issues.

“New Democrats have, for the first time, a counterpart: in Tampa in 2012, the New Republican was born,” said Republican strategist Alex Castellanos.

It is, Castellanos added, “The organic Republican, the Republican who believes in growing an economy bottom-up, naturally and organically from the American people, not top-down, political and artificially, from Washington.”

7. Christie needs to take stock.

The New Jersey governor, faced with a string of tough headlines and comments about his keynote speech as overly self-promoting, had two choices in the aftermath — he could have shrugged it off and been stoic, or he could have pushed back, loudly.

He chose the latter. Christie spent much of Wednesday defending the speech, making clear at a variety of events how much the negative headlines bothered him.

He felt he was misunderstood, and that his intentions in the speech were portrayed unfairly. But instead of barreling ahead and focusing mostly on Romney and the task at hand, he (inadvertently) turned many of the interactions into a feedback machine about his own performance.

8. The Bush legacy was fleeting, but there.

Jeb Bush’s speech defending his brother’s legacy was one of the best of the convention’s final night, even as he talked about George W’s policies that have since become controversial among some Republican voters, like education reform.

The party’s troubled relationship with the Bush years, and the rise of the tea party in response to excessive government spending, is one of the enduring narratives of the 2012 cycle. The convention did little to clarify it, but did demonstrate that the vestiges of the Bush era aren’t being cast aside.

Mo. Delegates Like What They Hear from Romney
August 31, 2012

Missourinet’s Mike Lear worked hard at the GOP convention and filed this report from the Missouri delegation after the Mitt Romney speech:
Missouri’s GOP delegation thinks the party’s candidate for President sent the right messages to the right people when he accepted that nomination last night, at the National Convention.
Former Missouri House Speaker Catherine Hanaway thinks when Romney came out, he spoke to everyone he needed to.
“Who he spoke to was Americans. Immigrants were included, minorities were included, women were included, but at the bottom line he created this imagery of what it really feels like to be a parent. To do the hard work of raising your family … of sitting at home doing your homework with your kids … and he conjured those images that remind Americans of what our most core values are.”
Hanaway thinks Romney did a good job of making himself identifiable to the average American, answering ad campaigns that paint him as being out of touch.
“Quite honestly I think Mitt Romney without a hair out-of-place … perfectly tailored suit … sometimes looks a little too perfect and it makes it easy for the other side to say, ‘he’s kind of a robot, he isn’t like you,’ and when you see him … the video they showed before he went on where he puts a lightbulb in a socket that’s too small … just all those kinds of crazy things that are a part of your real family life, I think it was an important message for Americans to hear.”
Romney laid out a plan he says will create 12 million new jobs in five steps. One of those would be to make America energy independent by 2010.
Ballwin delegate Chris Howard says he doesn’t know if that’s attainable. “I would think it could be if you want to do it bad enough … I think the whole thing about this week was proving that he has the will to make a hard choice or set a goal and reach it. So if he’s really committed to reaching that goal, then I say yeah, it’s possible.”
Romney also reaffirmed his support for school choice, which Missouri Republicans agreed is where he would face the most resistance, from groups like the National Education Association. Howard says that position will appeal to African-Americans.
“We know from polling inside the party … African-Americans hugely value school choice because they know that a good education is their path to a better job. They’re pro-small business because they know that’s the best opportunity to build personal financial security, which is the real path to freedom. They are pro-life, they are pro traditional family.”
Missouri’s Republicans say they’ll be watching to see if the Democratic National Convention responds to the themes of the RNC, and say they expect the controversy surrounding comments made last week by Senate candidate Todd Akin will be heavily featured at the DNC next week