“My name is Mitt Romney, and I had hoped to come before you under happier circumstances. I looked forward to telling you about my faith, my family, and my vision for this great country. But this is not a day for politics. This is a day for all Americans – regardless of party and partisanship – to stand with our president in solemn determination to do all we can for the people of the Gulf Coast….”
This is not the speech Romney had planned to deliver this week, but it may be the one he has to give.
With Tropical Storm Isaac on target for New Orleans, senior officials involved in planning the Republican National Convention said on Monday that they were considering a number of worst-case scenarios, including a quick nominating vote and a truncated Romney address in a smaller, more formal venue than the Tampa Bay Times Forum.
No decision is likely on Monday, but the Romney team is considering how they could salvage some political gain from even the worst-possible scenarios, said two senior GOP officials who discussed convention options with National Journal. The officials, both directly involved in convention planning, spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss campaign strategy.
The Romney team cancelled the first day of the Republican National Convention with Isaac threatening Florida on Monday. Even as they awoke to light rain and clearing skies, with Isaac turned west toward the Gulf Coast, Romney advisers realized they had a bigger problem: a potentially deadly storm aimed for New Orleans seven years – almost to the day – after Hurricane Katrina killed more than 1,800.