Delegates ready to nominate Romney, take on Obama

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August 30th, 2012

Omaha, NE – The Republican National Convention in Tampa wraps up tonight with Presidential candidate Mitt Romney taking the stage. KVNO News’ Lindsey Peterson caught up with Joe Jordan of Nebraska Watchdog, who is at the convention, to see how Republicans are feeling leaving the convention and how that enthusiasm falls into the Nebraska Senate race.

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Lindsey Peterson: Thank you for joining us, Joe. As you know, tonight wraps up the Republican National Convention with a speech from Presidential candidate Mitt Romney. He will also officially accept the party’s nomination. And looking back, Joe, leading up to tonight, would you say the convention has been more about branding Mitt Romney or branding the Republican Party?

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney is scheduled to speak Thursday night and accept the party’s nomination on the final night of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, FL. (Photo credit MittRomney.com)

Joe Jordan: I think this is more about branding Mitt Romney, the Republican Party, when you talk to delegates on the ground in Tampa, these people, these delegates know and believe in the conservative view. Some however, aren’t certain that Romney is quote unquote “one of them.” But he’s their nominee… you ask them why they’re there, they tell you they’re there to end President Obama’s time in the White House. That’s why they’re there.

LP: How does that mentality of stopping President Obama from a second term play into the Nebraska Senate race between Republican Deb Fischer, who spoke at the RNC on Tuesday, and Democrat Bob Kerrey?

JJ: Well, given the fact that Nebraska is an incredibly quote unquote “red state” outside of the Omaha area. And that’s a challenge that Bob Kerrey has statewide is trying convince people as he has in the past, that he’s not necessarily a Democrat or a Republican. That although there’s a “D” after his name he is more of this populist candidate. Deb Fischer is playing up the role that she is the Republican in this race and she will try to stop quote unquote “Obamacare” if she’s elected, and get the country, in her view, back on the right track after what she considers four years of the wrong track.

LP: Would you say that Deb Fischer is appealing more to the base of the Republican Party or is she aiming more for the middle like Bob Kerrey?

JJ: I think she certainly feels to the base, she does that by maintaining that the last four years under Obama has been the wrong way to go whether it’s the “Obamacare” argument or the stimulus argument, argument that that didn’t work that the country is going in the wrong direction as it were. And that appeals to the Republican base. The question is, does it appeal to the Independent voters? Independents in Nebraska tend to be more conservative leaning. But, if Kerrey is going to win this thing, he’s going to need to get a real good chunk of the Independent voters.

LP: So, going into Mitt Romney’s appearance tonight, are you getting a sense of a re-energized and excited Republican Party looking forward to November?

JJ: Well I think the real excitement was last night [Tuesday] with [Vice President candidate]Paul Ryan. He is sort of their real standard bearer in the situation right now. They believe that he is the true conservative of the two. As I said, I’m not sure a lot of them are sold that Mitt Romney is their guy. But he’s the card that they’ve been dealt and they will go with it. Tonight, Romney’s challenge is to try to convince some of these delegates that don’t just vote against Obama, vote for me in the fall. This convention is about getting the base in…and if the base comes out, I think Democrats and Republicans both share this view, getting the base out is going to be incredibly important in November to decide who’s going to win this thing.

LP: That was Joe Jordan of Nebraska Watchdog joining us from Tampa at the Republican National Convention. Thank you, Joe.

JJ: Thanks, take care.

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