Posted: Aug. 27, 2004


Conventional Republicans

Delaware's Republican delegates will be traveling to New York City on Sunday for their national convention, and from the looks of the schedule, they will be immersed in the thick of the atmosphere as soon as they arrive.

There is a demonstration planned outside their hotel.

Not that the Republicans have anything to fear from this rally. It is being held by the Christian Defense Coalition. A year ago this group was in the forefront of the efforts to prevent the removal of the rocklike statue of the 10 Commandments from the Alabama Supreme Court.

About the worst that could happen to the Delawareans is probably a strenuous invitation to join a prayer vigil.

The demonstration is supposed to be held on the streets around the Millenium Hilton, the hotel where the Delawareans are staying in lower Manhattan on the edge of the World Trade Center site. The state is sending 18 delegates, 15 alternates and numerous guests. U.S. Rep. Michael N. Castle is the delegation chair.

As a matter of coincidence, the Christian Defense Coalition sponsored a demonstration for the Democratic national convention in front of the Boston Park Plaza, a hotel where the Delaware Democrats were staying near the Boston Common.

Not that the Democrats had anything to fear from that rally, either. The coalition gathered on Saturday, July 24, and the Delawareans did not have to be in town until Sunday. They never saw it.

Carper signs up

When Max Cleland, the Democratic ex-senator from Georgia, took a letter protesting the Swift Boat Veterans' political spot to Crawford, Texas, for the president, one of the signatures on it belonged to U.S. Sen. Thomas R. Carper.

The letter was signed by nine Democratic senators who were in the military. Carper, a Vietnam War era veteran who flew reconnaissance in Southeast Asia, was in the Navy from 1968 to 1973 and also served in the Naval Reserve.

In addition to Carper, the signers were Daniel K. Akaka of Hawaii, Jon Corzine of New Jersey, Tom Harkin of Iowa, Ernest F. "Fritz" Hollings of South Carolina, Daniel K. Inouye of Hawaii, Frank R. Lautenberg of New Jersey, Bill Nelson of Florida and Jack Reed of Rhode Island.

Carper's participation came at the request of the Kerry campaign, according to Bill Ghent, the Delaware senator's press secretary. "They asked him to join in a letter signed by the Democratic veterans in the Senate," Ghent said.

Taking the political air

William Swain Lee, the Republican candidate for governor, expects to be running political spots on cable television and radio beginning Monday, about two weeks after Gov. Ruth Ann Minner, the Democratic incumbent, opened up the campaign air wars.

The advertising will be broadcast in all three counties, according to Donald C. Mell, a senior adviser to Lee's campaign. He described it as positive in tone, biographical in content.

The spots will run through the primary election on Sept. 11, when Lee, who has the Republican Party's endorsement, faces two minor candidates for the nomination. What Lee will do with his advertising afterwards is not decided yet.

"We really have to reset our clocks after the primary," Mell said.