The Republican National Convention kicks off on Monday, following a mostly virtual format due to the coronavirus pandemic. There will still be a small meeting in Charlotte, North Carolina, the original host for the event, but President Donald Trump will speak from the South Lawn of the White House on Thursday. On Sunday, the Republican National Committee finally released the schedule of speakers, which includes several Trump family members and Republican leaders.
The convention was initially scheduled to take place in Charlotte, but Trump moved the assembly to Jacksonville, Florida, due to North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper's coronavirus restrictions. When COVID-19 cases spiked in Florida, Trump canceled all events in Jacksonville. Instead, speakers will appear from several locations across the country. The central convention location is the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium in Washington, D.C., reports NPR. Back in June, the RNC announced delegates will still meet in Charlotte to nominate Trump and Vice President Mike Pence formally. Only 336 delegates will be in attendance, in comparison to the 2,400 delegates who gathered in Cleveland in 2016.
Political conventions usually include updating party platforms, but the Republicans do not plan to do that. Instead, they are keeping the 2016 platform intact until the next convention in 2024. This was a controversial decision, with even Trump tweeting, "The Republican Party has not yet voted on a Platform. No rush. I prefer a new and updated Platform, short-form, if possible." If the platform is not updated, it will include several outdated details, including criticisms of the "current administration" and "current president," which referred to President Barack Obama. The platform also said the party did not recognize the Supreme Court's decision to uphold same-sex marriage.
Different themes each night
Each night will have different themes and will feature plenty of controversial speakers. On Monday, Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the St. Louis couple who went viral in June for pointing guns at Black Lives Matter protesters outside their home, will speak. Missouri prosecutors charged the couple with unlawful use of a weapon, a felony. On Tuesday, Nick Sandmann, the Kentucky catholic school student who went face-to-face with a Native American protester in January 2019, will speak. Scroll on for the full schedule.prevnext
Monday, Aug. 24: "Land of Promise"
Sen. Tim Scott
House Republican Whip Steve Scalise
Rep. Matt Gaetz
Rep. Jim Jordan
Former Ambassador Nikki Haley
Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel
Georgia State Rep. Vernon Jones
Amy Johnson Ford
Mark and Patricia McCloskey
Donald Trump, Jr.
Tuesday, Aug. 25: "Land of Opportunity"
First Lady Melania Trump
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
Sen. Rand Paul
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds
Florida Lt. Gov. Jeanette Nuñez
Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron
Former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi
Mary Ann Mendoza
Wednesday, Aug. 26: "Land of Heroes"
Vice President Mike Pence
Second Lady Karen Pence
Sen. Marsha Blackburn
Sen. Joni Ernst
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem
Rep. Dan Crenshaw
Rep. Elise Stefanik
Rep. Lee Zeldin
Former Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell
Sister Dede Byrne
Thursday, Aug. 24: "Land of Greatness"
President Donald J. Trump
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell
Sen. Tom Cotton
House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy
Rep. Jeff Van Drew
Carl and Marsha Mueller
Convention happens a week after the DNC
The convention is taking place a week after the Democratic National Convention, which ended with former Vice President Joe Biden accepting the party's nomination in Delaware. Trump campaign senior adviser told Fox News there will be a "big difference" between the DNC and the RNC, which will feature speakers explaining "how they've been benefiting" from Trump's time in office. "Looking at some of these speeches and hearing some of these stories, every night there will be at least one point where there won’t be a dry eye in the entire country as you hear these motivational and uplifting stories and the president’s speech next Thursday," Miller said.prev