A roundup of the little things that may have slipped through the cracks…
1. Americans for Tax Reform President Grover Norquist didn’t attend Ann Romney’s or New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie‘s speeches last night in Tampa. He said today that he was busy doing improv at a comedy club.
2. Star power: President Obama made a campaign stop in Charlottesville, Va., today. The White House pool report says a celebrity showed up: Sissy Spacek, who played the lead role in the horror classic Carrie (1976).
3. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney today told reporters Obama watched ESPN instead of the GOP convention. And tonight on the Late Show with David Letterman, Michelle Obama says: “As the wife of the guy they’re running against, I tend not to watch it.”
4. On HuffPost Live (the Huffington Post‘s online TV network) earlier today, liberal comedian Joy Behar said of Vice Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan: “He’s worse than [Rep. Todd] Akin. He is the devil.” That’s not the full remark, but also not taken out of context.
5. In Sen. Rand Paul‘s (R-Ky.) speech tonight, he called Obama “uniquely unqualified” to be president. A little odd, given that it reprises the description Rick Santorum famously used in the primary for Mitt Romney. Paul also commented on Obamacare: “The whole damn thing is still unconstitutional.”
6. Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s speech was full of the unfunnies. But this line was okay: “It’s hard to say what [Obama’s] worst mistake has been… Joe Biden?”
7. Sen. Rob Portman‘s (R-Ohio) speech was hardly any better. His most unimagintive line, however, got a decent round of applause: “We cannot afford four more years. How about no more years!”
8. The crowd didn’t go too crazy over Sen. John McCain‘s (R-Ariz.) speech. Perhaps because he sounded like he was advocating more war: “We can’t afford to abandon the cause of human freedom. When long suffering peoples demand liberation from their jailers and torturers and tyrants, the leader of the free world must stand with them.” (Full transcript)
9. A video tribute to both former president Bushes played at the convention tonight. George W. is still very unpopular. But his wife Laura remains the most popular of the three most recent first ladies.
10. The last minute of former Sec. of State Condoleezza Rice‘s speech lit up the convention hall. See our writeup.
11. In Ryan’s speech, a particularly devastating description of Obama’s presidency. Ryan called it “a dull, adventureless journey.” Our writeup here.
12. Memorables from New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez‘s speech: She shared the story of her realization that she was a Republican (“I’ll be damned. We’re Republicans.”) And on Obama: “If he can take credit for government buildings small businesses, then he can accept responsibility for breaking his promise and adding $5 trillion to the national debt. Because he did build that.” (Full transcript)
13. Meanwhile, over at Current TV, anchorman Al Gore talks with New York Times columnist Paul Krugman: