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September 10th, 2012
12:03 PM ET

Actor Clint Eastwood breaks silence on his speech at the Republican National Convention

In the wake of both the Republican National Convention and the Democratic National Convention are memories of great political fervor, plenty of one-liners and of course, empty chair references. Clint Eastwood’s unscripted speech addressed to an empty chair was one of the biggest headlines from the conventions and one of them finally includes the Hollywood star’s own comments. The actor and director spoke about the controversy to Paul Miller, the publisher of Eastwood’s hometown paper, The Carmel Pine Cone. Miller joins John Berman on “Early Start” this morning regarding his exclusive interview.

 Clint Eastwood told Miller that his speech was “mission accomplished”. That meant, “He irritated the people, I believe, he intended to irritate, and pleased the people he intended to please,” Miller says.

Miller says the speech was largely spur-of-the-moment. “The fact that he would participate wasn’t finalized until just a week before he showed up,” at the convention, Miller says. “The idea of using the empty chair as a stand-in for the president didn’t strike him until he was backstage and about to walk out to the lectern.”

One of the major points Miller says Eastwood told him he wanted to make in his speech and accomplished is getting across that, “politicians aren’t royalty or something. When they’re not doing the job, you gotta let em go.”

Considering the media firestorm that followed his RNC appearance, Miller describes Eastwood as a person who takes things as they come. Miller says, “I hope that we’ll be that way when we’re 82 and have his level of accomplishments."

August 27th, 2012
07:51 AM ET

CNN contributor Ana Navarro says Mitt Romney 'needs to sell himself as the comeback artist' at Republican National Convention

Despite some nasty weather here this morning from tropical storm Isaac, the Republican National Convention is set to kick off its first full day on Tuesday.

Mitt Romney will be making his official debut this week as the party's presidential nominee. The candidate was at church in New Hampshire yesterday with his wife, Ann, who will join a long list of Republican leaders taking the stage this week.

This morning on "Early Start," Republican strategist and CNN contributor Ana Navarro says that though polls are more in Romney's favor, it's still a 'neck-and-neck race' with President Obama.

"This is an important week for Mitt Romney," Navarro says. "It is really his party here, his coming out party. He needs to show himself. He needs to open himself up. He needs to make the sale with the American people and see if he can bump up those numbers."

Navarro adds, "The economy was going to be the issue, but it's turned out to not be the only issue, but it's very important that Romney has got that lead that he has currently and he needs to grow that. He needs to sell himself as what he's been calling himself, the comeback artist."

Filed under: 2012 election • Mitt Romney • RNC
August 23rd, 2012
06:00 AM ET

All eyes on Tropical Storm Isaac as storm gains strength, could hit Florida as hurricane by Monday

(CNN) - Not yet a hurricane, Tropical Storm Isaac has already delivered shock waves from the Caribbean to Florida, postponing terror trial hearings in Cuba and posing a potential threat to next week's GOP convention in Tampa.

Isaac's path remains uncertain, but some computer models show the storm slicing its way up Florida's peninsula. Others send it farther west, into the Gulf of Mexico.

Officials are taking the threat seriously.

This morning on "Early Start," meteorologist Rob Marciano details the latest track for the storm.

Filed under: Republican National Convention • RNC