Hurricane Gustav has given the Republicans the excuse they needed to keep the unpopular president out of his party’s big party. John McCain will be spared another awkward embrace while George W. Bush is off in Texas pestering survivors.

Houston Chronicle:

President Bush said on Sunday he is skipping his party’s national convention and will instead fly to Texas, where evacuees from coastal areas in Hurricane Gustav’s path are heading to dry ground.

“I will not be traveling to Louisiana tomorrow because I do not want my visit to impede in any way the response of our emergency personnel,” Bush said.

Instead, he will head to Austin’s Emergency Operations Center, a command facility where local, state and federal disaster officials are coordinating storm response.

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