By LAUREN SHANTHA
TAMPA, Fla. — Los Angeles and U.S. Correspondent for 20 Minutes Philippe Berry thought is was very important to be at the 2012 Republican National Convention reporting.
Berry has been living in Los Angeles as a correspondent for 20 Minutes for the past four years. Twenty Minutes is daily paper in France that has the format and stories set up so a reader can read the whole paper from start to finish in 20 minutes.
“It has become very mainstream and popular,” said Berry of the paper 20 Minutes.
Berry’s degree in France was for computer science but he wound up realizing he would rather write about computers and technology than work on them. Berry studied aboard in San Diego for one year all the while free lancing for 20 Minutes and reporting about Sen. John McCain and President Barack Obama. He loved the job so much he pitched the idea of reporting on technology and breaking news stories from the United States on permanent basis. It worked.
Berry came on red-eye flight to the Republican National Convention on Sunday. Berry was able to come to the convention because he pitched the idea to his editor because he thought it was important to be here for several different reasons.
“For the U.S. this is a major news event, and I want to show what everything is about. First people in France do not really know who Mitt Romney is. We are here almost as a teacher for France,” said Berry.
This is not about rating for Berry.
“For the ratings it might not be the best, we probably have about 20 percent of readers who are really interested in international politics, but for the 20 percent who are interested it is important to be here, and to be taken seriously you can’t just write about movies and tech stuff,” said Berry.
When asked who he is most looking forward to hearing and writing about he said Paul Ryan.
“We are what America would describe as European Socialism and he is very far is very hardcore conservative to the right … It will be interesting to see if they go hardcore red meat or if they are going to try and focus on the economy cause that is what we are here for,” said Berry.
Peggy Henderson, an at-large delegate for Georgia, believes that it is very important to have international media at the convention but feels there is not enough when asked about Berry and international media coverage.
“We have gone through really hard times but we are a still a country that people look to and it excites me to let people around the world know that we are here and are coming back,” said Henderson.
Henderson believes there is not enough international press.
“I will tell you this is the third convention I have been too, I was a guest at the first and a alternate at the second and there in the beginning there were a lot more foreign correspondents than there are now. I mean you could not swing a bat with out hitting one, “ said Henderson.
Berry will be updating stories round the clock as they come in during the convention and will be heading back to Los Angeles on Friday.