This post will have to be short as I have just returned exhausted from a day of media activities and parties and am obligated to wake up at 6:30 tomorrow for a radio interview with WMAL.
This eventful day began in pretty much the same manner: a buffet breakfast. After enjoying the hotel's delicious waffles for the third time, I journeyed with fellow delegate, Erin Smith, into Tampa. Although we had been assured that the pre-convention passes I had been issued would get both us beyond the Berlin-Wall-like perimeter, the gate attendants kindly informed us that we needed special credentials. Already late for an interview with CBS Channel One, I was rushed some credentials by an RNC official while Erin waited patiently in Tampa nearby.
After interviewing with CBS, I was able to borrow an official's credentials to get Erin within the perimeter. We then both participated in a delegate surrogate phone call, during which my POLITICO profile was shown on CSPAN (I'm expecting a commission from the Sperrys company).
Following a quick lunch, I was pulled from the "hub" again by an AP reporter eager to set up an interview for the next morning. From this exchange, I proceeded directly to an interview with NBC4 News, a Washington affiliate for the national broadcasting network. Erin Smith proved an invaluable resource the entire day, keeping me grounded, organized, and constantly informed.
By the time I finished the interview, we were already late for the RNC's welcome party at Tropicana field. We rushed over to the location where my dad and Phil Griffin held our credentials to get in the party. After walking for twenty minutes around the perimeter to an entrance, it turned out to be a separate entrance from where our guests agreed to meet us. Eventually a Secret Service agent on a John Deere golf cart kindly agreed to go procure our credentials from them for us (as he said, "service" is part of the title).
The celebration was amazing! A pig roast, hot cheerleaders, a baseball diamond, country music... the RNC must have planned that party with me in mind! The highlight of the night came when Rodney Atkins appeared on stage. Ryan Thomas or Marta Saltus will never doubt my commitment to country music again after witnessing me successfully sing every word of "Farmer's Daughter."
Finally, we boarded a bus back to the hotel where another party was being held for the Virginia delegation. Fearing that I was losing my voice and acknowledging the early hour I would have to rise tomorrow, I came to the room around midnight to write this post and fall asleep, which should not be too hard!
Here is a quick summary of my media appearances to look for tomorrow:
1) 6:35 AM- WMAL Radio
2) 7:35 AM- WRVA Radio
3) POLITICO TV- 2:00-3:00 PM
4) NBC4- Time TBD
5) Associated Press- Time TBD
6) CNN- Time TBD