Friday May 04, 2012 | 11:20 AM

Sounds like it's a good idea to arrive early Saturday morning to the Republican Convention, just in case there's a battle over who will serve as convention chairman.

As my colleague Steve Mistler noted yesterday, GOP Chairman Charlie Webster is asking delegates to arrive at 8:15 a.m. because he's heard rumblings that the Ron Paul campaign plans to "take over" the convention. A few days ago, a State House Republican also advised me not to miss the procedural stuff at the beginning, including the selection of a convention chairman and adoption of party rules.

Other things I'll be watching:

*Adoption of the platform. Two years ago, I was up in the crows nest barely paying attention to the platform discussion when I began to realize something was different. The Tea Party successfully put a new platform in place, catching many of the mainline Republicans completely off guard.

*Speeches by the four Congressional candidates. While I've heard Senate President Kevin Raye and Senate Majority Leader Jon Courtney speak many times, I've not seen (or heard) Patrick Calder from Portland or Blaine Richardson of Belfast.

*Gov. LePage's speech on Sunday. The governor pretty much always makes news, especially if he wanders from his prepared speech.

*Sen. Snowe's speech, which will immediately follow the governor's address. Will she blast both parties for their conduct in Washington? Or will she take a softer tone?

*The six Senate candidates. Who gets the most applause? Who comes out swinging? Who packs the stage with supporters? Have many delegates already made up their minds?

It'll be a busy weekend. Check back frequently for updates from me and Steve.


About the Author

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Open Season is your guide to the 2014 campaign. Our team of political writers has its sights set on Maine’s major elections, from the Blaine House to the U.S. Capitol.

Steve Mistler is covering the 2014 governor's race. He covers politics and government for the Portland Press Herald. He spends a lot of time in the hallways of the State House.
Steve can be reached at 791-6345 or
On Twitter: @stevemistler

Eric Russell is covering Independent Eliot Cutler during the 2014 governor's race. He is a general assignment reporter for the Portland Press Herald.
Eric can be reached at 791-6344 or
On Twitter: @pphericrussell

Matt Byrne is covering Republican Paul LePage during the 2014 governor's race. He covers Falmouth, Cumberland, North Yarmouth, Yarmouth and Freeport for the Portland Press Herald.
Matt can be reached at 791-6303 or
On Twitter: @mattbyrnePPH

Randy Billings is covering Democrat Mike Michaud during the 2014 governor's race. He covers Portland City Hall for the Portland Press Herald.
Randy can be reached at 791-6346 or
On Twitter: @randybillings

Kevin Miller is covering Maine's U.S. Senate race and 1st Congressional District race. He covers politics and government for the Portland Press Herald.
Kevin can be reached at 317-6256 or
On Twitter: @kevinmillerdc

Michael Shepherd is covering Maine's 2nd Congressional District race. He is a news and State House reporter for the Kennebec Journal.
Michael can be reached at 621-5632 or
On Twitter: @mikeshepherdME

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