This is a Party!

@PltclPrtyCrshr (No. 4)

7/21/16

Let me start with a quick thank you to the Washington Post! I don’t subscribe. I won’t subscribe. But I appreciate WaPo nevertheless.

It’s Thursday afternoon in Cleveland at the Republican National Convention. It’s sunny. The sky is blue. It’s 90 degrees. It’s humid. And WaPo took over an entire bar/restaurant on East 4th Street, right near the Quicken Loans Arena. Not open to the public. But all it took were my media credentials, a confident approach to the disinterested junior staffer at the door and a well timed, purposeful, “I’m here for a meeting.”

So now I’m sitting in the air conditioning, drinking a free beer and picking hors d’oeuvres off the server trays as they come out hot from the kitchen (excuse me for a second, I have to grab another stone-ground mustard meatball – delicious). Gary Johnson just did an interview on the WaPo set wearing sunglasses on his head like at après ski. And Michael Steele is standing (he is very tall) five feet from me at the same table. Oh how happy he must be that he is now the former Chairman of the Republican National Committee and not the current one, and a political pundit who gets to comment and criticize and joke about the current Republican Party and not have to do anything about it. I see Hugh Hewitt talking to some folks. And I see myself ordering another free beer.

Ah, Cleveland. What a week! Here comes the meatball guy again. Very welcome surprise. Except he accidentally dropped the mustard on me. Hey, I’m in a bar…

Three days into the Republican National Convention, the highlights seem to be, Hillary is a criminal, white people, Donald Trump Jr. should run for office and the Trump campaign has its collective head up its collective tush (Melania’s plagiarized speech, the jumbo screen behind the stage was blank or twitching all Wednesday night, the Trump campaign reviewing the Ted Cruz speech and green lighting it, despite no endorsement, John Kasich not bothering showing up, the $400 I am going to lose tonight at the casino).

But this is fun!

Lots of celebrity sightings, including Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, Ohio State Treasurer Josh Mandel, Ohio Secretary of State John Husted (with attractive wife), MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough, New York Congressman Peter King (who talks like he has a mouth full of marbles), Tom Brokaw (unfortunately looking very old), Senator James Lankford of Oklahoma (a ginger!), NBC’s Chuck Todd, Don Trump, Jr. (very slick hair), Florida Governor Rick Scott, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, Ohio Congressman Bill Johnson (very short), Wisconsin Congressman Sean Duffy, MSNBC’s John Heilman, Oklahoma Senator Jim Inhofe. I loved that someone started talking to Inhofe and had no idea who he was. Inhofe did not see happy.

Grover Norquist just arrived. He made a joke about the golf movie with Adam Sandler. Grover, it’s called Happy Gilmore. And the bar temporarily stopped serving alcohol. Tax policy really gets Republicans riled up!

More to come.

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