Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, a rising national figure in the party, gave up his Tuesday night speaking slot for Mrs. Romney, who was scheduled to speak on Monday, the convention's opening night. Broadcast television networks were not planning to cover Monday's proceedings in Tampa, Fla.
Mrs. Romney is a key surrogate in a race where women voters are fiercely sought-after by Romney and Democratic President Barack Obama.
Rubio, however, will still have a prime time slot. The freshman senator and tea party favorite will address the convention in his home state on Thursday, just before Romney closes the convention with his acceptance speech.