Political Asylum | Harper's Magazine - Part 2

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Political Asylum

In Search of the RNC Dissenters

At first I thought the quote of the day had to go to John Boehner, who explained to a gathering of Republicans at breakfast the controversy of his name: “People…

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After Rick Santorum, Ann Romney, and Chris Christie

Jack: At home, on TV, a convention is a giant show—colorful swag, barn-burning speakers, big funny hats. When you are amid the scrum, though, you can see just how much…

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Alternate Roll Call

An exchange from last night in Tampa, where, after an eternity of keeping Mitt Romney at arm’s length, the G.O.P finally nominated him as its standard-bearer against Barack Obama. As…

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No Apology: Bad Book, Worse Premise

August 28, 3:37 p.m. Tucked away in the RNC’s media swag bag, alongside a pack of complimentary CSX peppermint breath mints (“Feel that good, minty breath/ Like a freight train…

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Reading the Bay Leaves

I had a talk with Bay Buchanan on the convention floor Monday. Remember her? She’s Pat Buchanan’s sister. Back in the 1990s, when Pat was leading the torch-and-pitchfork crowd, she…

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A Troubling Chant on the Convention Floor

We’ve received an overwhelming response to this blog post, which was written from the convention floor on Tuesday. As the post states, I saw delegates chanting “U.S.A.!” and silencing Puerto…

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We Can’t Be Zeros

There is talk at the convention about the lack of a Republican minority vote, and of course almost no visible minorities can be found on the floor, which appears instead…

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Security Theatre, Act II

August 28, 9:39 a.m. Another piece of what Jack likes to call Security Theatre last night in Ybor City: We were drinking and playing pool with my cousin and her…

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Lethargy in the T. Bay

The projection of SWAT power here in Tampa is overwhelming. Local estimates put the security collective at well over 1,000 people, meaning there is one officer for every two delegates…

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1960 Is(n’t) Here Again

August 28, 9:33 a.m. Happy LBJ’s birthday! Appropriately enough, the permanent sign on the wall of the Republican Convention reads, “We can do better”—the phrase John Kennedy used against Richard…

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A Season in Hell, or A Brief Chronology of the Trip From Ybor City to the Republican National Convention

August 27, 4:55 p.m. 10:00 a.m.   This is going to be great! I’m covering a convention with my long-time best friend and old political buddy, Jack Hitt. We have known…

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The BadTV Wing of the Republican Party

August 27, 9 a.m. Coming in from the Tampa airport, a giant billboard greets everyone as they pull out onto I-275: don’t believe the liberal media. And the chatter in…

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Isaac’s Left Turn

August 27, 8:50 a.m. Here, there’s only a light rain and wind outside. But the local Fox channel is reporting that Tropical Storm Isaac is picking up power and headed…

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The Scene Is Wet

August 27, 12:40 a.m. Tampa is a blur tonight, a smear of soft rain and humidity and downtown lights that have transformed an essentially modern and no-nonsense city into something…

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The Blogging Bastards of Tampa Bay

August 26, 6:27 p.m., en route to Tampa and the Republican National Convention, Jet Blue Flight 985, Seat 25D. With apologies to the Battling Bastards of Bataan: We’re the blogging…

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