First lady Bush cancels talk in St Paul; Obama will send e-mails
Sep 1, 2008, 3:52 GMT
Washington - First lady Laura Bush cancelled an appearance for Monday near the Republican convention city of St Paul, Minnesota, as the party readjusted its schedule to accommodate the impending drama of Hurricane Gustav.
On Sunday, President George W Bush cancelled his speech which was to be the centre point of Monday's convention opening.
Instead, he will travel to Texas to be near headquarters for federal operations during the category 3 storm, which was expected to make landfall by noontime (1500 GMT).
Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, whose nomination was sealed last week at the Democratic convention in Denver, Colorado, said that he would activate 'an e-mail list of a couple of million people' once it was determined what the needs are in the storm-hit Gulf Coast.
'We want to find out what's most helpful ... I think we can get tons of volunteers to travel down there if it becomes necessary,' he said in broadcast remarks.
Laura Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney had been slated to join the president Monday on the podium of the convention, which is preparing to nominate Senator John McCain for the presidency.
But the presumptive Republican nominee John McCain and party organizers decided to cut the programme back to official business and avoid political rhetoric as the nation prepared for a potential natural disaster.
The event that first lady Bush cancelled was a joint appearance with Cindy McCain in Minneapolis, which is near St Paul. She did not specify why she had cancelled.