Senator John McCain will take center stage tonight to accept his party’s nomination for President. The big question, of course, is whether McCain will be able to top Sarah Palin’s speech and drive home his appeal to the conservative base.
Video from the Associated Press of the stage being revamped for McCain:
Report from MyWay on McCain’s big night:
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Convention workers hurriedly rebuilt the stage where John McCain will formally accept the Republican Party’s presidential nomination Thursday night, embarking on his final drive for the White House after a vigorous sendoff boost from running mate Sarah Palin.
Elsewhere, on the final day of the Republican National Convention, a lot of the talk was still about Palin, who gave her big introductory speech Wednesday night, less than a week after being chosen for the ticket.
McCain’s wife, Cindy, suggested in one interview that she doesn’t agree with Palin’s support for a nearly total ban on abortions.
And Democratic vice presidential nominee Joe Biden declared that some news coverage of his Republican counterpart had been sexist.
Parts of the platform at the Xcel Energy Center were removed by construction workers on Thursday to bring delegates closer to where McCain will give his acceptance speech, giving the stage a T-shape. Organizers said the change reflected the town hall-type forums in which McCain has campaigned.
“The extended podium will serve as a fitting complement to John McCain’s preference for direct interaction with his fellow citizens,” said Maria Cino, a convention official.
Meanwhile, party leaders added two speakers to the night’s lineup. Former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., will speak prior to Cindy McCain. Both are close to McCain. Ridge was considered a finalist for the No. 2 spot before McCain picked the Alaska governor. And Graham has appeared frequently with McCain on the campaign trail.
Delegates will also vote Thursday night to make the convention’s nomination of Palin official. And McCain himself will close out the activities with his prime-time acceptance speech.
We’ll have all the coverage later including the entire video of McCain’s speech. I’ll update again with the actual speech times but everything will lead off around 10pm eastern with McCain.
Stay tuned for the evening’s events…
The schedule tonight was massive, dozens of speakers at all levels in the Republican ranks. I will try to be featuring the main speeches of the most nationally known individuals.
Florida Senator Mel Martinez:
Minnesota Governor, and one of McCain’s considered VP choices, Tim Pawlenty:
Former Tennessee Senator Bill Frist:
Kansas Senator and former Republican Presidential candidate Sam Brownback:
South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham:
Former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge:
Senator McCain’s biographical video played before his speech:
Here is Senator McCain’s entire acceptance speech:
For McCain, the speech was delivered well, however, the entire convention center seemed to lack the energy which was present during Sarah Palin’s acceptance speech last night. McCain hit some specifics on issues which his Democratic opponents had criticized the convention for lacking during the first few days.
Reaction from media sources:
Fox News w/ Rush Limbaugh:
Tomorrow I will have a complete wrap-up of both conventions and some comparing and contrasting of Obama and McCain’s respective speeches.