Gustav May Delay GOP Convention

Storm could raise specter of Katrina, detract from McCain
By Jess Kilby,  Newser User
Posted Aug 29, 2008 1:53 AM CDT
Two fishermen prepare to secure their boats before the arrival of Tropical Storm Gustav at port Royal in Kingston yesterday. Gustav killed 23 people in Haiti and the Dominican Republic.   (AP Photo/Collin Reid)
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(Newser) – Republicans are considering delaying the start of next week's convention in Minneapolis if deadly Hurricane Gustav hits big, reports the Washington Post. The storm is on course to nail the Gulf Coast with full force early next week, and party officials don’t want America thinking about President Bush’s bungled Katrina response when McCain takes center stage. The White House may also yank Bush from the convention line-up. He's now scheduled for Monday's opening.

Party strategists also worry that a Gulf Coast storm would draw negative attention to the offshore oil rigs that McCain has touted as a fix for rising gas costs. But a former Bush staffer said Gustav could actually be a “two-fer” boon to McCain, giving Bush a chance to redeem the mistakes of Katrina and removing the unpopular prez from the convention roster.