Tropical Storm Isaac is whipping through Haiti on its way to a possible landing at the United States Republican Convention in Tampa, Florida. The storm developed on August 21st, and turned into a named tropical storm on August 22nd, 2012.
Flights Cancelled, Puerto Rico Shuts Down
Mid-week flights were cancelled to Dominica, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guadeloupe and Martinique. On Thursday, residents in Puerto Rico were urged to stay home until the storm has passed. Isaac is expected to move through Puerto Rico late Thursday, August 23rd. Government agencies in Puerto Rico are closed and Governor Luis Fortuno has declared a state of emergency and has activated the National Guard.
Isaac Could Blast the GOP Convention in Tampa, Florida
According to NASA, Isaac initially formed from a tropical wave, moving off of the coast of Africa on August 17, 2012. Now that it’s a full-fledged tropical storm, Isaac is expected gather strength in the Caribbean, and move through the Dominican Republic and Haiti late Thursday or early Friday, August 24th. It will likely move to Cuba, then Florida. With impeccable timing, the storm is scheduled to blast Florida the same day that the Republican convention gathers to nominate Mitt Romney for the presidency.
It’s hard to predict the exact path of a hurricane, but convention organizers are preparing for the fact that a newly-minted hurricane could move into Tampa, Florida as the convention gets started. Bob Buckthorn, the mayor of Tampa, has stated that safety will trump politics if a hurricane threatens the city. With 75 days to the election and counting, the Republicans aren’t looking for a repeat of 2004, when Hurricane Gustav threw a wet and windy wrench into the Republican National Convention.
‘Hurricane’ Isaac’s Path Is Uncertain
What will happen next to the prospective Hurricane Isaac? Ironically, GOP politics may depend a lot on Cuba, but it will be the landform, rather than the country’s political situation that draws attention. If Isaac spends enough time on land in Cuba, it will likely delay or reduce the power of the storm, spelling bad weather for the Cubans and a smaller blow for Florida.
Tropical Depression 10 Lining Up to Take Isaac’s Place
Even if Isaac blows gently into Florida, there’s no respite in sight for those in the Atlantic hurricane zone. Tropical Depression 10 is following close behind Isaac, and it may become a tropical storm on Thursday or Friday.