03:00 GMT15 April 2021
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    2020 United States presidential election
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    The Republican Party has just kicked off its partly-virtual, partly-offline quadrennial event to hand another presidential nomination to Donald Trump. Here are the key names and places for the next four days.

    A week after the Democrats, the Republicans are making the case for their own standard-bearer for the next four years.

    While the Democrats held an entirely online convention, which avoided any major technical mishaps, the GOP has decided to retain some in-person business in the schedule.

    Where is it happening?

    Initially planned for Charlottesville, Virginia, the convention was moved to Jacksonville, Florida in June.

    However, a spike in coronavirus cases there led Republicans to cancel the Florida location and run a pared-down gathering across two cities – Charlotte, North Carolina and Washington, DC.

    Republicans have sought to preserve, to an extent, the glitzy style of previous gatherings. A group of Republican leaders, including RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, will be physically present in Charlotte, with social distancing restrictions and mandatory self-swab coronavirus tests before travelling and entering their hotels.

    Most, however, will be speaking live or feature in pre-taped addresses, like their counterparts at the Democratic convention.

    When is it happening?

    The full event schedule begins at 9 a.m. ET (13 p.m. GMT) each day from 24 to 27 August. The primetime coverage will air each night from 21 p.m. ET to 23 p.m. ET (1 a.m. GMT to 3 a.m. GMT).

    What to watch for?

    A pared-down group of just 336 delegates will gather in person to conduct a nighttime roll call vote to renominate Donald Trump and Mike Pence on Monday.

    The US president clearly exerts a massive gravitational pull on Republican politics, and much of the attention these days will be on him and the other Trumps, who make up half of the keynote speakers.

    Donald Trump is expected to appear, in one capacity or another, on each day of the convention and will deliver a formal nomination acceptance speech on Thursday night from the White House – something his critics said was a mixture of official and campaign duty.

    U.S. President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump and Barron Trump disembark from Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland, U.S., August 16, 2020
    © REUTERS / SARAH SILBIGER
    U.S. President Donald Trump, First Lady Melania Trump and Barron Trump disembark from Air Force One at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland, U.S., August 16, 2020

    Another highly-anticipated headliner is Melania Trump. The first lady rarely speaks in public, and she was ripped online after it emerged that parts of her 2016 speech were plagiarised from Michelle Obama’s address to the 2008 Democratic convention. She is scheduled to speak on Tuesday.

    Vice President Pence will deliver his speech from Fort McHenry, a historic place in Baltimore where US soldiers withstood a British bombardment in 1814. The sight of the American flag still flying over the fort after the attack inspired Francis Scott Key to write the US national anthem “The Star-Spangled Banner”.

    U.S. Vice President Mike Pence arrives on the South Lawn of the White House prior to U.S. President Donald Trump holding an event to tout administration efforts to curb federal regulations in Washington, U.S., July 16, 2020
    © REUTERS / JONATHAN ERNST
    U.S. Vice President Mike Pence arrives on the South Lawn of the White House prior to U.S. President Donald Trump holding an event to tout administration efforts to curb federal regulations in Washington, U.S., July 16, 2020

    Nikki Haley, one of the few officials to have left the Trump administration on good terms, is among the star speakers this year. The former UN ambassador, who has become a rumoured fit as a post-Trump Republican presidential candidate, will give an address on Monday.

    Here’s the line-up of key speakers for the next four days.

     

    Monday:

    • former UN ambassador Nikki Haley
    • Donald Trump Jr
    • Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina
    • Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida
    • Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio
    • Mark and Patricia McCloskey, a St Louis couple who aimed guns at Black Lives Matter protesters
    • Andrew Pollack, a school safety activist whose daughter was killed in the 2019 Parkland school shooting

     

    Tuesday

    • First Lady Melania Trump
    • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
    • Eric Trump
    • Tiffany Trump
    • Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky
    • Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds
    • Nicholas Sandmann, a student who successfully sued CNN over a viral video of his confrontation with a Native American elder at the Lincoln Memorial
    • Abby Johnson, a pro-life activist who previously worked at Planned Parenthood

     

    Wednesday

    • Vice-President Mike Pence
    • Second Lady Karen Pence
    • Senator Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee
    • Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa
    • Lara Trump
    • South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem
    • White House adviser Kellyanne Conway

     

    Thursday

    • Donald Trump
    • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell
    • House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy
    • Ivanka Trump
    • Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas
    • Ann Dorn, the widow of retired St Louis police captain David Dorn who was killed during violent protests in June
    • Alice Johnson, a criminal justice reform advocate and former federal prisoner whose life sentence was commuted by Donald Trump
    • Parents of Kayla Mueller, an American humanitarian aid worker who was taken captive and killed in Syria in 2015
    Tags:
    election, US, Republican Party, Mike Pence, Donald Trump, Republican National Convention
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