The President Makes His Pitch

The Republican National Convention kicked off this morning with the formal renomination of President Trump and Vice President Pence.

Over the next four days, Republicans will aim to contrast with Democrats’ virtual convention last week. Here are the differences to watch for:

  • The in-person events. More than 300 delegates from across the country have gathered in Charlotte, where mask-wearing and social distancing have so far been mixed. Hundreds more are likely to attend Trump’s acceptance speech on the White House South Lawn on Thursday, giving the president a live audience to feed off of. Like with the Democratic nominee’s speech, fireworks will follow.
  • The candidate. President Trump is expected to appear each day of the convention. He made his first in-person appearance this afternoon, in an almost hour-long speech to delegates in Charlotte following his renomination.
  • The show. Nightly programming will begin at 8:30 p.m. Eastern and run for two and a half hours – 30 minutes more than Democrats’. Watch for more live programming than pre-recorded segments, driven by the TV-focused president and his former producer from The Apprentice who is helping to plan the event.
  • The tone. The party has promised an “upbeat convention,” with the theme of “Honoring the Great American Story.” Trump and his surrogates will have an opportunity to lay out their agenda for a second term – while the current crises of the coronavirus pandemic, racial injustice and a struggling economy rage on.