During this week’s Republican National Convention, President Donald Trump and a lineup comprised mostly of his family will be making the argument for while he should stay in office.
By Denise Clay
The late political columnist Molly Ivins said that in politics, you’ve got to dance with the one that brung you.
So it really comes as no surprise that President Donald Trump has brought in two of the producers from the NBC reality show that brought him to prominence — “The Apprentice” — to help with the production of this week’s Republican National Convention.
Sadoux Kim, a longtime deputy to “Apprentice” creator Mark Bennett and Chuck LaBella, a former NBC executive, have been brought in to oversee the production of the RNC, according to Variety.
Their mission? Recreating the reality television star businessman who many Americans thought competent enough to elect president of the United States.
Unlike last week’s Democratic National Convention, the Republican National Convention has moved from Charlotte, North Carolina to Jacksonville, Florida, and back to Charlotte, where the bulk of the convention’s business will be conducted, including the nominating roll call, scheduled for this morning.
But most of the speeches will take place at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium in Washington, DC, which is considered the convention’s “hub.” Most of the speakers on the roster are members of Trump’s family — including sons Donald Jr. and Eric, and daughters Ivanka and Tiffany — and Republican legislators including Reps. Matt Gaetz of Florida and Jim Jordan of Ohio, and Sens. Rand Paul and Tim Scott, the lone African American Republican in that chamber.
Also on the RNC rundown are former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the couple made famous for pointing guns at Black Lives Matter protestors walking by their St. Louis home and Nicholas Sandmann, the student from Covington, Kentucky made famous for suing the Washington Post and other news organizations for defamation.
But not all of the speeches will be held at the Mellon Auditorium. Vice President Mike Pence will accept his VP nomination at Ft. McHenry in Baltimore before a live audience and both First Lady Melania Trump and President Trump are rumored to be giving their speeches on the White House lawn.
More of these activities will be live, Trump said. And he expects his convention will be better than the DNC because of it.
We’re going to have more of it live than what they did,” Trump said to Fox News. “I think it’s pretty boring when you do tapes.”
While the RNC itself has bounced from city to city, one thing that Trump and company have been aware of for a while now is whom the president will be disparaging this week.
Last Thursday, Julia Louis-Dreyfuss, who eventually became president on the HBO show “Veep”, emceed the last night of the DNC where former Vice President Joe Biden officially became the Democratic party’s nominee for president.
In a speech that began with the words of civil rights activist Ella Baker, Biden outlined his vision for America and, like much of the Democratic convention, it focused on inclusivity.
America needs to come together, and it starts at the top, he said.
“While I will be a Democratic candidate, I will be an American president,” Biden said. “I will work as hard for those who didn’t support me as I will for those who did. That’s the job of a president. To represent all of us, not just our base or our party.”
“This is not a partisan moment,” Biden continued. “This must be an American moment. America isn’t just a collection of clashing interests of Red States or Blue States. We’re so much bigger than that. We’re so much better than that.”
While he mentioned things like having a policy to reduce the impact of the coronavirus, passing the Green New Deal, restoring the Affordable Care Act, and repealing the tax cut for the 1% that Trump and the Republicans passed about two years ago, Biden mostly focused on the soul of the country and how this election is necessary to restore it.
“All elections are important. But we know in our bones this one is more consequential,” Biden said. “America is at an inflection point. A time of real peril, but of extraordinary possibilities. We can choose the path of becoming angrier, less hopeful, and more divided. A path of shadow and suspicion. Or we can choose a different path, and together, take this chance to heal, to be reborn, to unite. A path of hope and light.”
“This is a life-changing election that will determine America’s future for a very long time,” Biden continued. Character is on the ballot. Compassion is on the ballot. Decency, science, democracy. They are all on the ballot. Who we are as a nation. What we stand for. And, most importantly, who we want to be. That’s all on the ballot. And the choice could not be clearer.
After finishing his speech, which was held at the Chase Center on the Waterfront in Wilmington, Delaware, Biden, his wife Jill, running mate Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff greeted supporters at a post-convention tailgate party in the center’s parking lot. In lieu of the usual balloon drop, fireworks shot up into the night sky instead.
The Republican National Convention began Monday morning at 9am with the Trump and Pence nomination roll call vote.
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