VERY Busy day today – sorry for how late this is getting posted! With the convention in full gear, we didn’t have many moments to spare…
We opened up with another delegation breakfast, this one a joint deal with New Hampshire. It was an opportunity for the McCain campaign to thank the two states that gave him early primary victories.
We heard from the Secretary of Commerce, then a former POW who had been in the Hanoi Hilton with Senator McCain.
After remarks from Senator Lindsey Graham, Cindy McCain addressed the breakfast, as well as America’s Mayor Rudy Giuliani. Unfortunately the video files are getting fought by YouTube and Blip… hopefully I’ll have those up soon.
After getting some of our marching orders for the day, a few of us headed over to a surprising symposium on education involving Speaker Newt Gingrich, MN Governor Tim Pawlenty, and … the Rev. Al Sharpton! Yes, a Republican audience gave Al Sharpton two standing ovations! Shocking stuff, I tell ya… The crux of the argument is choosing children over bureaucrats – including merit pay for teachers and more market based reforms (school choice, anyone?) American Solutions has more information and the video here.
Then it was off to lunch with the delegation – and two very special guests, the Ambassadors from India and New Zealand. Congressman Joe Wilson made some remarks on the importance of US-India relations, and emphasized the SC ties with India. And the food was awesome…
Then we headed over to another restaurant in town (the restaurant row in downtown Minneapolis is called Nicolette Mall — and it’s truly impressive…) for a reception honoring Senate Conservatives, especially Senator Jim Demint. It was great to see the Senator there as well as Governor Sanford. Because of scheduling, this was just a quick drop by before we boarded buses to cross the Mighty Mississippi for St. Paul.
As for the first full night… the video clips were amazing, especially the ones narrated by Robert Duvall and Gary Sinise.
I got to the floor for Fred’s speech… and loved every minute of it. Fred was as good as I’ve seen him all year, perhaps more comfortable singing the praises of others than he was himself during the campaign.
Then it was off to Senator Demint’s birthday party…