CLEARWATER BEACH, Fla. -- It was a late night for New York delegates and others around the country as the shuttle bus system that aimed to bring them back to the hotel suddenly paralyzed, turning what should have been an hour ride into a three and a half hour nightmare.
The shuttle buses took the delegates from the Tampa Bay Times Forum to Raymond James Stadium, where they were to board other buses for their hotels. But the huge number of shuttle buses created a huge traffic jam at the stadium, leaving the delegates stranded and fuming.
"We had too much faith in the system," said Brad Marble, a Republican activist from Lockport who arrived back at the Hilton in Clearwater Beach at 2:30 a.m. Wednesday.
"Some people were a little aggravated," said Niagara County GOP Chairman Michael J. Norris.
The late arrivers did find one blessing when they arrived, noted former Gov. George E. Pataki, thanking a party functionary named Rob Cole.
"He made the demand that the bar stay open till 3 a.m.," Pataki said. "He deserves a round of applause."
— Jerry Zremski