Apparently the RNC got the message regarding the busses. Things were a lot smoother on the transportation front last night with almost no hiccups.
Several of you have asked what happens during the day when the convention is not in session. There are a number of receptions, conferences, and activities during the day for the delegates and guests. For example, you could attend a seminar on housing policy led by a national expert or attend a VIP reception with a national political leader, or you could opt to spend the day by the pool.
Today, the Connecticut delegation is visiting a museum, having a dinner in downtown, and then will be heading over to the Tampa Bay Times Forum for the last night of the convention.
Security is tight around the convention hall, once you are there, it’s difficult to leave and you have to pass a number of checkpoints to go anywhere around the downtown.
Most of the delegates try to stay in the general vicinity of the convention to avoid the security - a brief unscientific survey of businesses around the convention hall gives mixed reviews of the financial spin off of hosting such a large event. It’s unclear what Tampa spent to lure the convention to its downtown, some estimates say that the convention will provide a $150 million of direct and indirect injection of cash into the greater Tampa area – the jury is still out on that.
If you are the red meat kind of person, last night was your night. The convention floor was crowded for the two headliners, Vice Presidential nominee Paul Ryan, and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Both were fired up and they did a really good job of firing up the crowd (New Mexico Governor Martinez did a great job). By the time Ryan came to the podium, the crowd was on their feet.
Tonight the convention hall will be packed when Mitt Romney gives his acceptance speech – should be interesting.