The roads have been repaved, the bars stocked and the popcorn swept out of the Excel Energy Center’s aisles. It’s only a few days until the Republicans storm the beachhead and impose their flag waving and slogan chanting on the good people of Saint Paul, Minnesota.
It might seem odd that a state that usually votes Democrat when it comes to president is playing host to John McCain. Sure, Minnesota has a Republican governor, but he’s more of a centrist than McCain, and his opponent in the last election had so much baggage that he laid down and gave up halfway through the race.
No, the RNC is not really about politics for the Twin Cities. It’s about a couple of underrated, mid-sized cities trying to get some respect. It’s about showing off the nightlife and restaurants (hey Andrew Zimmern chose St. Paul over New York, so there must be something good about the eating scene). It’s about showing the nation that Chicago isn’t the only game in the Midwest.
To be clear, the convention will be in Saint Paul, but, Minneapolis (pictured above) is a mere 10 minute drive down Highway 94. Logistically, at least, they can be considered different parts of one big city. I’ll be in the Twin Cities next week, letting you in on some of the cities’ highlights and, perhaps, bringing you a report on the crazy nightlife habits of young Republicans. Stay tuned.