Mr. Engelbach Goes to Tampa

29 Aug

Our pal George Engelbach, Jefferson County Republican Central Committee member, former state representative, current member of the Jefferson College Board of Trustees and the county’s 911 dispatch board of directors, and county council district 4 candidate (fresh off a 4-vote primary triumph), is down in Tampa for the GOP convention, and he’s all decked out in Abe Lincoln regalia (I had thought that he bore a resemblance). This is getting him some attention, first from NBC’s Luke Russert:

And also from Business Insider, which was interested not just in his costume, but his disappointment with the convention:

This year’s convention is a little bit of a let-down, Engelbach said, noting that this is the fourth consecutive convention he has attended.

“I’ve been involved in the Republican Party for a long-time,” he told me. “And I can tell you, things are a little different this year. For example, at other conventions, usually they have two venues as big as this one, and one of them is just filled with vendors selling all sorts of things. But at this one, there are hardly any vendors at all. There’s just the one venue.”

For a more substantive critique:

The other surprising difference this year has been the change in schedule, Engelbach said, referring to the convention committee’s decision to move the state roll call and the nomination of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan to the afternoon of the first day of the convention. In the past, the roll call and the nominations — the entire reason for the convention in the first place — are held during primetime on the last two nights of the convention.

“So I guess we can all go home now,” Engelbach said, laughing.

I’d argue that the roll call is not the point, but is instead a formality. The speeches are the thing these days. In political news, Engelbach is apparently standing with Todd Akin:

Engelbach, who describes himself as pro-life “through and through and through,” is also frustrated with the party’s treatment of his state’s U.S. Senate candidate, Todd Akin, who Engelbach describes as “just an incredible individual.” 

“He made a mistake, and he’s asked for forgiveness,” Engelbach said. “If they put as much effort into helping save his campaign as they have put into attacking him, he would win the race, no doubt.” 

Finally, he touches upon the Jefferson County caucus:

Jefferson County was the site of a major battle between longtime party stalwarts, like Engelbach, and supporters of Ron Paul, who teamed up with “the Tea Party people” to push through a slate of delegates.

“That was a very laborious day,” Engelbach told me. “But in the end, we outmaneuvered them.” 

“Outmaneuvered” is one way to put it. They actually concealed the roll sheets for a time, in order to encourage frustrated Ron Paul fans to give up and go home before the event wrapped up 9.5 hours after it started.

He closes with some red meat:

“Even a piece of driftwood from the Mississippi River would be better than the guy we have up there right now.”

Here’s a more light-hearted interview. Check my Twitter feed on the right for more photos of George as Abe at the RNC.


One Response to “Mr. Engelbach Goes to Tampa”

  1. Matt Hay September 1, 2012 at 1:04 pm #

    You missed the most flabbergasting of all the interviews. This is a double-down on Todd Akin’s type of stupid:


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