Polls: Romney got small RNC bump
A couple of new polls indicate Mitt Romney didn't hugely benefit from the Republican National Convention last week in Tampa. First, a new robo poll by the Democratic firm Public Policy Polling shows no post-convention bounce. The poll found President Barack Obama with 48 percent support in Florida and Romney with 47 percent, exactly the same numbers as PPP's last poll five weeks ago. Second, a new Gallup poll released Mondays shows Americans scored Romney's convention speech the lowest since Bob Dole's acceptance speech in 1996. Only 38 percent of respondents said that Romney's speech was "excellent" or "good." That figure is lower than Sen. John McCain's in 2008 (47 percent), Obama's in that same year (58 percent), George W. Bush's in 2004 (49 percent) and John Kerry's that same year (52 percent). Also, 40 percent of voters said that after the convention they were more likely to support Romney for president, compared with 38 percent who were less likely — a net impact of +2. This is the lowest net impact for a convention going back to 1984. By comparison, the 2008 GOP convention featuring McCain was +5, and that year's Democratic convention nominating Obama was +14.
GOP chair happy to see Crist at DNC
Republican Party of Florida Chairman Lenny Curry sent this snarky letter to DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz with a preview of what Charlie Crist might say this week in Charlotte: You and President Obama have invited our former Governor to address your party's national convention. In a spirit of bipartisan cooperation, I thought it would be beneficial for you to get a preview of some of the messages you could hear from Charlie Crist. I think you'll find Crist's comments of interest. (Links to video.) Please don't misunderstand me. If you want to give speaking slots to people who compare President Obama to Jimmy Carter, declare their support for Sarah Palin, and do all this while identifying themselves as "Ronald Reagan Republicans," I can understand why. Because returning to the conservative principles of the Republican Party is the only way we can get our country back on the path to prosperity.
Betty White: Hot in Charlotte?
Actor Betty White is being called on by fans to speak at this week's Democratic National Convention. The 90-year-old star, who's an Obama supporter, is not scheduled to appear, but there's a petition circulating online urging White to introduce the president Thursday. "Governor Romney can have Clint Eastwood and his improvisational skills because President Obama has the one and only Betty White!" the petition reads. It's been signed by more than 2,500 people on Change.org. White has even more fans asking for the speech on Facebook, where nearly 20,000 have "liked" the page titled "Bring Betty White to the DNC." White responded to a similar social media push two years ago. In 2010, she hosted Saturday Night Live after a Facebook campaign encouraging the appearance went viral.
Sugar daddy website's traffic up during RNC
An unorthodox dating website reports receiving a boost in Tampa-based traffic last week, with unflattering implications for attendees of the Republican National Convention. SeekingArrangement.com, a "sugar daddy dating website," claims that it saw a 25.9 percent increase in Web traffic originating from Tampa during the GOP convention. This compares with a 2.2 percent drop in traffic from the state of Florida overall, according to the website. "While overall traffic originating from Florida fell this past week because of Hurricane Isaac, we saw a significant increase in traffic from Tampa where the Republicans held their national convention," Brandon Wade, the site's founder and CEO, said in a press release. The website also noted that 42.1 percent of Sugar Daddy members are Republicans, compared to 34.9 percent who are Democrats.
Times staff writers Adam C. Smith and Alex Leary contributed, along with Caitlin McDevitt and Tim Mak of POLITICO.