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NOW Today: About that empty chair last night...


The "special guest" at the Republican National Convention left his mark last night. But did it do more harm than good on Governor Mitt Romney's big night?

Twitter exploded during and after Clint Eastwood's 12-minute performance in the Tampa Bay convention hall.  #Eastwooding began trending and pictures of people talking to empty chairs, stools, and sofas poured in. The impromptu @invisibleobama has nearly 40,000 followers. Just past 12:30a, @BarackObama tweeted a photo of the President seated in the cabinet room, with the simple caption "This seat's taken."

It wasn't long after Eastwood's performance that the Romney campaign put out a statement, saying:

"Judging an American icon like Clint Eastwood through a typical political lens doesn't work. His ad libbing was a break from all the political speeches, and the crowd enjoyed it. He rightly pointed out that 23 million Americans out of work or underemployed is a national disgrace and it's time for a change."

Convention organizers timed Eastwood's appearance so that it would appear on network primetime specials, but it's unclear if they knew the famed performer's plan, which some have called disrespectful and vulgar. Was it appropriate or wise to allow a possibly unscripted moment on such a critical night for Governor Romney? We'll discuss that, and ask James Lipton of "Inside the Actor's Studio" to give us his take on the speakers at the RNC this week. In the meantime, you can let us know your thoughts right now on the blog, Twitter, and Facebook.

See you at noon ET on NOW.


Karen Finney, Fmr. DNC Communications Chair/msnbc Political Analyst (@finneyk)

Chris Hayes, msnbc Host (@christopherlhayes)


Mark Halperin, TIME/msnbc Sr. Political Analyst (@markhalperin)

James Lipton, Host, “Inside the Actor’s Studio”