UPDATE: Deb Fischer is expected to speak at 2:55 p.m. today at the Republican National Convention. Click here to watch live on C-SPAN.
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TAMPA, Fla. — Nebraska State Sen. Deb Fischer will have her introduction to the national political stage — literally — today when she addresses the Republican National Convention.
But don't blink or you might miss it. Her moment in the spotlight most likely won't last more than a couple of minutes, particularly with the compressed schedule that has resulted from the weather-related cancellation of Monday's program.
Still, Fischer's appearance on the podium — some time between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. CDT — will be a brief opportunity to make an impression on party faithful from across the country. (The speech will be broadcast live on C-SPAN, Channel 7 on Cox Cable, as well as at www.C-SPAN.org/RNC.)
If they're familiar with her at all, most delegates probably just know her as that woman who got endorsed by Sarah Palin at the last minute and surged to a surprise victory in the Nebraska GOP Senate primary.
Expect to hear elements of her stump speech during the address, which she described as an honor.
She said she would talk about “the success we've had in Nebraska with our unemployment and economy, and that it can also happen for the country as a whole.
“That's my basic message: Taking the Nebraska way to Washington.”
Fischer is coming off an intense Saturday night debate with her opponent, Democrat Bob Kerrey. He has been pushing for more debates, including one on Fox News.
Fischer said it's still unclear whether she would agree to do a Fox debate.
“My campaign is looking over a number of proposals, so we'll see,” she said.
Fischer's speech holds potential benefits for both the candidate and the Republican Party, according to Jennifer Duffy of the Cook Political Report.
It's a chance for Fischer to meet political movers and shakers, people with influence and money. Fischer is working to raise some campaign cash while she's in Tampa, with a fundraising event scheduled Monday night on a yacht.
Promoting one of their female Senate candidates helps Republicans with their gender gap problem.
Having Fischer on the podium also allows the Republicans to highlight a Senate race they expect to win.
“There's a bit of cheerleading there, too,” Duffy said.
University of Nebraska-Lincoln political scientist John Hibbing downplayed the stakes for Fischer, however.
Barack Obama may have ridden a convention speech to the White House, but he had a lot more than a couple of minutes to speak.
“It's not going to impact the race in Nebraska unless she does something really stupid,” Hibbing said. “Which she won't.”
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Kerrey-Fischer State Fair debate
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