Here are the official Republican talking points, being circulated to surrogates speaking on behalf of the party here:
Surrogate Message Points:
2012 Republican National Convention – A Better Future
Top Line Message Points:
· For four days, we will drive stories that will set the coming election in context -- both thematically and through compelling, real-life examples and through powerful, dynamic speakers.
o Overall Theme: A Better Future
§ Monday -- We Can Do Better
§ Tuesday -- We Built It
§ Wednesday -- We Can Change It
§ Thursday – We Believe in America
· The Republican Convention gives us an opportunity to present the American people with a clear contrast between the failed policies of Barack Obama and Governor Romney’s vision for a better future.
· The American people demand and deserve better, and we cannot allow President Obama to continue to run away from, or distract the American people from, his failed policies. The President’s failures have resulted in:
o High unemployment
o Lower take-home pay
o The weakest economic recovery since the Great Depression.
· In contrast to President Obama, we will advance specific polices that Governor Romney and Paul Ryan will implement to grow our economy, help businesses create more jobs and let American families keep more of what they earn.
· Governor Romney is uniquely qualified to be president at this critical time in our nation’s history.
o Family, the organizing principle of his life -- devoted and loving husband and father
o Business career -- Bain and the businesses he saved and jobs he created – adefender of free enterprise
o Public service – Governor of Massachusetts, rescuer of the Olympics
o Faith – integral to his life
· Unprecedented ways to deliver our message and connect with tens of millions of Americans watching each night on television and countless others participating online:
o The podium/Stage, with its 13 LED screens, will provide maximum flexibility to enhance the program with live-stream videos, social network feeds, and panoramic and collage images. The screens allow the stage to be transformed into a factory floor or a Midwest farm.
o Convention Without Walls will utilize multiple social media platforms in ways no convention has ever before attempted in order to create community, engage with Americans and amplify the themes and messages from the convention.
§ Americans across the country and around the globe (working mothers in the Midwest and soldiers stationed overseas alike) will be able to share in the convention experience – unfiltered, uninterrupted and free of charge.
· From the convention, we expect:
o a renewed enthusiasm among supporters and important constituencies
o new opportunities to draw support from target communities
o upward movement in the polls
· Gov. Mitt Romney and Congressman Ryan will be nominated during the 40th Republican National Convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum, August 27-30.
· The Republican Convention will host 2,286 delegates and 2,125 alternate delegates from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories.
· The convention will draw upwards of 50,000 guests to the Tampa Bay area during what is traditionally one of the slowest tourist seasons for the region.
· The event will provide an opportunity for the Tampa Bay area to put its best foot forward in front of a World audience: the convention expects to draw 15,000 credentialed media representatives representing every continent except Antarctica – a press corps twice the size of the Royal Wedding.
· The Republican National Convention will have a total economic impact of at least $153 million in the Tampa Bay area.
· Convention Without Walls -- all of these links are available under the “Features” section on our website:http://www.gopconvention2012.com/features/
o YouTube: www.youtube.com/gopconvention
o Facebook: www.facebook.com/gopconvention
o Twitter: @gopconvention
o Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/gopconvention/
o Twitter: http://twitter.com/GOPconvention
o Google +: http://www.gopconvention2012.com/googleplus
o Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/gopconvention/
o FourSquare: https://foursquare.com/gopconvention
o “Conventional Wisdom” blog: http://www.gopconvention2012.com/blog/
o Instagram: http://web.stagram.com/n/gopconvention/
THEME OF THE 2012 CONVENTION: “A BETTER FUTURE”
· Americans are a determined, hard-working and proud people, but we are now a nation struggling under the weight of unemployment, poverty and debt caused by President Obama’s policies.
· While we are disappointed in the President, we have never lost faith in ourselves and each other, and we know that with capable and courageous leadership, we can restore America’s greatness.
· This week, America will begin to see Mitt Romney’s vision of a future where:
o Free enterprise is nurtured and our children’s successes are celebrated, not attacked;
o Education, hard work and thrift are congratulated and rewarded;
o Taxpayers are respected and government operates within responsible budgets
o Children are more successful than their parents;
o We never waver in our commitment to care for our seniors, the less fortunate and the veterans whose sacrifice made us free.
· This election presents a choice between two different visions for our nation’s future, and how we will address the challenges we face
MONDAY: “WE CAN DO BETTER”
· We reject the notion that Americans should settle for high unemployment, crushing debt and spiraling deficits. They are the result of four years of misguided, liberal policies by this President, whose failures of leadership have created:
o 42 months of unemployment above 8 percent – the longest since the Great Depression
o $5 trillion in added federal debt – almost as much as all previous presidents combined
o $4,300 in lost income for the typical American family
· Americans deserve better. Mitt Romney knows we can do better – and he’s got a plan to make sure of it.
· During this convention week, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan will reach out to a nation starved for leadership and put forward a bold, achievable plan to strengthen the middle class – a strategy for more jobs and more take-home pay.
TUESDAY: “WE BUILT IT”
· Barack Obama’s “you didn’t build it” remarks were an insult to every small business owner and hard-working American.
· The President’s words prove he doesn’t understand what made our nation great -- not government, but individuals working in a free enterprise system that lets us strive toward our goals without government blocking our path
· Americans look at one another’s success with pride, not resentment, because we know that as more Americans work hard, take risks, and succeed, more people will prosper, our communities will benefit and individual lives will be improved and uplifted
· Tonight we will hear from Republican governors who know what it takes for America’s true “builders” to create jobs and prosper: lower taxes and spending, reduced debt and less red tape.
· While these Governors have had some success, the Obama administration’s policies have hindered their work and stifled economic growth in their states.
· Mitt Romney knows that the ones who really “built it” are the men and women who made America the exceptional nation it is. He will support policies that give them the tools and the freedom they need to create prosperity-- and let them keep more of what they earn.
WEDNESDAY: “WE CAN CHANGE IT”
• Mitt Romney’s “Plan for a Stronger Middle Class” will help restore America as the best place in the world to find a job, start a business, or hire a worker.
• In his first term as president, Mitt Romney’s plan will lead to a recovery that:
o Creates 12 million jobs
o Grows the economy on average by 4 percent per year
• His plan will work toward energy independence, ensure that middle-class Americans have the skills to succeed, pursue trade that works for America, cut the deficit, and champion small business.
• As president, Mitt Romney will:
o Encourage job creation, once again making America the best place in the world to start a business, invest capital, and grow
o Increase domestic energy production and eliminate job-killing regulations, so that energy will be both affordable and more reliable
o Give every family access to a great school, quality teachers, and affordable, effective higher-education options
o Open new markets for American goods and services and strengthen free enterprise around the world
o Eliminate barriers to job creation by reforming the tax code and lowering individual rates across the board
o Repeal and replace Obamacare – a $1 trillion federal takeover of health care that will stifle hiring and increase premiums – with real reforms that control costs and improve care
o Immediately cut spending and root out inefficiencies, making government smaller, simpler, and smarter – and less costly for taxpayers
THURSDAY: “WE BELIEVE IN AMERICA”
Governor Mitt Romney is uniquely qualified to handle the challenges facing our nation at this critical time:
· He is a devoted and loving family man whose wife, children and grandchildren form the core of his values and are the foundation for his life.
· He is a generous and caring member of the community, counseling others through life’s challenges, from unemployment and illness to helping them find spiritual meaning in their lives.
· He has a proven record of real-world job creation, which is what we need to turn our economy around and strengthen the middle class:
o He spent a lifetime creating good, high-paying jobs, helping start and build successful businesses and turning around failing ones, including well-known companies like Bright Horizons, Sports Authority and Staples.
· He rescued the scandal-plagued 2002 Winter Olympics from deep debt by overhauling its leadership, trimming its budget and regaining the public’s trust.
o His leadership averted a potential national embarrassment and transformed the Salt Lake City Olympics into one of the best-run Games ever.
· While he was Governor, Massachusetts added tens of thousands of jobs and the state’s unemployment rate fell below 5%.
· Over the course of his term, Massachusetts moved up 21 spots in job creation, from 51st in the nation to 30th.
· The state added more than 40,000 payroll jobs during his final year in office – the best year of job growth in the state in the last decade.
· During Governor Romney’s time in office, per capita income grew by 14%, outpacing the country at large.
Top Line Surrogate Message Points: RNC Convention Program Changes in Preparation for Tropical Storm Isaac
- First and foremost, our chief priority is the safety of the residents of Florida, visiting RNC Convention delegates and guests and those in Gulf Coast states who may be impacted by Tropical Storm Isaac.
- RNC Convention officials and the Romney Campaign are working closely with state, local and federal officials, as well the secret service, to monitor Tropical Storm Isaac and emergency management preparations.
- In an abundance of caution and to ensure the safety of our delegates, guests, visiting friends and family and Florida residents, the Republican National Convention will convene on Monday August 27th and immediately recess until Tuesday afternoon, August 28th. Decisions on program planning for the week will be made in concert and with the guidance of state and local emergency management officials.
- Based on our conversations with Florida Governor Rick Scott, NOAA and local emergency management officials, we remain very optimistic that the convention will be able to resume on Tuesday.
- The RNC Convention staff is working closely with Delegates to keep them informed and updated on the latest weather developments. We are encouraging Delegates, guests and all of those in town for the Convention to heed any precautions encouraged by local officials.
- We will remain in continual contact with Governor Scott and local emergency officials and will provide additional updates as conditions warrant.
TROPICAL STORM ISAAC Q&A
- Will the speakers scheduled for Monday night’s program be rescheduled for later in the week?
· We are folding the program elements of Monday night into the rest of the week.
- Who made the decision to cancel Monday’s events?
· The Romney-Ryan campaign, the RNC, and the Committee on Arrangements in consultation with emergency management officials collectively made the decision to postpone Monday’s events.
- When did you make this decision and what was the process behind it?
· After a series of calls with Governor Scott’s office and local emergency response officials, the Romney-Ryan campaign, the RNC, and the Committee on Arrangements decided Saturday afternoon to postpone Monday’s events.
- If late Sunday and Monday flights are cancelled, do you anticipate delegates will be able to arrive in time for Tuesday’s events?
· Our first priority is to ensure delegates arrive in a safe manner and we anticipate a majority of delegates will be able to arrive for Tuesday’s events.
- Are you still encouraging delegates to maintain their travel schedule and arrive in Tampa on Sunday or Monday?
· For those whose travel arrangements are not affected, we encourage them to proceed with their travel plans.
- If the storm is particularly strong, are you prepared to cancel Tuesday’s events as well?
· Based on our conversations with Florida Governor Rick Scott, NOAA and local emergency management officials, we remain very optimistic that the convention will be able to resume on Tuesday.
- Are you planning on evacuating any of the convention attendees?
· Working closely with local emergency management teams, we will be following their suggestions regarding any evacuation of convention attendees.
- We have recently spoken with someone from the National Weather Service and they discussed the possibility of large tidal surges, and threats of high winds. With this as a possibility, can you say today that you will be able to start the convention in 72 hours?
· To start off, our first priority is for the safety of the people of Florida and the Gulf Coast along with the delegates, alternate delegates, guests, friends and families who have traveled to the Tampa/St. Petersburg area for the upcoming convention. We are working closely with state, local and federal officials to track the storm. We will remain in continual contact with Governor Scott and local emergency officials and will provide additional updates as conditions warrant.
- If the storm makes landfall Wednesday and inflicts serious damage in the communities it hits, will you continue with the convention?
· While we remain hopeful that the storm’s impact will be minimal, we will continue to monitor the situation and act accordingly.