Republican National Convention: The schedule for 2020

President Donald Trump will be renominated in a hybrid convention that melds in-person and digital speeches.

Days after Democrats nominated Joe Biden at an all-digital convention like no other in US history, Republicans will be looking to energise their own base – and bid for much-sought-after undecided voters – as they hold their own part digital, part in-person convention to officially nominate President Donald Trump as their 2020 candidate.

The Republican National Convention, like its Democratic counterpart, is held each presidential election cycle and is where the party finalises and presents its policy platforms going into the final stretch of the campaign. During the event, Republican delegates from across the country also pledge their votes for potential candidates based on the outcome of state primary elections.

This year, no more than 336 delegates – the 2016 convention had more than 2,400 – will gather in-person in Charlotte, North Carolina, to conduct the roll call vote and formally nominate Trump, who faced little opposition in the primary season. 

The unorthodox convention is expected to be a test for the Republican party.

Initially scheduled to be a traditional in-person gathering in Charlotte, in June the party moved most of the convention to Jacksonville, Florida after clashing with North Carolina’s governor over coronavirus restrictions. 

Then in late July, Trump cancelled the Jacksonville portion of the convention completely as infections in the state rose. The party then pivoted towards a more digital approach. 

Democrats, in contrast, had been repurposing their convention to be fully digital since June.

The four-day convention, running from August 24 to 27, will centre around an overarching theme of “Honoring the Great American Story” and will feature everyday Americans who will testify that the president has positively affected their lives, according to the campaign. Events will be live streamed during the day, with the main programming taking place between 8:30pm and 11pm (00:30 GMT and 03:00 GMT) each night. 

Vice President Mike Pence, who will also accept the party’s nomination, said on Friday the convention would focus on the economy and law and order, while its speakers will present the Democratic party as being taken over by “the radical left”.

Trump – known to be loath to prerecord speeches – is also expected to feature prominently during each day of the event before making his acceptance speech, likely from the South Lawn of the White House, on the final day.

Here is what we know about the developing schedule and expected speakers for the convention, as reported by US media: 

Monday, August 24

Theme

“Land of Promise”

Speakers

A maximum of 336 delegates will meet in the morning from 9am to 1pm (13:00 – 17:00 GMT) before conducting a nighttime roll call in which Trump and Pence will officially be nominated.

From California to Florida, from Arizona to Ohio, Republicans will be watching the historic re-nomination of President Trump and Vice President Pence! Don’t forget to tune in on Monday, August 24th at 9am EST. #FourMoreYears #RNC2020 #4days pic.twitter.com/p1kczuYaKO

Tuesday, August 25

Theme

“Land of Opportunity”

Speakers

First Lady Melania Trump and Trump’s adult children are expected to speak from the White House Rose Garden.

Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner may also speak. 

Wednesday, August 26

Theme

“Land of Heroes”

Speakers

Vice President Mike Pence is set to deliver a speech from Baltimore’s Fort McHenry, the site of a famous naval battle in the War of 1812 that inspired the words of the US national anthem, The Star-Spangled Banner.

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Theme

“Land of Greatness”

Speakers

Ivanka Trump is set to introduce her father.

President Donald Trump is set to accept the nomination in a speech from the White House in front of an audience. The White House has invited the majority of House and Senate Republicans to attend. 

Time and Date TBD

Expected Guest Speakers

Mark and Patricia McCloskey, St Louis couple who brandished guns at Black Lives Matter protesters

Police Sergeant Ann Dorn, widow of retired police captain David Dorn who was killed during violent protests in St Louis in June

Tanya Weinreis, Montana coffee shop owner whose business and employee’s livelihoods were saved by the federal virus relief Paycheck Protection Program

Parents of Kayla Mueller, a humanitarian worker killed by ISIL (also known as ISIS)

Andrew Pollack, whose daughter Meadow was killed in the 2018 Parkland, Florida, school shooting

Alice Johnson, a woman whose prison sentence was commuted by Trump

Nick Sandmann, Kentucky Catholic high school student who successfully sued a media organisation for not providing context to a confrontation with a Native American activist at Right to Life march that went viral

Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood employee who is now an anti-abortion activist.

Expected Elected officials

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy

Former South Carolina Governor and UN Ambassador Nikki Haley

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem

Senator from Iowa Joni Ernst

Florida Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Nunez

Pennsylvania House candidate Sean Parnell

Representative Matt Gaetz

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell

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