Palo Alto Patch is committed to in-depth coverage of the 2012 elections, from the local school board to the presidential race.
Republicans and Democrats will hold their national conventions over the next few weeks. The GOP will take center stage next week as the Republican National Convention is held in Tampa. Democrats will converge on Charlotte the following week.
We contacted our local delegates to both conventions and asked them an identical set of questions. For fairness, we are publishing them side-by-side.
Rick Holbrook of Holbrook Global Strategies in Palo Alto is a delegate to the RNC.
How did you become a delegate for the Republican National Convention?
To become a delegate, I submitted an application with the California Romney leadership last March. In May, I was notified that I was selected and I was very excited as this will be my first convention to attend. I have been working as a volunteer fundraiser for Mitt and I assume that was a positive factor in the selection process.
Why did you want to become one?
I wanted to become one to see what a National Convention was like first hand after having watched them on TV for many years. I particularly believe that our country needs a change in direction and that Mitt Romney has the skills and background to provide us the change in leadership we need. To be there as a delegate to participate in his nomination will be an exciting thing.
What are you doing to prepare for the Convention?
To prepare for the convention, I am doing a lot of reading to keep up on the issues that matter most to our country. I am looking forward to meeting and talking with fellow delegates about the issues that affect our country the most.
What do you hope to take away from the Convention?
I think I will learn a lot from the convention. First, I will gain a better understanding of the process of nominating a candidate. The Republican Party will be having some of its top leaders speak at the Convention, of course, and there will be a lot of good ideas in their talks to think about in terms of the direction we need to go as a country. I hope to come back with an expanded understanding of the issues that matter most at this time in our country, and hope to be able to share that understanding with friends and colleagues here in the Bay Area.
Who are you most looking forward to rubbing elbows with?
Many of the leaders of the Republican Party will be there; I am not sure how much one on one time there will be though to meet and talk with them. To the extent there is, that will be a great bonus. In general though, I am looking forward to the chance to talk with fellow delegates from all over the country, to learn about the issues that matter most in their areas, and discuss how we can create better solutions for all Americans.
What important issues do you want to address with other delegates at the Convention?
Some of the key issues that I am focused on are the economy and job creation. My work is as an investment advisor, and I pay a lot of attention to our economy and the status of working Americans. The enormous growth in government spending, with exploding budget deficits is another area of concern that we must address. Finding ways to save Social Security, Medicare and other benefits is important, as they will become insolvent as they are currently structured.
How important is it to represent your community at the Convention?
I am proud to represent our community at the Convention. Palo Alto is a special place, and is blessed to be at the heart of the technology industry. In many ways we have fared better than most of the country over the past several years, and yet we have the opportunity to help in creating the best solutions for the problems that our nation is facing going forward.
Rick Holbrook has agreed to blog for Palo Alto Patch from the Republican National Convention. Watch for his posts next week.
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