(08/22/12) - In just a few days, Republicans will gather in Tampa, Florida to officially nominate Mitt Romney for president. Democrats will do the same for President Obama in Charlotte, North Carolina a week later.
The stage is set for the 2012 Republican National Convention. This weekend, more than 4,000 delegates and alternates from all 50 states and five territories will converge on Tampa.
"The most important role of our delegates has to be officially confirming the nomination of Mitt Romney as our party's nominee," said Tim Miller, Republican National Committee deputy communications director.
Miller says some delegates are already hard at work on the GOP platform. Miller says the Platform Committee is discussing their stance on spending, debt, the economy and foreign policy.
"Once those recommendations are made by the select delegates who got to be part of the Platform Committee, it will go to the full delegation next week in Tampa," Miller said.
Miller says the convention will be the most accessible to date, thanks to technology.
"If folks don't get to go to Tampa next week, they'll be able to watch the entire convention from their couch or their desk at work," he said.
Democrats say their convention, a week after the Republicans', will be even more accessible, as they hold two public events – a street party in Uptown Charlotte called "Carolina Fest," and President Obama and Vice-President Biden's nomination speech at Bank of America Stadium.
"It's just an accessible convention, a warm convention, and a chance for Democrats to come together, and get ready for the general election," said Democratic National Committee secretary Alice Germond, who will be calling the roll at their convention. "It's truly democracy and representative government at its most basic. That's why I believe the roll call is so meaningful."
And after all the formalities are said and done, both parties are going to party.
"This is going to be an incredibly fun convention," Germond said.
"Hopefully we'll be able to have a little fun, there's lots of exciting stuff going on down there," Miller said.
One thing that could dampen the Republican Convention – literally speaking – is Tropical Storm Isaac, which is churning in the Caribbean right now. Tampa's mayor says organizers are prepared to call the convention off, and that politics comes second to people's safety.