As Barack Obama touched down in Charlotte today to accept the Democratic presidential nomination Thursday night, where that will happen and why has given rise to an inane bit of partisan jousting.
The president’s big acceptance speech has been moved from the outdoor, Bank of America football stadium where 65,000 people were expected to be on hand, to the more modest Time Warner Cable Arena where the crowd will be downsized to about 15,000. Democrats said the reason is rain. It drenched convention-goers yesterday as they filed into the arena, and more is forecast for Thursday night. An outdoor stadium just isn’t a good bet, Democratic party officials said.
Republicans say that’s poppycock, suggesting it’s not the rain but rather the embarrassing prospect of a partially filled stadium that prompted Democrats to flip the script.
“After promising to hold the event at Bank of America stadium rain or shine, suddenly Team Obama is moving inside after questions about enthusiasm for the event,” said Kirsten Kukowski, Republican National Committee spokeswoman. “What’s the real forecast for the speech? Forty percent chance of lies and scattered excuses.”
Really? And this after a looming storm forced the GOP to cancel the first day of its convention in Tampa, Florida last week.
This close to an election with the candidates running neck-and-neck, essentially everything becomes political. But the weather?
Pictured above: Virgin Island delegate Pam Samuel waits in her seat at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. (Sept. 5, 2012)