Protests, Weather Could Provide the Drama at GOP Convention
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - At least a portion of the Republican National Convention has been canceled by the storm, dubbed "Isaac," threatening the Florida coast. Several groups that were planning to protest the convention say they are considering their options.
The Florida Consumer Action Network (FCAN), with allies in West Virginia, planned a protest outside the kickoff celebration Sunday night. FCAN communications coordinator Michael Long says the plan was to highlight the nation's economic problems - outside the "world's largest cocktail party."
"It's a symbol of everything that's wrong. People schmoozing it up and having a grand old time while everyone who's stuck outside the event in the community is really struggling."
Republicans have defended their economic policies, which they say favor job creators.
The Florida Consumer Action Network is also one of the sponsors of a "Rally and March Against Voter Suppression" planned for Tuesday. Long says the action is aimed at restrictive voting laws recently passed in several states.
"They've got voter purges and new restrictions on when people can vote and how they can register to vote. Tie those to the coordinated strategy by the Republican Party in states like Wisconsin and Pennsylvania to make it harder for people to vote."
Republican supporters of the new laws say they are intended to prevent vote fraud.
Weather permitting, a coalition including labor and peace groups plans to march and rally today. Jared Hamil is with the Coalition to March on the RNC.
"We're a broad-based coalition for a reason, because the Republican and 'one percent' agenda isn't just about one single thing. It's an agenda that doesn't represent the people. Instead, it attacks the people."
Occupy Movement protestors have set up camp near the Tampa Bay Times Forum. One protestor says they are watching both Isaac and the police with a great deal of care.