Here is the updated plan that convention organizers announced a short time ago on a conference call with reporters: They have moved around the convention schedule to cram in some of the speeches that were scrapped last night on account of the hurricane.
Last night’s speech theme was supposed to be “service”. “Rather than talking about it, we actually did it,” said campaign manager Rick Davis. They raised millions of dollars for hurricane relief between the phone bank they set up at their hotel and the parties that were turned into fundraisers, as well as private giving by their donors.
So tonight will be all about John McCain’s life story and his military service – and more abut kids.
We will hear from a friend of McCain, Wes Gullet, telling the story about how the McCains and the Gullets each adopted a child from Mother Teresa’s orphanage in Bangladesh. It will be “a story of how two families got joy and love from effort of adoption.”
The godfather of one of McCain’s sons, Tommy Espinoza, will talk about “ intersection of God, country, and family.” A cell mate of McCain’s from Vietnam will talk about “valour under difficult circumstances.”
There will be a live feed of President Bush speaking from the White House.
Fred Thompson, one of McCain’s closest friends, his long-time seat-mate in the Senate, and one-time rival for the presidency will give a speech entitled, “The Courage and Service of John McCain.” He will talk about “what makes him tick why is he the maverick that he is.”
Then the Democrat turned Independent senator, Joe Lieberman, will give a speech entitled “The Original Maverick.” The campaign says he will talk about “American exceptionalism” and what it means to sacrifice to help others and “why that makes our country so much different than so many others.”
The campaign is negotiating with the networks to get more air time tonight since yesterday was so compressed.
Rick Davis said the campaign has raised $8 million over the Internet since announcing Sarah Palin as VP. He said they raised $50 million in August. (Note: he must have been approximating or the figure went up. Previously the campaign had said McCain raised $47 million in August.) (Obama raised $47 million in August.) (Obama raised $51 million in July; I haven’t seen August numbers yet.) Palin is “penciled in” to speak on Wednesday, he said.