Politico is pleased to tell us that the “GOP Hopes to Stay out of Trouble in Tampa“:
House Republicans are officially worried that lawmakers and staffers will stray off the straight-and- narrow path at the GOP convention in Tampa this month.
With the advent of cell phones, anyone can be an opposition tracker, so members should be wary of doing anything questionable in public, Rep. Pete Sessions, the National Republican Congressional Committee chairman, warned fellow Republicans at a Capitol Hill meeting Wednesday.
“Let’s say you are going to have a cup of coffee. Perhaps, it’s a late night cup of coffee. Be careful,” the Texas Republican said at a conference committee meeting, according to several sources who attended…
Coffee, of course, is one of the many adult beverages which presumptive nominee Willard “Mitt” Romney does not drink. There is reason to believe some of his fellow Republicans lack such stern moral fibre. Politico finds one of them:
Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele said he wasn’t surprised there were worries.
“People get uptight about that stuff,” Steele said. “The Romney campaign is going to want a convention that is going to be much more reflective of his style.”
Steele knows firsthand how a scandal can cause issues for a political brand. He was ultimately lost his bid for another term as head of the party committee after news reports revealed that the RNC paid for donors at a strip club.
Steele, who said he didn’t want to “comment on anybody and their extracurricular activities,” said if convention officials tried to stop strip clubs from doing business, it could lead to even more harmful stories.
“People have an opportunity to make some money, take advantage of all these visitors coming to Tampa for five days or more, and so I don’t blame them for that,” he added…
Shorter Steele: Why does the Romney campaign want to punish America’s small businessmen, and women, in the hard-hit adult entertaiment sector?
And yet somehow one doubts that the restless Republican delegates will be satisfied with the sort of respectful family-friendly “pagentry and spectacle” described by the snoopy secularists at TNR:
As darkness fell on the wooded slopes of the Hill Cumorah on Friday, July 20, hundreds of costumed performers made their way through a crowd of Mormon faithful and a handful of non-Mormon onlookers. They had gathered at the birthplace of the Mormon religion—Mormons believe that Joseph Smith, with the guidance of the Angel Moroni, first found the gold plates of the Book of Mormon buried on the hillside—in order to witness the penultimate performance of the seventy-fifth annual Hill Cumorah Pageant, which consists of scenes from the Mormon scripture, such as “The Resurrected Christ Appears to Ancient Americans.”
The Pageant is a Broadway-style event (last year, a critic compared it to “Spider Man”), with a volunteer cast of 750, a score featuring the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, elaborate lighting, overwrought costumes, and detailed choreography. Every July come Pageant time, an infusion of visitors who outnumber the local population many times over “provides a real shot in the arm for the local economy,” according to Beth Hoad, a longtime dairy farmer and historian of the nearby town of Palmyra, NY, where the Smith family farmhouse is located….
Despite its missionary ambitions, in practice the pageant is an insular LDS event, and it was unsurprising to discover that the Mormons who attended the spectacle were not closely attuned to outside attention. Hardly anyone at all was eager to discuss the spotlight that Mitt Romney’s campaign has directed towards their religion. “I don’t feel any different as a Mormon now than I did before,” said RJ Mattei, recently returned to Dallas from his mission in Salt Lake City. “But it’s honestly hard to say. It’s totally separate from anything I pay attention to.” Numbers from recent Pew polls do, in fact, suggest that Americans, even as they become more accepting of Mormons, aren’t learning (and aren’t interested in learning) much about Mormon beliefs. In reciprocation, the Mormons I met at the pageant have decided to tune out all of the newfound attention, insisting almost unanimously that they do not feel substantially different about themselves or their place in society now that one of their co-religionists is on the precipice of becoming president….
Back in D.C., I called Orson Scott Card, who wrote the script for the pageant. He is best known as the author of Ender’s Game, a science fiction classic about a child prodigy who battles aliens (Mitt Romney’s favorite novel, according to the Washington Post). A devout Mormon, Card rejected the idea that 2012 is positive time for the LDS Church. “The Romney candidacy is potentially a disaster for the things that matter most for the Church,” he said. “That last thing we need is for people around the world seeing the Church as an instrument of American foreign policy. We have enough trouble as it is getting our missionaries into countries that have bad relationship with America.”
I asked him why the Mormons at the pageant seemed so impervious to politics. “It’s not that we don’t care,” he said. “It’s that we don’t care as Mormons.” In the pageant parking lot, I saw license plates from 33 states, but not a single Romney bumper sticker.
You know, it’s almost begining to seem as though nobody much likes Mitt Romney, or cares about his hopes and dreams…