As the Republican National Convention got underway on Tuesday, Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn was among the first to speak, welcoming the delegates to the Tampa Bay area.

Throughout his address, Buckhorn focused on the history of our area and the progress being made today.

“Today, we are a city that represents all that is good about America,” he said.

Among the qualities mentioned by Buckhorn is one of the fastest declines in unemployment combined with the fastest population growth in the country.

During the speech, Buckhorn spoke of the founding of Tampa and Hillsborough county, speaking of the immigrants who built up the area and going on to say that that they set the stage for Hillsborough as an economic power.

In addition to the delegates, Buckhorn thanked law enforcement, fire rescue and volunteer services for their part in making the RNC successful.

“Each of them, proud Americans, are excited to be part of the democratic process and eager to tell Tampa’s story to the world,” he said.

The RNC officially began Monday afternoon but, because of the threat from Tropical Storm Isaac, the main event was postponed until Tuesday. Despite the delay, events ran smoothly, with committee members altering their schedule to accommodate the shortened convention time.

For his part, Buckhorn reassured all in attendance that Tampa was not only prepared, but happy to be hosting this national event.

“I can tell you with certainty that we are open for business,” he said “and we are ready to embrace all that the future holds. I trust that you will fall in love with our city just as I do every day.”

Buckhorn was among the first speakers in a politically charged Tuesday that followed the RNC theme “We Built It,” a reference to an earlier speech by President Obama. While later speakers attacked Obama’s policy, Buckhorn kept his comments carefully neutral and unerringly positive, focusing on his city and its accomplishments.

For more information on the RNC, or to follow the convention as it proceeds, visit

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