Views From Tampa: The Turista Caucus

by Jason Tolbert ([email protected]) 123 views 

Arkansas delegates to the Republican National Convention will be submitting guest posts this week from Tampa.  This one is from Pulaski GOP Chairman K. Ryan James.

Back home in Little Rock, I am a part-time member of the Burger Caucus.  It’s a great group of people and our conversations are always entertaining.

Down here in Tampa, I have been blessed to be a part of another great group of people as I participate as an Alternate Delegate at the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida.

We are the Turista Caucus. No formal vote was taken. I just snapped a picture of us in Centro Ybor, gave it a caption and uploaded it to my Instagram account.

Boom.

The Turista Caucus consists of Reps. Duncan Baird, John Burris, Ann Clemmer and Andrea Lea along with Tim Griffin campaign manager Mitchell Lowe and Alex Reed of the Secretary of State’s office.

It was an opportunity to talk and get to know each other outside of the context of our normal interaction

The conversation today was laid back, thus confirming the “Changes in Latitudes” axiom put forward by the noted Floridian philosopher Buffett.  The laid back atmosphere belies the importance of the next several days.

While presidential nominating conventions have evolved away from the drama of the past, their importance has not diminished.  For the next few days, the eyes of the world will be focused here where several of my colleagues and friends will be putting forward the notion that we can do better the next four years under the leadership of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan than we have been doing the last four years under Barack Obama and Joe Biden.

There is no doubt in my mind that we can do better.

While I was writing this, I received my credentials for the week.  While I was proud to get them, I will admit that I miss the all-access ones I had in Minnesota.