Live from the Republican Convention
_Editor's Note: Ryan Kriegshauser is one of three Kansas delegates to the Republican National Convention who will be blogging on LJWorld.com. Check back often to see what they're saying._Knowing that I am thrilled about Sarah Palin, Ryan gave me his delegate pass so that I was able to watch her historic speech. For the Republican women at the convention, there has been a lot of anticipation for the speech that was going to introduce us to our next vice president. Sarah did not disappoint. She did a fantastic job! Palin was strong and smart - hitting the issues with the no-nonsense attitude of a mother. I was sitting in a row of professional women in their twenties. When Sarah Palin walked onto the stage, the feeling was electric. Here was a tough woman who had worked hard against all of the typical roadblocks we face everyday: from how to balance family and professional goals to what to wear to be ourselves and still look professional. For woman across the country, Sarah is a role model of what we are striving to accomplish. As I was standing on a chair with my "Palin Power" sign, I knew that this was one of the best moments in my life. By the time Sarah's speech was over and I was able to check my cell, I had 19 text messages from girlfriends who were thrilled that we had a candidate who really represented us. Even guys, who had not been sure that Palin was up for the job, were convinced that she would be a strong vice president.
! The floor is the reason delegates work to get elected. Delegates have the ability to move around the convention floor. It's the center of energy and excitement, where VIPs walk around to meet and greet the delegates.However, for the Kansas delegation, the alternate delegates have the prime seating. While the Kansas delegates are in a rear corner of the floor, the alternates sit directly next to the VIP box with a clear line of sight to the stage. ! Check out these pictures taken by a friend in the alternates' section. They include George H.W. Bush, Jon Voight, and [Cindy McCain] - all of which were taken from only a few feet away. : http://worldonline.media.clients.elli..." width="281" height="211 : http://worldonline.media.clients.elli..." width="281" height="211 : http://worldonline.media.clients.elli...
Editor's Note: Becca Korphage is one of three Kansas delegates to the Republican National Convention who will be blogging on LJWorld.com. Check back often to see what they're saying.It is about 2:15 a.m. and we just got back to the hotel. The day started with a breakfast meeting with Congressman Jerry Moran. Afterward, I headed to downtown Minneapolis for a little souvenir shopping at the Civic Fest and then to the St. Thomas Law School for a Catholics for McCain event. We attended Mass followed by a luncheon. One thing I appreciate about being Catholic is the true universality of the Church. I can worship with people from around the country or the globe and absolutely be on the same page.After the luncheon we previewed the documentary "Advise and Dissent" about the Supreme Court nomination process, particularly with Alito and Roberts, but even references to Bork, etc. It was very interesting, but I had to leave early before the panel spoke (Ralph Reed, Sen. Dewine, etc) because I had to get back to the hotel. In the afternoon the Kansas and Oklahoma delegations were invited to a reception hosted by Koch and BNSF. We had wonderful speakers - Sen. Sam Brownback, former Congressman J.C. Watts and Matt Schlapp. The venue was just a couple blocks from the Xcel center. The convention started promptly at 6:30. The night's theme was both a combination of "country first" and "service". I'm not one to get teary-eyed often, but I welled up with the essay on the American flag, the tribute to a fallen navy seal as well as at the tribute to Ronald Reagan. There is such tremendous pride and passion from these stories that exemplify who we are as a nation and as a people - individually and collectively. Kansas's alternate delegates have the sweetest location, right next to the VIP box. So we watched, took pictures of and shook hands with the VIPs, President George H. W. Bush and Laura Bush, etc. The highlights were the speeches by Sen. Fred Thompson and Sen. Joe Lieberman. It was refreshing to hear politicians tell it like it is with no need to gloss over a candidate's credentials. John McCain is the real deal. Obama is not. I was fascinated by Lieberman's guts to lay out the truth knowing that he will be excommunicated even more so by his former party. I hope the independents and many Democrats will take the call to heart and check out McCain with open hearts and vote for him in November. After the convention session ended we had many events to choose from for the after hours. Most of my friends and I ended up at Gov. Mike Huckabee's rock concert. It was a blast. They really know how to rock! The music selections, all being more classic rock and country, were great. We had a lot of fun.Back to the hotel by 2:00 a.m. At it again at 7:30 a.m.
_Editor's Note: Doris Riley is one of three Kansas delegates to the Republican National Convention who will be blogging on LJWorld.com. Check back often to see what they're saying._I am a first time delegate and this is an awesome experience knowing its our responsibility to cast a ballot for the nominee, Senator John McCain and his running mate, Gov. Sarah Palin. Our first day was truncated due to Hurricane Gustav, and our hearts and prayers are with the gulf states. However, there was some official business that had to be conducted, and we were able to finish the necessary work. I am grateful that everything turned out for the Gulf States, and that great tragedy was adverted. It looks like everything will be back on track and on schedule later today, but we are waiting for the official word from the McCain campaign. I am looking forward to the events and session later this evening.In the meantime it's been great connecting with other delegates from around the country and getting to know the members of the Kansas delegation.
Editor's Note: Ryan Kriegshauser is one of three Kansas delegates to the Republican National Convention who will be blogging on LJWorld.com. Check back often to see what they're saying.! Monday: Unlike most other conventions, the feeling on the opening day of the 2008 GOP convention was somewhat reserved. The thoughts and prayers of 46,000 delegates, alternates, guests, and media personnel were focused on the gulf coast, as our fellow Americans endured hurricane Gustav. Everyone at the convention was urged to contribute to the hurricane effort while right there on the floor by texting. In fact many of the events for the Kansas delegation were shortened or canceled. There is a consensus among all of the delegates that I have spoken to that this was the right thing to do. However, the protesters at the convention were not as respectful. There were widespread rumors of attacks on buses and police cars. While walking out of the convention session, a few other delegates and I walked behind a line of numerous police officers. Other than that, the protesters that I personally observed merely consisted of not more than a dozen folks. ! I encourage everyone to contribute to the hurricane effort by logging on to [Causegreator.com] to find out what you can do to help. This is a great way for all of us to put our country first. : http://worldonline.media.clients.elli..." width="230" height="307 : http://worldonline.media.clients.elli..." height="204" width="370 : http://www.causegreater.com/
_Editor's Note: Becca Korphage is one of three Kansas delegates to the Republican National Convention who will be blogging on LJWorld.com. Check back often to see what they're saying._We left for the Republican National Convention at 6 a.m. Sunday morning for a pleasant seven hour drive straight up I-35. I'm a city girl, but I love driving across open plains. My friend and I arrived just in time to check in, change and get downtown to a Fox News reception. The afternoon led into the opening party for the convention at Civic Fest. It was a bit of an amusement park and shoppers' dream for political junkies; a spirited way to kick off the week. Monday morning we had confirmation that the RNC sessions would be shortened to include required business only. The theme for the night's speeches was intended to be "Country First". Even though we didn't hear any of those speeches, the actions of the RNC, McCain's camp and the delegations delivered that message loud and clear. It was inspiring and patriotically unifying to see video from the gulf coast governors, all Republican, sharing how they're working together - communities and governments - to be prepared, support and recover from what promised to be a devastating storm. I appreciated and donated to several organizations Chairman Mike Duncan and First Lady Laura Bush promoted. McCain and the RNC did the right thing by keeping the attention where it needed to be that night; not in the words of inspiring speeches, but in the actions of putting country first. While we were at the convention we had about an hour to wander around while the credentials committee confirmed quorum. During that time I managed to find four of my old Young Republican National Federation friends from around the country. Many years ago I was extremely involved in YRs at the county, state and national level. Even though I haven't participated in anything nationally in about 5 years, I still stay in contact. One thing that was a little surreal was watching Kevin McCarthy - excuse me, Congressman McCarthy - speak as the Platform Committee chairman. Kevin was the chairman of the YRNF back when I was actively involved. It is exciting to see that kind of progression. I knew he was a congressman, I just didn't know he had become this high profile in the party. Go Kevin! Also, during the recess I went by the Winning Women suite. Winning Women is a national Republican women's political leadership series. The chapter in Kansas is called the Dwight D. Eisenhower Excellence in Public Service Series, of which I'm a graduate. I would encourage you to check it out. It was fun to meet women from other states and chapters. Once back at the hotel our delegation enjoyed a reception presented by Cargill. I followed that up with an evening out downtown with friends from around the state that I hardly see and friends from around the country that I never see. We had a good time. As Gustav has thankfully been downgraded significantly this evening's session should be back to normal. I'm excited!