TAMPA, Fla. – Elementary schoolers have Halloween. College students have theme nights and frat parties.
And Republicans have the National Convention, where every four years, they get to pull out their most sparkly, American flag printed, historically accurate garb and play dress-up.
Lest anyone forget their loyalty, Republican delegates and guest take he floor swathed in red, white, and blue — with an extra heavy dose of red — wearing outfits that boast loudly of their love for America and their conservatism.
One man wore a pale yellow suit with the pants tucked in so he could show off a pair of American flag cowboy boots. The Californian said he’d had them custom-made for him in Italy about two years ago. They are convention-wear only, he said.
Julie Smith’s sequined American flag jacket gets a bit more wear. The blue jacket, covered entirely in sequins, has a large American flag emblazoned on the back — also drawn in sequins.
“I wear it whenever anything patriotic is going on, or whenever I happen to be somewhere that’s a red, white and blue theme, even,” she told The Daily Caller.
On rare occasions, she admitted, “I’ll just wear it because everybody’s having a fun party and I just want to be flashy.”
The jacket is a hit at the convention, Smith said. Asked if she got many compliments, she told TheDC, “I must’ve gotten thirty already today.”
Oscar Poole, a restaurateur who owns a rib joint in North Georgia, is also getting lots of compliments on his bright yellow suit, with red epaulets. Wednesday, he wore it with a red, white, and blue Republican elephant tie, and a stars and stripes Uncle Sam hat.
“I have a business in North Georgia — a restaurant. And these are our business colors. And we use them on signs and cars and various things to get attention,” Poole said. “And it seems to work out pretty good at these conventions too.”
The outfit, which has gotten Poole’s photograph in various publications over the past couple of days, is not just a novelty. Poole said he wears it “fairly often, but not every day.” In particularly, he said, it’s something he brings to political events, but he also wears it for restaurant functions.