Kansas City, MO – Thirty-two years after taking a local host role at a GOP convention, Kansas Citian Jim Chappel is a voting delegate at the Republican national nominating process in St. Paul.
The 65-year old Northland restauranteur misses the vibrancy of that 1976 Kansas City convention when there was a fight for a nominee. Gerald Ford stayed at the Westin, Ronald Reagan at the then-Alameda hotel. It was a back and forth back battleground of words and tactics until Ford got the nod.
Nothing like it now said Chappel, who stopped to talk on a crowded shuttle bus from the Minnesota convention hall. Chappel said, "Most of us are McCain delegates. There's a few Ron Paul ones but I don't know if that's going anywhere. Well, I know that's not going anywhere...Even though it's very festive, it's business to get things, to get him inaugurated, I mean nominated and acceptance speeches and to show off the party."
As other Missouri Republican delegates and observers have suggested, vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin will be a great asset to the party if she can get through this month without a major, or a series of smaller missteps.