As Republicans begin their convention Monday, they remember those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001, and the Bush administration's response to the attacks. But as NY1's Milanee Kapadia reports, some survivors are objecting to that connection.
New Yorker Bruce DeCell lost his son-in-law in the 9/11 terrorist attacks. DeCell, who represents the group 9/11 Families for a Secure America, on Monday sat alongside Republican Congressman Tom Tancredo of Colorado to protest George W. Bush's offer of amnesty to illegal aliens, claiming it may increase the risk of terrorism.
That's all DeCell and Tancredo have in common. They're far apart in their thinking about what Republicans have done for the country and the city since the attacks.
“I just think they are trying to put their spin on what they have done to benefit the country as of 9/11,” said DeCell. “I really don't think that they have done their job correctly. I disagree with what they’re saying that they’re making the country safer — I just don’t agree with that."
Tancredo is a delegate to the convention at Madison Square Garden, just a few miles from the scarred landscape of the World Trade Center. He says the sheer proximity makes it necessary to offer emotional closure to a national nightmare like the fall of the Twin Towers.
“If you are inclined to be supportive, you'd say they are coming in a way to pay respects to the people and to the city of New York," said Tancredo.
At today's opening session, Republicans did just that - they paid tribute to victims and survivors of the attacks.
Down at Ground Zero, NY1 asked one of those survivors if the president was trying to gain political mileage out of the city's loss.
“I think that basically it’s something that happened during his presidency, so anything important that happened during his presidency he certainly has a right to discuss," said 9/11 survivor Alan Weiss.
And it will be discussed, not only at this convention, but throughout the campaign. Where Americans come down on this discussion will go a long way in determining whether Bush will be in the White House for another four years.
- Milanee Kapadia