Sunday, August 31, 2008

Cranky media lands in St. Paul

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We've long expected the media arriving in St. Paul to be tired and grumpy, and we were right:

D.C.-based Hearst News Service reporter Jennifer Dlouhy was standing on the 8th floor of the Mill City Museum at a pre-convention media party last night, overlooking the Mississippi River in downtown Minneapolis. She said that compared to Denver, where the Democrats just wrapped up their convention, "It’s far better food, a far more beautiful backdrop."

"But,” she said of the reporters, “they’re not having as much fun. Maybe they’re just tired.”
This week's challenge for reporters, assuming the convention even goes ahead, will be warding off convention fatigue.

“This is like running a marathon and being told you have another 20 miles to go, but at least this 20 miles is indoors,” said New York 1 News political director Robert Hardt, who, like many others here already, flew into town straight from Denver. He was referring to the last-night move in Denver from the intimate Pepsi Center to the outdoor Invesco Field.
Later, standing in the 5th floor lobby of the Marriot Hotel, where New York reporters and delegates are staying, Daily News reporter Liz Benjamin explained, “You got an exhausted media crew. Nobody wants to go out drinking all night. For the first five days, it’s a party, for the second, it’s a grind. I’m more interested in getting six hours of sleep instead of four,” she said. Then, she went to bed. It was 10 p.m.

Original GOP Monday Convention Schedule

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For the record, the original Monday Republican Convention Schedule is below. We had heard earlier today that Bush might address the convention via satellite, but not that there is no evening session, those plans are obviously up in the air.
See the original Monday schedule...
What was to have been the Monday GOP convention line-up...
President George W. Bush
Vice President Richard B. Cheney
First Lady Laura Bush
Gov. Tim Pawlenty (Minn.)
Gov. Rick Perry (Texas)
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (Calif.)
President George W. Bush
Vice President Richard B. Cheney
First Lady Laura Bush
Gov. Tim Pawlenty (Minn.)
Gov. Rick Perry (Texas)
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (Calif.)
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.)
U.S. Sen. Richard Burr (N.C.)
U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman (Minn.)
U.S. Sen. John Ensign (Nev.)
U.S. Sen. Joseph Lieberman (Conn.)
House Republican Leader John Boehner (Ohio)
U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.)
U.S. Rep. Tom Cole (Okla.)
U.S. Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart (Fla.)
U.S. Rep. Thelma Drake (Va.)
U.S. Rep. Mark Kirk (Ill.)
U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (Calif)
Robert M. (Mike) Duncan, Chairman of the Republican National Committee
Jo Ann Davidson, Co-Chairman of the Republican National Committee and Chairman of the 2008 Republican National Convention Committee on Arrangements
Maria Cino, President and CEO of the 2008 Republican National Convention
Tommy Espinoza
Maj. Gen. Rick Goddard, U.S. Air Force (Ret.)
Bill Gross
Ashley Gunn
Chris Hackett
Doug Leatherdale
Jay Love
Cynthia Lummis
Erik Paulsen
Capt. Leslie Smith, U.S. Army (Ret.)

Yes, Gustav is serious....

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I do not wish to understate the potential devastation of Gustav. For most people, most disasters are abstractions. For many of the people I know personally, 9/11 was bad, but impersonal. For me, and all the other native New Yorkers, it had that abject terror of spending that morning trying to find our relatives and friends who worked in the World Trade Center. (The three hours that my dad and I spent looking for my brother, who was thankfully found alive, was something I wouldn't wish on anyone.)

As a doctor who watched in horror as patients died during Katrina, I am terrified at the low numbers of patients who have been evacuated. Yesterday, 43 gravely ill people were evacuated, and the goal number this morning was 1000 by the end of the day. The hospitals had originally intended to stay open, but then decided they could not.

If you live on the Gulf Coast, I know I speak for all of us here at DCW when I say that we hope you have evacuated, and are reading us safely inland. If you have friends and relatives who live in the danger zone, you have our greatest hopes that your people have left, and too are safe.

Having said AND MEANT that, as we await what will hopefully be a logistic nightmare with NO deaths, we may want to consider the Republicans. (Just to take our minds off things.)

I heard John McCain speaking today, and he said that they "need to be Americans today, and not Republicans." Yes, I know what he meant, but still, it's a fun image.

So let's think about what the Republicans will do this week to show that they ARE Americans and not Republicans. Remember that during the impending Midwest floods this spring, John and George went to Iowa, stayed 35 miles apart, and made speeches. Barack Obama drove out and filled sand bags.

Please use the comments to say what you think the Republicans should do.

Your take:

Republicans cancel most of Monday's events

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John McCain tore up the script for his Republican National Convention on Sunday, ordering the cancellation of all but essential opening-day activities as Hurricane Gustav churned toward New Orleans.

"This is a time when we have to do away with our party politics and we have to act as Americans," he said as fellow Republicans converged on their convention city to nominate him for the White House. - Strib

More from the Chicago Sun-Times

Campaign manager Rick Davis said the "program will be business only and refrain from political rhetoric." The session will open at 3 p.m. central and last about two or two-and-a half hours.

What happens Tuesday and will depend on conditions in the wake of the storm.

"We do expect all of the speakers to speak at some point," though it is not clear when of if this will happen, Davis said.

Convention coverage replay

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I am having some heartache that I did not TIVO the convention coverage. I got to see most of the replay on CNN late at night each day but I definitely want to watch parts again. I am particularly interested to see how Invesco Field looked on TV.
I was excited to see that C-SPAN has video of the speeches on their website at

I am also organizing and uploading pictures to my blog from the convention. Check it out from time to time at

Rally for the Republic starts today

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Tonight Ron Paul's Rally for the Republic takes off. As Matt wrote, the Ron Paul people had a great affect in Nevada on that state's participation at the presumptive Republican convention.

The final count this morning on sold tickets is 9,785, so the total number of people could surpass 12,000. I've been interested in whether there will be any press coverage, and originally, Lou Dobbs was supposed to be a presenter there, but no longer. On his web page, it says that he'll be covering it nightly during his show, but his picture has been taken off the Rally site, and he is no longer listed as a performer, as the Rally refers to all its presenters. I've looked for live feeds, but I cannot find a live link. If I find one later, I will post it.

I'm interested in this for three reasons: first, I find Ron Paul and what he stands for, fascinating. While almost all of the positions are diametrically opposed to my own, there are Libertarian points of view (like getting out of Iraq, and legalizing pot for personal use) that I agree with. Second, this is America, where Freedom of Speech is a dearly held concept, and finally, this group is really a splinter from the presumptive Republican Party.

The Republicans split in 1964, and the two sides never made peace. Had the Rockefeller side held sway that year, there is the potential that the evangelical right would never have risen to hold sway over the mainstream GOP. So here we are 40+ years later, and I want to know what the Paul people have to say.

And as an aside, I think it's cute that they have "performers" in lieu of "speakers" or "presenters" and that buses bringing people there yesterday are called "Ronvoys".

So what is going on there?

Today is training school: a nine-hour course on grass roots organizing.

Tomorrow is three parts: one part Ron Paul book signing, one giant all-day concert to thank the people who participated in Paul's campaign throughout the primary season, and a "leadership summit" about which I can find no information, except that if you bought a ticket to the Tuesday program, you get one ticket to this.

Finally, Tuesday is the real deal. This is their list of performers:

11:30 - Doors open
12:30 - Intro: Tucker Carlson
12:40 - National Anthem: Matt Colvin
12:50 - Invocation: Barb Davis White
12:55 - Howard Phillips
1:10 - Doug Wead
1:30 - Tom Woods
1:50 - Grover Norquist
2:10 - Lew Rockwell
2:30 - Bill Kauffman
2:50 - Special Guest
3:10 - Bruce Fein
3:35 - Gov. Jesse Ventura
4:05 - John Tate‚ Campaign for Liberty Presentation
4:25 - Gov. Gary Johnson
5:00 - Aimee Allen
6:00 - Break
7:00 - Intro: Barry Goldwater Jr.
7:05 - Ron Paul
8:05 - Sara Evans
9:30 - End of Program
9:30 - Jimmie Vaughan After Party

I'll be reporting on the information that comes out from the Rally. What I'll be looking for is how much of the Republican base wants to migrate from the McCain-Palin ticket over to write-in Ron Paul (and perhaps as another option, vote for Bob Barr.)

On the Democratic side, we talk often of this being a transformational year, and of the great enthusiasm we have for our ticket and our ideals. I suspect that the Paul people are equally passionate, although far lower in numbers. But if they can get a foothold, 2008 becomes as much a transformational year for the Republicans as it does for us. Could it be that 2008 is 1964 redux?

GOP Convention Committee calls Nevada State Party "inept"

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We've been following the Republican Nevada delegate fiasco with great glee. It's finally been resolved, but not without some final inter-party shots being taken:

With little time to spare, the Nevada Republican Party has named its delegation to next week's national convention, resolving an embarrassing dispute with supporters of former presidential candidate Ron Paul in a state John McCain is struggling to win.
The compromise list included at least four Paul supporters and nearly mirrored one recommended by a Republican National Committee panel asked to settle the dispute. The RNC Committee on Contests made the recommendation Wednesday in a report that slammed the Nevada GOP for appointing, rather than electing, its 34 delegates and 31 alternates.

The committee wrote it was "deeply troubled by the ineptness of the state party" and "rejects any process to select delegates and alternate delegates that restricts party grass-roots activists from participating in that process, as appears to be the case here."
Nevada's delegation dispute began when Paul supporters were poised to win delegates at a state party convention in Reno in April. The party abruptly shut down the convention and later attempts to reconvene failed because it could not get enough Republicans to attend.

Meanwhile, the Paul supporters held a rogue convention in June and named their own delegation.

The RNC committee ruled that the June convention was unauthorized. "Only a state party has the authority to convene a state convention," the committee wrote.

Wayne Terhune, a leading Paul supporter, called the decision "tyranny." He said he plans to attend an alternative convention held by Paul's "Campaign for Liberty." -

Where are the Republicans?

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Time Magazine's Karen Tumulty asks the question:

It's shortly before 8 a.m., and I'm at Reagan National Airport getting ready to board my flight to Minneapolis. Last week at this time, this airport was jammed. My Fortune magazine colleague Nina Easton, who traveled at this hour then and is marveling at the contrast now, says they were holding flights, because they couldn't get the throngs of people loaded.

This morning: No lines at security, no waiting at the ticket kiosks. Even the TSA guys are commenting at the emptiness of the place. Maybe the Republicans got there early.

Gustav Update: 9 a.m. Sunday

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Despite the dire warnings, many people cannot afford to leave New Orleans, or they are just unwilling to do so.

Meanwhile, Bush and Cheney are planning on staying home.

At this hour, Gustav is still a Cat 3, although expected to intensify by this afternoon. The models have it making land fall on Monday, likely as a Cat 4.

There are mandatory evacuations in Louisiana, and low-lying areas in Mississippi and Alabama.

Many roads are now contraflow to ease evacuation. Buses have been taking people out of New Orleans, although there are still people waiting as of this hour.

There will be no shelter of last resort in New Orleans: neither the City nor the Red Cross is setting anything up. New Orleans announced that if you DO stay, you are on your own, and if you are caught off your property during curfew, they will probably arrest you.

Sunday with the Senators – Republican Edition

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Let’s start in New Hampshire. John Sununu (R) has decided against attending the Republican Convention. Jeanne Shaheen not only attended the Democratic Convention, but spoke. I guess if I were him, I’d stay home, too, since the most recent polls have him down 9 points (Rasmussen) and 11 points (ARG).

In Oregon, Gordon Smith is another Republican staying home from the GOP Convention. And again, if I were him….here is the newest DSCC ad:

Oh, and by the way, when we look at the polls, when it all started, Smith was at 45% and Jeff Merkley was at 25%. Most recent averages have Smith at 49%, Merkley at 41%.

Liddy Dole, Republican of North Carolina, is also passing on the convention. Perhaps people besides me have picked up on the SHE DOESN’T LIVE THERE thing…

And yes, that most recent poll does have
Kay Hagan up by 3 points.

Norm Coleman (“NORM!”) is only attending the convention because he lives in Minnesota. It’s not looking so good for him, either, as Al Franken has caught up and surpassed. OK, it's only 1 point, at 41/40, but he was down double digits recently.

Because Roger Wicker is the interim Senator in Mississippi, he gets a pass on not going to the convention, because he actually SHOULD be home. There is no room for politics when there is the potential for a natural disaster. However, just to keep our count up to date and accurate, the final list of Republican Senators NOT from disaster areas skipping their own convention, in addition to those mentioned above, include: Pat Roberts, Susan Collins, Chuck Hagel, Wayne Allard, Ted Stevens (I’m not sure he’s legally allowed to go, although he is out on bail) and Larry Craig (who, I’m sure, will be missed at the men’s room in the airport, rumour has it he pays well.)

This is Wrong, Two

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Matt wrote 3 hours ago how wrong it would be to deliver an acceptance speech from a zone of devastation.

Well, now it's a few hours later, and the John and Sarah Show is off to disrupt the evacuation.

Likely GOP presidential nominee John McCain and his running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, are traveling to Mississippi on Sunday to check on people getting prepared for Hurricane Gustav.
If you've even sat in traffic while a motorcade tied up traffic for HOURS, you'll immediately see how wrong this is.

While Mississippi is not evacuating, they are still in the danger zone, and the last thing they need is a pair of pandering lightweights disrupting the necessary job of disaster preparedness.

Over in New Orleans, they are preparing for Gustav. While the storm weakened slightly over Cuba, it is expected to intensify. Ray Nagin:

New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin called Gustav "the mother of all storms," saying its destruction could outstrip that from Katrina, which flooded much of his city.

"You need to be scared," Nagin said of the Category 4 hurricane tearing along Cuba's western coast. "You need to be concerned, and you need to get your butts moving out of New Orleans right now. This is the storm of the century."

Presidential Forecast - 8/30 - a little bounce

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Obama leads 291-247, back to where we were on 8/20. Looking at the tracking polls, we don't know if the convention bounce peaked with yesterday's releases, which actually had no polling done after Obama's speech. The news cycles were interesting. From a newspaper and morning new show cycle, Obama's speech and the Palin announcement happened on separate news cycles. But from a polling point of view, there was no evening polling cycle that happened after Obama's speech but before the Palin announcement. So any bounce from Obama's speech may be blunted because the main news story on Friday was Palin.

Please also check out our Senate Forecast and House Forecast.

Unanimous solid states, not shown in the table below:
Solid Obama: CA, CT, DC, HI, IL, MA, MD, RI, VT - 119 EVs. Note: NY is no longer unanimous Obama-Strong (Elec-Vote has it at OL), but has not been placed on the chart at this time. (All numbers, however, are correct).
Solid McCain: AL, ID, KS, KY, MS, NE, OK, TN, UT, WY - 64 EVs. Note: AZ is no longer unanimous McCain-Strong (Elec-Vote and Elec-Proj have it at ML), but has not been placed on the chart at this time.

The sources are sorted by each projection's estimate of Obama's Electoral Votes (Algorithm at bottom). The states are sorted by the number of electoral votes.

DCW Presidential Forecast
Elect. Proj.RCP538

Obama-Strong (O)

Obama-Lean (OL)

Tossup (T)

McCain-Lean (ML)

McCain-Strong (M)

Obama Total

McCain Total

Obama Est.


New Jersey
N. Carolina
S. Carolina
New Mexico
W. Virginia
N. Dakota
S. Dakota

Elect. Proj.RCP538

538 - FiveThirtyEight - Safe and Likely mapped to Strong (O or M), Lean to Lean (OL or ML), Tossup to Tossup (T)
CNN - Safe mapped to Strong, Leaning to Lean, Tossup to Tossup
Elect. Proj. - Election Projection - Solid and Strong mapped to Strong, Moderate to Lean, Weak to Tossup - - Strong mapped to Strong, Weak to Lean, Barely and Tossup to Tossup
FrontLoading HQ - Solid mapped to Strong, Lean to Lean, Tossup (Dem and Rep) to Tossup
NBC - Base mapped to strong,
Lean to Lean, Tossup to Tossup
OpenLeft - Solid mapped to Strong, Lean to Lean, Tossup to Tossup
RM - Rasmussen - Safe and Likely mapped to Strong, Lean to Lean, Tossup to Tossup
RCP - RealClearPolitics - Solid mapped to Strong, Lean to Lean, Tossup to Tossup

Maps and 3-category states will return in the future.

This is wrong

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McCain was scheduled to deliver his acceptance speech Thursday but now may do so from the devastation zone if the storm hits the U.S. coast with the ferocity feared by forecasters. - Politico
If he wants to do a photo-op tomorrow in Mississippi, fine. Maybe he can go visit Trent Lott's house. But to give his acceptance speech from an area hit by the storm? Surely his advisers are smarter than this. (But then they let him pick Palin). Not to mention how inappropriate it would be. It's just wrong.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

And so it begins...

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I am so psyched. (Yes it doesn't take much). We have our first news on 2012 site selection, and we've got two cities expressing interest! First up, Dallas:

As she walked the Pepsi Center grounds in the midst of the Democratic National Convention, Dallas Mayor Pro Tem Elba Garcia appeared convinced: Dallas should host this event in 2012.

"We'd be a perfect location," Dr. Garcia said. "Dallas has the capabilities to do the logistics, and we have the desire. We most definitely should go after a convention."

She's not alone.

Mayor Tom Leppert, for one, says he's also interested in pursuing a national convention four years from now, be it the Republican or Democratic version.

The city was home to the 1984 Republican National Convention. Dallas made the finalist lists of both parties for their 2008 conventions, but the city did not submit formal bids.

The Dallas Cowboys' stadium in Arlington also will be open, giving convention organizers the option to conduct a large-scale event, similar to Barack Obama's nomination acceptance speech at Invesco Field at Mile High, in a massive, modern facility.

Of course, Dallas is also home to the Cotton Bowl in Fair Park. Recent renovations have pushed its seating capacity to beyond 90,000. - Dallas Morning News
First, kudos to DMN reporter Dave Levinthal, who also covered Dallas' aborted attempts for the 2008 conventions.

Dallas was never really enthusiastic about a 2008 bid, and ultimately said they weren't ready. There's also this matter of the three-week-long national Mary Kay seminar held every summer at the Dallas Convention Center, that seemed to be an issue for the 2008 bid.

Second, Indianapolis. Note that this article is from November, 2007:
Add the decision on whether to go after the 2012 GOP National Convention to the list of things the new administration of mayor-elect Greg Ballard will have to tackle. Indiana Republican Party Chairman Murray Clark said once the chaotic schedule of transition has eased a bit, he hopes to sit down with Ballard to talk about the convention.

"Without his blessing, I'm not interested. We wouldn't go for it," Clark said.

Indianapolis tried to lure the 2000 convention, but lost out to Philadelphia. It could cost up to $250,000 to put together a bid, but the payoff is an enormous event that brings 50,000 attendees.

From Denver to St. Paul

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A look back, and a look forward.

First, from Denver:

In the beginning, they didn't even know whether they could land the Democratic National Convention. And toward the end, they didn't know whether they'd be able to raise all the money, or keep traffic moving, or maintain the peace among swarms of protesters promising to make their voices heard.

So Friday morning, in the glow of a convention gone mostly right, the men and women who brought it to Denver and worked to make it happen wore self-satisfied grins on faces that, just days before, had been etched with stress.
They could laugh about it Friday morning, gathered in Denver's performing arts center to assess the convention the morning after it ended with Barack Obama's historic acceptance speech at Invesco Field at Mile High.

But pulling it off was a long, difficult job that began 21/2 years ago when Elbra Wedgeworth, a member of the Denver City Council, began asking why the DNC couldn't be brought to her hometown.
Friday, it was all giddiness. The streets had been reopened. The weather had been perfect the night before. Downtown had seen an energy not common in these parts.

"Words really can't express how I feel right now," Wedgeworth said.
We wrote many posts on labor issues, protests, and money. The labor issues vanished, the protests were relatively minor, and while money was a big concern, it was all eventually raised.

St. Paul, weather permitting, has a tough act to follow:
In politics, there is a truism that you should be careful who and what you follow on stage, a maxim that is about to land on the Twin Cites with significant force in the wake of the much ballyhooed Democratic convention in Denver.
The Democratic convention in Denver was a bit of a head turner for even seasoned observers. There was a steady buildup all week to the huge gathering at Invesco Field, and then an explosion of rhetoric, fireworks and galas after Mr. Obama’s speech on Thursday night. The scale of the convention, along with the thin air, left more than a few gasping for air.

The politically interested will now switch from one city to another — two really, since both Minneapolis and St. Paul will play a role — trading Democrats for Republicans, mountains for lakes, and cow town pride for Minnesota Nice.

GOP: All convention options being discussed

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The GOP is considering a number of options for their convention beyond just a postponement:

McCain campaign manager Rick Davis plans to meet with Republican officials in charge of the party's convention planning in Minneapolis-St. Paul Sunday to review the latest news on Hurricane Gustav and what their options might be — then consulting with the presumptive Republican nominee to determine what changes may need to be made.

"I wouldn't call it a nightmare, but it is a very perplexing challenge," said a GOP official planning the event.

A senior McCain source tells CNN they are considering turning the convention into a service event — a massive telethon to raise money for the Red Cross and other agencies to help with the hurricane.
The storm has already forced last-minute changes in the convention's announced schedule: If the convention — originally scheduled to start Monday — commences by Tuesday, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney's speech will likely move to that night from Wednesday. Other changes are being contemplated this afternoon.

The hardest decisions — like whether to cancel a day or two of the four-day gathering, or to or condense days — will be made at the last second, say GOP officials. But the logistics of those decisions are already being discussed. - CNN
Update from First Read:
For the purposes of getting McCain's name and Palin's name on the ballot, the convention must take place this week; lots of ballot deadlines hit very soon.

McCain considering postponing convention

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With Gustav up to 150 mph, the GOP has some tough choices ahead of them:

John McCain said the Republican National Convention may be postponed as federal officials said Hurricane Gustav was gathering to a devastating Category 5 as it headed toward star-crossed New Orleans.

“It just wouldn't be appropriate to have a festive occasion while a near-tragedy or a terrible challenge is presented in the form of a natural disaster,” McCain told Chris Wallace of “Fox News Sunday,” in an interview taped for tomorrow. “So we're monitoring it from day to day and I'm saying a few prayers, too.”
Officials at the convention, which is to open Monday in St. Paul, Minn., tell Politico they are figuring out how to handle the formal business of nominating McCain even if some delegations are not able to attend. - Politico
And from CQ:
The massive security arrangements, delegate and guest hotel accommodations and other convention-related logistics would make it extraordinarily difficult for the GOP to consider delaying and extending the convention past its scheduled completion on Thursday.
We would urge all our readers in the affected areas to take appropriate action, and hope that this thing somehow weakens.

A new poll style?

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Dear DCW Readers:

I want to test out a new poll provider. The benefit here is that people can enter their own answers. The question is -- I'm not exactly sure where those answers go.

So, if you'd be so kind -- please take the poll so I can try out the provider.

I think you'll see the topic is timely....


Welcome to MSP!

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For those of you arriving in the Twin Cities this weekend for the Republican National Convention we would like to welcome you. You have to remember that Minneapolis and Saint Paul are two distinct cities and that people from Saint Paul will take offense to you calling their city Minneapolis.

Both cities have fantastic Democratic Mayors. RT Rybak is Minneapolis' mayor and Chris Coleman is Saint Paul's.

I lived in Minneapolis for 8 years before moving to Denver 2 years ago. If I still lived there I would have missed the convention in Denver and been on the protest lines in Saint Paul.

You will arrive in the beautiful Minneapolis/Saint Paul International Airport (MSP). The airport is located just south of both cities and is much closer to everything than Denver's airport.

If you live in Minneapolis, chances are a plane is flying directly over your house right now.

You may want to take a brief stop in the bathroom on the left if you have time. Wide stances and toe-tapping are not suggested while you're there.

Things I can suggest seeing while in the Twin Cities are the Chain of Lakes (Lake Harriet, Lake Calhoun and Lake of the Isles). If you're a Mary Tyler Moore fan, the house at the opening of the show is on Lake of the Isles. While in he area check out Uptown and a great restaurant called Chino Latino. Just north from uptown on the way to downtown Minneapolis is the Walker Arts Center and Sculpture Garden.

In downtown Minneapolis you can see the Target Center, where Ron Paul and his supporters will probably outnumber McCain supporters in Saint Paul.

Another thing you may notice is the walkways connecting all of the buildings. It gets a little chilly during the winter and these allow you to stay inside as much as possible.

Minneapolis is a beautiful city... take time to walk around. I could go on and on about all the great places to see.

Saint Paul is the capital of the great state of Minnesota and while often thought of as Minneapolis' smaller sister, it's really come a long way to becoming a destination by itself.

Check out the Science Museum across from the Xcel Energy Center, the Cathedral of Saint Paul and the State Capital.

The X (as the locals call it) is the best arena in the world. There's no better place to watch a hockey game or see a concert. It's a shame the Republicans have to slime it up.

Almost forgot... they have a pretty big mall there to. You can get to it on the Light Rail from Downtown Minneapolis. It's worth checking out once. I think I remember hearing that the population of the Mall of America at times makes it the 3rd or 4th biggest city in Minnesota.

Have fun! And Republicans... please clean up when you're done. Thanks.