Laura Bush acted as a stand-in for the President (many Republicans breathed an understandable sigh of relief that George was busy), and quickly rallied the troops around flag and country:
Like all of you George and I were planning to come and enjoy this convention, to have a really good time, and we would have been here tonight speaking, but of course as we all know events on the Gulf Coast region have changed the focus of attention, and out first priority now, today, is to ensure the safety and the well being of those living in the Gulf Coast region.
Great. Good for the GOP.
BUT...It would have been nice had the President -- and the presumptive Republican candidate for the Presidency -- shown this much concern three years ago when Katrina hit New Orleans killing more than 1,800 people and leaving hundreds of thousand homeless. Instead, George W. Bush was with John McCain celebrating the Arizona Senator's 69th birthday.
Meanwhile, news organization reported today that Alaska Governor and presumptive GOP Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin has hired a lawyer to represent her while the Alaska State Legislature investigates the firing of Alaska's Commissioner of Public Safety after he refused to fire a State Trooper who had divorced Palin's sister.
And, then -- as if that weren't enough for day one of the GOP Convention, Sarah and Todd Palin announced that their 17-year-old, unmarried daughter, Bristol, was pregnant.
Wow. Fabulous first night, if you like soap operas.
Am I supposed to believe that John McCain, certainly aware of the controversy over Sarah Palin's firing of her Public Safety Commissioner, Walt Monegan, and of the looming likelihood of an investigation, was aware of this wrinkle in the Alaska Governor's story?
Or is it possible, as seems likely, that the choice of Palin was a very last minute decision, coming on the heels of a spectacularly successful Democratic National Convention, in the face of a unified Democratic Party, and the McCain camp fell far short of doing due diligence with this candidate?
Can the hapless Republicans outdo themselves on night #2? Stay tuned...
By the way, did I mention that at least four journalists, including "Democracy Now!" host Amy Goodman and Associated Press photographer Matt Rourke were arrested while covering protests outside the convention?
Unbelievable. God bless America.