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The cancellation of the first night of the Republican National Convention marks the renewal of the rivalry between George W. Bush and John McCain. Since their bitter contest over the Republican nomination in 2000, they have taken years to make peace. But now McCain's last chance has collided with Bush's legacy.The current President has to "force himself" back on the convention schedule? Sounds like a united party to us...
Hurricane Gustav was "a big blessing," according to a source close to the McCain campaign. Facing a Katrina level wipeout--the landfall in St. Paul of both President Bush and Vice President Cheney--McCain felt trapped. How could he prevent the President and Vice President from appearing at the convention? Only an act of God could intervene. Suddenly, a hurricane whipped up in the Gulf and looked headed for New Orleans. Like a divinely inspired miracle, a storm to blow away Bush and Cheney had been conjured.
The McCain campaign and the Bush White House negotiated terms that unfolded as a script over the past several days, several sources told me. First, Bush announced he must oversee the preparations for dealing with the hurricane. He would not be able to attend the convention. Cheney, too, would drop out. In order that Bush and Cheney not seem to have been humiliated, McCain cancelled the entire proceedings for the first evening.
Almost certainly, Bush had to cancel his planned speech while Gustav loomed. But the sources say he didn't like the idea and felt pushed. Bush is described by sources as "furious" at McCain for being deprived of his last appearance before his party, which nominated him twice, as a sitting president. He believes he is being treated disrespectfully.
...Once the hurricane passed, Bush asserted his primacy as president and forced his way back on the schedule to deliver a satellite speech to the convention. - Huffington Post