Nel's New Day

August 24, 2012

A Look at the 2012 Republican Convention

The 2012 Republican convention is almost upon us, and the attendees are moving from upset to frantic. First they worried about Tropical Storm/Hurricane Isaac, which now seems to be heading a bit west and lessening, perhaps hitting Pensacola (FL) by early Wednesday. That’s lucky for convention-goers because the Tampa Bay Times Forum, location of the event, closes when winds go over 96 mph.

The next storm, Hurricane Todd, started last Sunday when Rep. Akin (R-MO), running for the Senate, dropped his bombshell about how raped women couldn’t get pregnant, eliminating the need for abortions because no “legitimate” rape could result in pregnancy. Usually a stupid comment like this causes problems for just the person dumb enough to say things like this, but it’s Akin’s close relationship to Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), Republican VP nominee, and their identical perspectives on abortion that caused tons of Republicans to call upon Akin to resign as a protective device for the Romney/Ryan campaign. It didn’t work. Akin is sticking around and causing lots more trouble.

Continuing with disasters, the three major television channels cut back—way back—on their convention coverage, one hour each night to be specific. They aren’t even going to the Republican convention on Monday, the first night, when Ann Romney was scheduled to speak. Republicans changed her speech to Tuesday so that she could get onto major television stations.

Other speakers chosen for the convention speak volumes without their even opening their mouths. Romney’s lame joke this afternoon about people knowing where he and Ann were born, trying to bring up the birther issue of whether the president’s mother was a citizen, leads in a description of seven birthers speaking at the convention: Donald Trump, the leader of the birther charge this past spring; Janine Turner, Northern Exposure star with her own conservative radio show; Sam Olens, Georgia AG; Rick Scott, Florida governor; Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), vice-chair of the House Republican Conference; Bobby Jindal, Louisiana governor; and Mike Huckabee, radio show performer. Huckabee’s relationship with the Republicans, however, is currently rather tenuous because of his vigorous support of Hurricane Todd.

Carlos Galindo, blogger for the Tucson (AZ) Citizen, has listed many of the other speakers with their attributes:

NJ Gov. Chris Christie insults voters and Republicans cheer.

AG (FL) Pam Bondi has diligently worked with Scott to purge liberal voters from the state list; ex-Gov. Jeb Bush (FL) supervised the appointment of his brother to president in 2000.

Texas senate nominee Rafael “Ted” Cruz thinks George Soros has a secret agenda get rid of golf courses.

African-American former Rep. Artur Genestre Davis (R-AL) spoke at the 2008 Democratic Convention and asked people to put President Obama in office.

Gov. Mary Fallin (OK) has led the charge against poor people.

Puerto Rico’s governor Luis Fortuño trashed then-candidate Obama to the Latino community four years ago.

Gov. Nimrata Randhawa (Nikki) Haley (SC), daughter of Sikh immigrants, support the state’s anti-immigration bill that uses a police force wearing special uniforms and using special emblems on their cars to hung down undocumented immigrants.

Gov. John Kasich (OH) talked about the need to “break the back of organized labor in the schools.”

Gov. Susana Martinez (NM) ran on a platform of taking away the drivers licenses of undocumented immigrants in her state and complained about U.S.-born children of undocumented immigrants when she thought her grandfather had illegally entered the country.

Sen. Paul Rand (KY) who opposes part of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

The choice of all the above speakers demonstrates large chunks of the GOP platform, the most conservative in decades. Major platform provisions, that purport to follow the Constitution, include the following:

No abortion in case cases of rape or incest and bans on drugs that might end pregnancy after conception. The question here is why they have problems with what Todd Akin said; they all agree.

Praise for “informed consent” laws that lie to pregnant women, waiting periods, and mandatory ultrasounds, including a “salute” for the law developed by Gov. Bob McDonnell (VA) who may have lost the VP spot after the country rose in anger about his “vaginal probe” (VP?) requirement.

Anti-LGBT language including the rejection of a proposal to endorse civil unions because Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council objected and the demand that the federal government back the Defense of Marriage Act denying marriage equality.

Replication of Arizona’s anti-immigration laws in which the state called for a border fence, a national E-Verify system to make it harder for undocumented workers to find employment, the end of in-state tuition for illegal immigrants, and an end to sanctuary cities.

A Federal Reserve audit to shut up Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX).

Removal of women in combat and repeal of the repeal of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” which would prevent gays and lesbians from openly serving in the military.

More guns in Washginton, D.C. because Perkins thinks that the expansion of gun rights will stop shootings and prevention of statehood for the city.

No new taxes except for war because any new taxes would have to be approved by a super-majority “with exceptions for only war and national emergencies.”

That’s what the convention-goers are doing. Meanwhile the Tampa law enforcement is also taking action.

Prisoners in Hillsborough County are sure to be delighted about the Republicans coming to town. Sheriff David Gee is emptying the 1700-bed Orient Road Jail to provide home for protesters who offend the law. Some prisoners will be relocated, but others will just be released. Gee says he won’t allow anything more than chanting and holding up signs. He might want to take note that Minneapolis (MN) police had to settle an excessive-force lawsuit after their treatment of protesters at the convention.

Tax-payers are paying $50 million for security at conventions.  Tampa’s expenditures include new police uniforms, $534,600; closed-circuit cameras, $2.3 million for closed-circuit cameras; upgraded police radios and multichargers, $5.9 million; a fleet of new vehicles, including an armored truck, about 200 Kona Race Light 7005 aluminum bicycles, and several Bobcat utility vehicles, more than $790,000. The city still has about $2.7 million left. Wonder what happened to the rest of the money?!

Some convention-goers may be disappointed. Tampa police has started a crackdown on prostitution at strip clubs, arresting 16 women at 12 strip clubs last week in “Operation Keep it Clean.” This will keep them busy during the convention so they won’t be available for minor crashes without injuries and minor crimes. Sounds like Hillsborough County may have some safety issues next week.

The second day of the convention may be a highlight with its “We built it” theme. Meant to embarrass President Obama for his speech that businesses are helped by the infrastructure, this approach may turn around and bite the Republicans. Their Tuesday celebration is at the Tampa Bay Times Forum—which was 62 percent built with tax-payer money.

More than that, the speaker touting “We built it,” meaning by herself, didn’t. Delaware Lt. Gov. candidate Sher Valenzuela, the “We built it” speaker, received millions of dollars in federal loans and contracts for her business, First State Manufacturing. She not only attributes her success in part to this outside assistance but also urges other small business owners to follow the same strategy of seeking government funds. Earlier this year, she gave a presentation in which she credited the use of “millions of dollars in secure government contracts” and, at the same presentation, encouraged other entrepreneurs to take advantage of public institutions and government investments to help their businesses get ahead.

She isn’t the only one making the “We built it” look bad. A featured speaker at a Paul Ryan event yesterday bragged about getting government funding to help build his business. Bain Capital, the business that is supposed to show Romney’s acumen, benefited from government funding, and Ryan’s family contracting business was built in large part from government contracts. Ryan Incorporated Central began in 1884 doing government-subsidized railroad construction, moved into building federal interstate highways, and helped build O’Hare Airport. Since 1996, the business has had at least 22 defense contract including one worth $5.6 million, a good reason for Ryan to increase defense spending. Looking at these situations, the Republicans are right: “We [the tax-payers] built it.”

Such is the Republican look on the country during the coming week.

1 Comment »

  1. This convention is the only thing the republicans have done for American homeowners: during the week of the convention law enforcement agencies in the area won’t have enough staff to evict people from their homes. Thanks, guys!


    Comment by lynchly — August 24, 2012 @ 11:47 PM | Reply

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