Thursday, August 30, 2012

Tidbits and thanks from the Missouri Delegation - Thursday, Aug. 30th, 2012 from Tampa and the RNC Convention

Tidbits to mention today:

A huge shoutout with our thanks to the RNC and the City of Tampa for excellent bus service last night. The night before, transportation was nightmarish for some, but last night, the system was humming and service was excellent. They worked the bugs out overnight apparently, and delegates could not have been happier.  Great job!

Missouri Delegates are treated each day of the convention to breakfast, lunch and dinner, courtesy of corporate sponsors, who also provide tote bags, gifts, notebooks, snacks, pins, pens, and yes, even chocolate lollipops with elephants on them. Here is a list of those folks, and we hope we are not leaving anyone out.  Thank you to all these businesses and organizations that have made our stay in Tampa so pleasurable!

Med-Pay, Inc.
Ford Motor Company
The Doe Run Company
Husch Blackwell
BNSF Railway
Leggett & Platt, Inc.
Missouri Hospital Assn.
Home State Health Plan
Express Scripts
Peabody Energy
Anthem Health
Anheuser Busch Companies
Enterprise Holdings PAC

Thursday, Aug. 30th--Ryan rocks the hall with call to action: "We Can Do This"!

(Photo downloaded from Drudge Report)

By Kay Hoflander, Missouri Delegate At-Large

Night #3 at Tampa 2012 was a night when the tables were turned. Paul Ryan went on the attack and the Romney-Ryan strategists took their message straight to the American people by taking the offense on Medicare.

To take a look at my comments on Missourinet this morning with more on Ryan's discussion of Medicare, click here.

 I guess one could say that the factual and clear message Ryan gave America last night was best described in how he dominated the Twitter world.  According to The Hill's headline today, "Ryan's convention speech prompts more tweets than both 2008 conventions." To read the full story, visit this link.

I tried to do my part, but it wasn't easy. His one-liners were happening so fast, I had trouble tweeting from my iPad quickly enough. Thankfully, my delegate friends Becky and Carla repeated them so I could tweet before the next one came rolling along. Believe me, tweeting, cheering, standing and waving a sign all at the same time was a indeed a challenge, but a whole barrel of fun.

Secret Service tightened the hall just before Ryan appeared, so if a delegate happened to be at a concession stand, he or she could not make their way back to the floor to hear him in person. Video screens were everywhere though, so no one really missed a thing. TV crews moved into the walkways interviewing as many delegates as they could just before Ryan appeared. The floor atmosphere last night was electric to say the least.

But I digress, back to Ryan's comments that energized the crowd as he attacked Obama's record.

Here are a few of Ryan's memorable quotes tweeted from the hall last night by a thousands, including myself:

"We can do this!"

"We will not replace our founding principles, we will reapply them.

"Our rights come from nature and God and not from government."

"Mitt is a prayerful and honorable man."

"Being successful in business is a good thing! Mitt has not only succeeded but succeeded where others have not."

"I've heard the songs on Romney's playlist and on elevators."  #funnyline"

 "College graduates should not have to stare at fading Obama posters in their childhood bedrooms." Great!

"You have not failed, your leaders have failed you."

"College grads should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedrooms."

Only Paul Ryan can get an applause line out of a percentage of GDP.

Ryan is saying everything we want to say to Independents to win them over.

Ryan--"To this day, my Mom is my role model."

"I'm going to level with you, we don't have much time" (to fix our country and economy)

"It's really simple. We need to quit spending money we don't have."

"These past 4 years we have suffered no shortage of words from the White House."

Ryan on Obama administration: "It began with a triple A credit rating and ended with a downgraded America."

"Our opponents can consider themselves on notice.  We want this debate.  We will win this debate."

"The greatest threat to Medicare is Obamacare."

And this final one I especially like was tweeted by Ari Fleishcer: "Anyone still wondering why Romney picked Ryan?"

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wednesday, August 29th RNC ConventionTheme -- "We Can Change It"

This morning at breakfast the Missouri Delegation heard from featured speaker John Gilmore, the former Governor of Virginia, and were credentialed for tonight's convention session themed "We Can Change It".

This afternoon, our delegation will be treated to the T Pepin Hospitality Center and dinner reception before we board busses for the Tampa Times Forum and the Wednesday night convention program.  Tonight we will hear from an array of powerful speakers including Sen. John Thune, Sen. John McCain, Sen. Rand Paul, and Condoleezza Rice, former Secretary of State.  The highlight of the convention tonight will be remarks from our Vice Presidential candidate the Hon. Paul Ryan, U.S. Congressman and the opportunity to meet his family.

It's almost convention time! More as we go.

Blogging from Tampa 2012 RNC Convention--Highlights and Headaches on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012

By Kay Hoflander, Missouri Delegate At-Large

Tuesday Headaches Could Not Dampen
 the Excitement of the Convention

This morning (Wednesday, Aug. 29th) at our usual Missouri delegate breakfast and credentialing, I happened to sit at a table in the corner with members of the Kansas City media, Michael Mahoney and Dave Helling and cameraman. I grabbed that spot on the side of the banquet room because I came in a tad late. Granted, our breakfast meeting was pushed back (thankfully) from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. due to delayed bus transportation the night before, but it was still difficult to make the 9 o'clock meeting after such a short night. The lack-of-sleep headache was this. For some of our delegation, it took two hours of sitting miserably on shuttle busses before they could get back to the hotel after the convention, some arrived at the hotel at 2 a.m. or later. Some but not all busses were forced to wait out a security clearance, a "sweep" that was underway, we were told.  I figured the 'news guys' at the breakfast table this morning would know what caused the snafu, so I asked. Their guess was as good as mine I suppose, and we agreed it had something to do with Mitt Romney's surprise appearance after Ann Romney spoke. He was in the area, and that may have caused the security headache. We will probably hear more about that today.

However, things could have been worse.  We could have been the poor delegates from Florida. The Tampa Bay Times wrote this morning that the Florida delegates were to board a bus in the suburbs and travel 30 minutes to the Forum for the convention. The busses did not show up, and after a long wait in 90-degree sweltering heat, the busses finally came. The story reads, "After an hour's bus ride, one bus of delegates arrived in downtown Tampa with a half-hour to spare. But at that point, for reasons unknown, the bus driver took a wrong turn."  Making several loops and loops around downtown, the driver attempted to try different routes to get to the Forum, unsuccessfully. Passengers began to panic and demand to get off the bus. One delegate was quoted as saying that the bus driver must have been a Democrat, however, it turned out that officers were turning him away at each place he might have stopped, again for whatever reasons that remain unknown. Eventually, Florida delegates arrived, but did miss part of the convention. 

Headaches inside the convention: the food, or lack of it.  Because the convention was compacted from four days into three, schedules changed regarding when our Missouri Delegation would eat lunch and dinner. We were given vouchers to buy concession food inside the Forum. Long lines, limited food, and in some cases, vouchers that didn't work, left us settling for whatever food and beverage we could find. A mild headache yes, but even that could not dampen our spirits and excitement that was growing for the evening's program ahead.

On-the-floor headaches: credential and rules committee reports were met with boos from some galleries and from within our own delegation, to some degree.  However, the Party Platform was generally liked and even applauded by most delegates. News stories today are easy to find about the adoption of credential, rules and platform reports, so I won't go into the lengthy details of those here and leave that to you to research.

Excitement in the Hall

• The Missouri Delegates were sought after by reporters for interviews on camera and in print, without question, they told us, because of the Todd Aiken controversy. Although the subject was a difficult one, it was exciting for our delegates to be interviewed, and most enjoyed the process and the opportunity to share their views. One thing we all seem to agree on is that Missouri delegates are respectful of each others' disparate viewpoints and want to focus on winning the state for Mitt Romney and on winning our statewide races in November. Practically everyone who was interviewed echoed that same sentiment.

• The Tuesday evening's theme was "We Built It" and it is perhaps best presented in pictures. Take a look at our photos of Tuesday night's exciting and inspirational session on our Faeebook page located here:

Monday, August 27, 2012

Dave Spence for MO Governor & his wife Suzie visit MO Delegates in Tampa

Dave and Suzie Spence visited the Missouri Delegation at our host hotel in Tampa tonight, Monday, Aug. 27th for an Italian fare dinner and delicious dessert bar. Chairman David Cole introduced Dave Spence (for Governor) to a standing ovation and a second one at the end of his rousing talk. The group was also treated to remarks from Suzie Spence who gave an outstanding call to win this gubernatorial election in November. Senator Roy Blunt and family attended the evening gathering and spent a lot of time visiting one-on-one with Missouri Delegates, Alternates and their guests. Another wonderful event planned by the Missouri GOP and the superwoman team of Emily Kliethermes and Michelle Wright, MoGOP coordinators! Many thanks All!

Rain, sandbags inside the hotel, and lots of newspapers at our door greeted Missouri Delegates this morning in Tampa

Visit our Lafcopolitics Facebook page for more photos of the Missouri Delegation's activities on
 Monday, Aug. 27th at Tampa 2012 RNC Convention at link below.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sunday, August 26th RNC-hosted Welcome Event at Tropicana Field, Home of the Rays

More news about "What Your Missouri Delegation Did Today" on Sunday, August 26th in Tampa
by Kay Hoflander - Missouri At-Large Delegate

Our Missouri Delegation along with delegates, alternates and guests from across the country attended a spectacular welcome event tonight at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg. It was a short 25-minute bus ride from our hotel. We were one of the lucky delegations with not far to travel.  Roads were blocked and closed to traffic as we neared the ballpark. Police, Secret Service, Homeland Security and scores of other law enforcement officers kept our way safe and secure. The biggest challenge we encountered was finding the right bus back to the hotel, but it really wasn't too bad, and now we know the bus system for the upcoming convention sessions.

When the Missouri Delegation boarded the bus to leave the hotel for the event, we were filmed and some were interviewed by Dave Helling of the Kansas City Star. Check out one of his blogs here:

Upon arrival at Tropicana Field, we went through metal detectors and all the necessary security checks to enter a world of brightly costumed pirates and acrobats, bands and singers and glorious, scrumptuous food.  The fresh Ceviche seafood salad with shrimp, scallops, onions and lime was perhaps my favorite. On second thought, the richness of the lobster mac 'n' cheese and crispy Grouper sliders were close seconds. Pulled pork and Paella, too. All amazing.

Pictures speak louder than words: take a look at our Lafayette County Facebook page to see photos of this colorful warm welcome Tampa gave to the RNC convention attendees. Once again, thank you Tampa!

Photos here:

A shout out to the great ladies we met tonight from the California Federation of Republican Women.

More tomorrow...

FINAL NOTE: David Espo of the Associated Press posted this story tonight of recent events leading up to the RNC Convention and the aftermath: "Romney's convention: Big storm, rape controversy".

More from Tampa 2012 RNC Convention - Sunday, August 26

The rains started in Tampa this afternoon, but it's a mild downpour so far.  This won't damper the spirits of the Missouri Delegation tonight, however, as we will attend the covered Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg for the RNC-hosted Welcome Event.

At this afternoon's meeting, Delegates were given the opportunity of actually signing the petition to place Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan's names in nomination. In the past, this was reserved for 5 selected states, but now any delegate from any state also has that chance. The document could make its way into a Romney Presidential Museum one day. Needless to say, most Missouri delegates signed, although some still pledged to Santorum did not.

Tomorrow, early breakfast and credentialing. For lunch we will visit renowned Ybor City in Tampa's historic Latin Quarter. Famous for its tradition of watching hand-rolled cigars being made, Ybor City was founded by Vincente Martinez Ybor (e-bor) as a cigar-manufacturing center. Today it is one of only two National Historic Landmark Districts in Florida, guides tell us. Can't wait to see the charm of the city which also includes the smell of Cuban coffee being roasted. Cuban coffee, here we come!

Blogging from Tampa, Sunday, Aug. 26, 2012--What Your Missouri Delegation Did Today

That some good can be derived from every event is a better proposition
 than that everything happens for the best, which it assuredly does not. - Author Unknown

By Kay Hoflander, Missouri Delegate At-Large

Good morning from Tampa as our Missouri Delegation begins Day One of the convention amidst schedule changes, a tropical storm, and yes, we still have the "the mess" at home, as it is being referred to in Tampa. As much as we try to put the Aiken debacle behind us, we can't. At every turn, Missourians are asked about it by other convention goers, media and just about everyone else we encounter.

 Nevertheless, we as delegates and alternates are excited to get to the business at hand of the convention--talking about the real life issues that plague our country--the sad state of our economy, job losses and general dissatisfaction with the way our country is being led by Obama, which is actually not at all in our view. We are looking for our strong presidential and vice presidential team, Romney and Ryan, to bring the United States of America back to it's days of being a "shining city on a hill."

You will no doubt remember that President Ronald Reagan used these words well in his in his 1984 acceptance of the Republican Party nomination and in his January 11, 1989, farewell speech to the nation:..."I've spoken of the shining city all my political life, but I don't know if I ever quite communicated what I saw when I said it. But in my mind it was a tall proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, wind-swept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace, a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity, and if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That's how I saw it and see it still.."

But I digress, back to the business at hand today.

 At 2 PM today, the Missouri Delegation will meet in our hotel ballroom to discuss the schedule changes ahead.
Last night we received this message from Chairman David Cole: "To delegates, alternates, and guests,
By now, you have probably heard that the RNC has postponed the first day of the convention.  At this time, we do not believe that there is any danger to visitors; however, this decision was made out of an abundance of caution.
Please keep in mind that this postponement only affects the convention itself.  All of the Missouri delegation events, including the 2:00 delegation meeting on Sunday, the evening host reception, and the breakfast on Monday, will continue as planned. In lieu of Monday’s convention sessions, we are currently in the process of identifying possible events for our delegates and alternates. We look forward to seeing you tomorrow (Sunday)!"
David Cole

And one side note: the Missouri host hotel is actually inside the airport, a great location, and is affording us the best of hospitality as well. Thank you Tampa Airport Marriott and all the great Tampa convention volunteers who are here to greet and help us. And, we can easily see why this airport is ranked at the top nationally--perfect ambiance, music, art, quality food choices and an abundance of shops. One airport shop is giving out American flag lapel pins with a purchase, so a shout out to Radio Road with our thanks.

More as we go..