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Hillary Clinton selects Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine as running mate

Hillary Clinton picks Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine as her No. 2

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Biden: Kaine ‘will be a strong partner’ for Clinton

Vice President Joe Biden cheered Hillary Clinton’s selection of Sen. Tim Kaine as her running mate, a choice that could replace the nation’s first Roman Catholic veep with its second.

“Tim has proven time and again that he has the skills to lead and to make tough, principled decisions,” Biden said in a statement to The Times. “He shares my belief that when the middle class does well, our country does well.”

“He will be a strong partner for Secretary Clinton at home and abroad and his steady hand will continue the trajectory of our economy toward full resurgence,” he added.

Biden proved to be Barack Obama’s first choice in 2008 after a selection process in which Kaine was a close runner-up. In 2012, as Biden and the president ran for reelection and Kaine for his current seat, Biden and Kaine campaigned together on the final day before the election.

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Watch Hillary Clinton’s new running mate, Tim Kaine, question her over Benghazi

Despite their major roles in the Democratic Party over the last decade, Hillary Clinton and her new running mate, Tim Kaine, have run on largely separate tracks. Kaine endorsed then-Sen. Barack Obama instead of Clinton in the 2008 election and played an active role in his campaign.

Obama sought roles for both of them after he was elected: Clinton, of course, as secretary of State, and Kaine as the chairman of the Democratic National Committee. By the nature of those roles, their public interactions were almost nonexistent.

They did have one brief overlap in public service in January of 2013, as Clinton was preparing to step down from the Cabinet and Kaine had been newly sworn in as a senator from Virginia.

At a Foreign Relations Committee hearing to discuss the 2012 attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, Kaine made note of it.

“I also regret that our overlap will be so brief,” Kaine said as he prepared to question Clinton. “I think the country is at its strongest when we balance military strength with diplomatic strength, economic strength, and strength of our moral example. And I can’t think of a person that exemplifies that balance in a public service career as much as you do.”

Clinton congratulated him on his new post, before answering his questions about findings of a review board she had assembled to review the attacks and the department’s response.

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Watch Tim Kaine deliver the first speech given in Spanish on the Senate floor

Typically, new senators wait months to deliver their first extended speech from the floor of the chamber. In 2013, Tim Kaine was only five months into his tenure representing Virginia when he stood from his desk and delivered a 14-minute speech. In Spanish.

It was the first time anyone had done so. And it was subject-appropriate: It came during debate over the comprehensive immigration reform legislation that would soon pass the Senate, but stall in the House.

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Progressive groups have already warned they aren’t ready for Tim Kaine

(Manuel Balce Ceneta / Associated Press)

Some progressives and former backers of Bernie Sanders’ presidential candidacy signaled their dissatisfaction with the choice of Sen. Tim Kaine as Hillary Clinton’s running mate before it was even announced.

Kaine supported legislation in the Senate that was key to advancing a 12-nation trade agreement that has been a priority of the Obama administration, but which both Sanders and Clinton have said they opposed.

This week, liberal groups targeted Kaine for signing on to two letters to the Obama administration seeking modifications to banking regulations that would benefit smaller and community banks. Democracy for America, a group that endorsed Sanders, cast the changes sought by Kaine and other senators as a “lobbyist-driven effort to help banks dodge consumer protection standards and regulations designed to prevent banks from destroying our economy.”

“With his vote for fast track authority for the job-killing Trans Pacific Partnership and this newly uncovered push for bank deregulation, making Sen. Tim Kaine our vice presidential candidate could be potentially disastrous for our efforts to defeat Donald Trump,” the group said.

A person within Democracy for America said that the vice presidential selection alone would not threaten party unity heading into the convention and the fall, a concern for Democrats as they work to bring Sanders’ backers into the fold after a long primary. They are anxious to avoid depressing enthusiasm among key activists, which could hurt fundraising and voter turnout efforts.

“It’s coming from a place of deep concern,” the group official said. “We ... desperately need to defeat Donald Trump and we want to make sure the base of the party is as fired up about doing so as they possibly can be.”

Adam Green, founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, which was neutral in the primary but has ties to Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, questioned the choice of a running mate who supports the Trans Pacific Partnership.

“It will be very ironic if voters go into election day thinking Donald Trump is better on the TPP issues than the Democratic Party,” he said.

Green had championed Warren as a possible running mate for Clinton.

“There is a difference between a checklist liberal and a bold progressive. Elizabeth Warren has been at the high-water mark of what changing the entire national conversation looks like,” he said.

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Tim Kaine’s first reaction: ‘I’m honored’ to be chosen as Clinton’s running mate

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It’s Clinton and Kaine

Hillary Clinton used social media -- Twitter, Instagram, Facebook -- and a text message on Friday evening to announce Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine as her running mate.

The duo are set to campaign together in Miami on Saturday.

The hype had been that it would come first in a text message.

The Instagram post actually broke the news and the text message came 12 minutes later.

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Hillary Clinton picks Tim Kaine, Virginia senator and former governor, as her running mate

Hillary Clinton has tapped Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine as her running mate, adding a well-liked swing-state moderate with broad governing experience to the Democratic ticket.

Clinton’s choice of Kaine, 58, reflects her calculation that voters with doubts about both her and Republican nominee Donald Trump will respond to a doubling-down of her pitch for sober pragmatism, instead of a political wild card.

Clinton tweeted late Friday that she was “thrilled” to announce Kaine as her running mate, calling him “a man who’s devoted his life to fighting for others.”

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Trump, Clinton respond to attack in Munich

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In the Trump family tradition, Ivanka uses her moment in the spotlight to hawk her wares

Those Trumps never miss the chance to sell their merchandise.

Friday morning, on the heels of her well-received speech at the Republican National Convention, prospective first daughter Ivanka Trump showed just how much she takes after her father: Her official Twitter account tweeted, “Shop Ivanka’s look from her #RNC speech” to her 1.97 million followers, and a link to a Macy’s page that featured the polyester-and-spandex “sleeveless studded sheath dress” from her eponymous fashion line.

The tweet must have worked; the $158 dress, which was made abroad, sold out.

First lady Michelle Obama, another fashion plate, also has the power to move merchandise. Known for her eclectic tastes — from unsung American designers to J. Crew — she does not personally profit from the trends she sparks.

It’s different with the Trumps.

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Hillary Clinton watch as VP selection expected

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The best lines from Donald Trump’s speech, according to California Republicans

The California delegation to the Republican National Convention had some of the best seats in the house for Donald Trump’s acceptance speech Thursday night. Here’s what resonated most with the largest delegation in the country.

“I humbly and gratefully accept your nomination for presidency of the United States.”

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Like Chicken Little, Donald Trump and his followers think the sky is falling

Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention.
Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention.
(Jessica Griffin/Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS)

I was wrong. In an earlier observation about what was happening at the Republican National Convention I compared Donald Trump to Thomas Hobbes, the English philosopher who was the original Gloomy Gus, describing a world in chaos, a world of all against all, a world in which life itself was often nasty, brutish and short. There has certainly been much of that in Cleveland this week: Like Chicken Little, Trump and his followers see the sky as falling (although in their version of the fable, Trump the Magnificent simply prevents the imagined disaster by force of his own superior Is-ness). The story itself is told with various endings, each intended to convey a moral teaching, one of the most popular being that one should not always believe what one has been told; that version, however, would have found no footing at all at this worshipful convention of the Ubermensch and his adorers.

There’s another story, though, that also captures what transpired in Cleveland. It’s Plato’s allegory of the cave. In that story, a group of people have spent their entire lives chained to the wall of a cave, facing a blank wall. There is a fire behind them and from time to time, people and objects pass in front of the fire, casting shadows on the wall. The prisoners believe they are seeing reality but they are in fact seeing only distortions. Plato could have been writing about the prisoners in Donald Trump’s convention, seeing only the unreal distortions of reality cast by the blazing fire of Trump’s persona.

The rage unleashed by Trump’s own rage was a rational response to the apocalyptic horrors Trump described. Rape and pillage; economic disaster; enemies everywhere; existence itself in mortal danger. “Oh God, who can save us” is not a wildly inappropriate response. But the world that prompts the response is a world that does not exist; it’s a shadow. There are crimes and dangers, of course. There are threats. But the incalculable calamity portrayed by Trump and others like Newt Gingrich is a figment of their strangely malfunctioning minds.

Mickey Edwards is a former congressman and member of the House Republican leadership.

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President Obama challenges GOP ‘vision of violence and chaos’

President Obama took issue Friday with the “vision of violence and chaos” that he said was painted by speakers at the Republican National Convention, arguing that America is safer and more peaceful now than when President Reagan was in the White House.

The murder rate is lower than during the Reagan years, Obama said, and the rate of intentional killings of police officers is down.

“This idea that America is somehow on the verge of collapse, this vision of violence and chaos everywhere, doesn’t really jibe with the experience of most people,” Obama said a day after Donald Trump accepted the GOP presidential nomination in Cleveland with a speech that argued America was in sharp decline. .

Americans woke up Friday to find “birds were chirping and the sun was out,” Obama said, because “some of the fears that were expressed [at the Republican convention] just don’t jibe with the facts.”

Obama spoke at a joint news conference with visiting Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto after the two leaders met in the Oval Office.

For his part, the Mexican president avoided the controversial remarks he has made in past appearances with Obama. In one, he compared Trump with Adolph Hitler and Benito Mussolini.

Pena Nieto said Friday that his past remarks were “taken out of context” and he promised to work “in a very constructive manner” with Obama’s successor.

Obama had avoided public comment during the GOP convention. On Friday, he used the press conference to present a counter-argument to claims by Trump and other speakers. .

The rate of illegal migration into the U.S. is lower by two-thirds than it was when Reagan was president in the 1980s, Obama said. There are “far fewer” undocumented workers crossing the border today than in the 1980s, the 1990s or when George W. Bush was president from 2000 to 2008, he went on.

“Obviously, there are going to be different visions about where we should go as a country,” he said. “But we’re not going to make good decisions based on fears that don’t have a basis in fact.”

Obama will have a chance to elaborate Wednesday when he speaks to the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, the night before Hillary Clinton is scheduled to accept the nomination.

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Trump says he doesn’t want and wouldn’t accept Ted Cruz’s endorsement

Fresh off his marathon Republican convention acceptance speech, Donald Trump looked backward Friday, rekindling his feud with onetime chief rival Ted Cruz.

Trump, in classic style, essentially said he couldn’t care less that Cruz declined to endorse him in a dramatic snub at the convention.

“I don’t want his endorsement,” Trump said at a hastily arranged speech to volunteers in Cleveland. “If he gives it, I will not accept it.”

The moment resembled so many that have punctuated Trump’s unlikely candidacy for president: relitigating past skirmishes at a time when his campaign could be taking a victory lap, this time over a fairly well-received nomination acceptance speech that helped salvage a rocky convention.

Trump held forth in the freewheeling morning event, dredging up past arguments with the Cruz team, including attacks on Cruz’s wife and father, at a time when attention was shifting Friday to the general election and Democrat Hillary Clinton’s anticipated announcement of her vice-presidential pick.

“I didn’t start anything with the wife,” Trump said of the attack ads during the primary, which he retweeted, that featured an unflattering photo of Heidi Cruz. He blamed it on the PAC that ran the ad.

Heidi Cruz, he said, is the “best thing” Cruz has going for him, and, “by the way, is a very nice woman and a very beautiful woman.”

But the lack of an endorsement from Ted Cruz was his main point of contention.

“He should have done it,” Trump said, suggesting that doing so would have set up the Texan better for a potential presidential run later.

Then again, Trump said he doubted Cruz could win the White House.

“Maybe I’ll set up a super PAC if he decides to run,” Trump said, then turned to his own lawyer in the audience. “Are you allowed to set up a super PAC, if you are the president, to fight somebody?”

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California’s youngest Republican delegate is a pro-choice, pro-gay marriage UC Berkeley student

(Annie Z. Yu / Los Angeles Times)

Claire Chiara isn’t your typical California college student.

The 22-year-old UC Berkeley senior was at the Republican National Convention just feet away from Donald Trump when he accepted the GOP nomination for president Thursday night.

“Being on the floor as a delegate was one of the most amazing experiences of my life,” she said.

Unlike the GOP platform, she’s pro-choice and pro same-sex marriage – stances that she says many young Republicans support. That’s part of why she backs Trump, she said.

“He has a 20-year track record of being staunchly supportive of [the LGBT] community,” she said.

Chiara grew up in Redondo Beach and started her high school’s first Republican group before she headed to Berkeley.

Her college experience, surrounded by liberal peers and professors, has been “challenging,” she said.

“I’ve been in many classes where professors will be very quick to dismiss the entire Republican Party and say … ‘All Republicans think X.’”

Since then, she’s become involved with several Republican groups, including one for young Republicans; one for female Republicans and one that champions LGBT rights.

“I’m extremely proud of her,” said her father, Paul Chiara, who accompanied her to Cleveland. “Exceedingly proud.”

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A jovial Trump celebrates the Republican convention

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Hillary Clinton looks to seize back the spotlight with running mate pick

(Michael Reynolds / EPA)

How does Hillary Clinton trump a show-stopping convention speech by the GOP nominee?

By playing her biggest political card to date: announcing her selection of a vice presidential running mate.

The former secretary of State will appear with that person in the next 24 hours in the key battleground state of Florida, either at a rally here Friday afternoon or at a morning event in Miami on Saturday.

Her pick will probably be revealed beforehand, either via a text message and email to supporters, as promised by her campaign, or more likely through a media report.

The heavy favorite, as he has long been, is Tim Kaine, a first-term senator and former governor from the swing state of Virginia. Other reported finalists include Labor Secretary Thomas E. Perez and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

The selection of a running mate is one of the most critical governing decisions a candidate makes, and also a key organizing moment for the campaign as the general election ramps up. Clinton needs to wrest back political momentum after a chaotic Republican National Convention that dominated the news over the past week.

Clinton’s decision-making has been decidedly more private than Trump’s ahead of his selection of Indiana Gov. Mike Pence as a running mate. The process has been within a tight circle of close advisors as well as her husband and daughter. The White House said this week it was “natural” that Clinton might have also consulted with President Obama as well.

“I don’t know if the president has a specific favorite,” Press Secretary Josh Earnest said this week. “But, ultimately, he is going to defer to Secretary Clinton to make the decision that she believes is best.”

Clinton will begin her day Friday on a somber note, however. She is scheduled to host a roundtable discussion with community leaders in Orlando, her first visit to the city after the Pulse nightclub massacre last month.

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2,800 law enforcement officers from around the country were in Cleveland this week

(Mary Altaffer / Associated Press)

After four days of hosting the Republican convention, Cleveland officials are calling this week a success.

About 2,800 law enforcement officers from outside of Cleveland swarmed the city to provide intense security during the Republican National Convention this week, Police Chief Calvin Williams said Friday morning.

Earlier in the week, he would only say -- citing security reasons -- there were “thousands” of officers from “hundreds” of agencies around the country.

“Couldn’t have asked for a better crew,” he said.

Mayor Frank Jackson also thanked protesters for a relatively calm week, despite several arrests and a flag-burning demonstration outside the convention site.

“Many protesters just came to express a point of view, and they did in a professional and peaceful way,” he said.

Cleveland officers are still on 12-hour shifts until Saturday, the chief said.

“People doubted that we could successfully handle 1.3 million people downtown celebrating the Cavs victory,” he said of the Cavaliers’ win in the NBA Finals earlier this year. “Don’t doubt Cleveland.”

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Analysis: Trump aims at voters he already has, betting they will give him a November win

(Associated Press)

Donald Trump’s Thursday night address, indeed his entire Republican convention, represented a high-risk bet: that a strong desire for change in November will defy the demographic and political tides that have defeated the last two Republican presidential nominees.

Trump only glancingly reached out to voters other than the ones who led him to victory in the Republican primaries, who make up a much smaller proportion of the November electorate.

He repeatedly spoke of the perils of illegal immigration and trade deals, positions that invigorate the white, blue-collar voters with whom he is most popular.

But, apart from a mention of college tuition ills, he said nothing about fresh issues that might be helpful in attracting women, minority voters or young Americans, the three groups whose increasingly Democratic alliances represent the greatest threat to his candidacy. Those voters were key to successive Republican defeats in 2008 and 2012 — and their numbers have grown since.

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Liberals rip into Sen. Tim Kaine over letter that they see as pro-banking

(Drew Angerer / Getty Images)

Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine found himself under fire from liberal groups after he signed two letters that question heavy regulations on regional banks.

A spokesman for Democracy for America, a progressive group, called the bipartisan letters a pro-banking lobbyist effort and said Kaine’s support should keep him from being considered as Hillary Clinton’s running mate.

“It should be disqualifying for any potential Democratic vice presidential candidate to be part of a lobbyist-driven effort to help banks dodge consumer protection standards and regulations designed to prevent banks from destroying our economy,” said the group’s executive director, Charles Chamberlain, in a statement Thursday.

Kaine signed the letters this week that ask the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to “carefully tailor” any rules that could “unduly burden” regional banks and credit unions. Liberal groups opposing this move argue that he is in direct contrast to the Democratic Party’s position on banks and the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act aimed at increasing consumer financial protections.

A spokeswoman for Kaine rebutted the allegation that the senator supports bank deregulation.

“Sen. Kaine is a strong supporter of Dodd Frank’s financial protections because certain financial institutions wreaked havoc on the American economy, hurting millions of Americans in the process,” said spokeswoman Amy Dudley.

Bernie Delegates Network, a group backing Sen. Bernie Sanders group, suggested delegates may protest Kaine at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia next week if he is chosen as Clinton’s running mate.

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Elizabeth Warren counts herself out as Clinton’s running mate choice

Strike Elizabeth Warren off of Hillary Clinton’s shortlist. Warren told late-night host Stephen Colbert she’s unlikely to be selected as Clinton’s running mate.

“I think if it were me I would know it by now, so probably not,” Warren said on CBS’ “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.”

Clinton may announce her running mate Friday. Her top picks are said to be Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, though others, including Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, also have been in consideration.

Of Donald Trump’s GOP nomination acceptance speech, Warren had a biting assessment.

“He sounded like some two-bit dictator of some country that you couldn’t find on a map,” she said.

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Republican convention notes from The Times’ TV critic

(Timothy A. Clary / AFP / Getty Images)

As in the Republican race, nothing at the convention went as planned. All the talk of blocking Donald Trump’s nomination came to naught, as, mercifully, did fears of violent protest.

Melania Trump’s much-anticipated speech went from triumph to plagiarism controversy in a matter of minutes. Anti-Trump House leader Paul Ryan caved but Ted Cruz didn’t. And though no one talked to an empty chair, the string of reality stars, minor-league celebrities and little-known motivational speakers brought its own sense of the bizarre.

Even before a self-described billionaire called himself the voice of the forgotten man, the fourth and final night doubled down on the convention’s commitment to expectation defiance.

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How different was Trump’s speech from the leaked version?

(Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times)

Hours before Donald Trump took the stage at the Republican National Convention, a draft of his full speech was leaked to multiple media outlets, including the Washington Post and Politico. It was unclear if the document was legit, or if it was an early version.

When it came time for Trump to talk, he stuck mostly to what was in the prepared remarks, with a few “believe me’s” and “absolutelys” thrown in for emphasis.

These are the substantive changes from the leaked version, also obtained by The Times:

  • At the beginning of his speech, Trump referenced how many votes Republicans had received in the primaries.
  • The draft said that prior to Hillary Clinton taking over as secretary of State, “Syria was under control.” When he spoke, he amended that to “Syria was somewhat under control.”
  • Trump said Clinton’s legacy was “death, destruction, terrorism and weakness.” In the earlier version, the sentence omitted the word “terrorism.”
  • “How great are our police, and how great is Cleveland?” was ad-libbed when security escorted a Code Pink protester out of the room.
  • After emphasizing that his administration would protect LGBTQ citizens from hateful foreign ideologies, the crowd roared, prompting Trump to add, “And I have to say, as a Republican, it is so nice to hear you cheering for what I just said. Thank you.”
  • Also, in the earlier version of the speech, it was just “LGBT” -- no Q.
  • A reference to his earlier comments about NATO was an addition to the leaked document: “Recently, I have said that NATO was obsolete. Because it did not properly cover terrorism. And also, that many of the member countries were not paying their fair share. As usual, the United States has been picking up the cost. Shortly thereafter, it was announced that NATO will be setting up a new program in order to combat terrorism. A true step in the right direction.”
  • The entire section about giving relief to graduates with student loan debt seems to have been added after the draft we obtained.
  • Initially, it looks like he intended to end his speech with “Thank you.” Instead, he appeared to speak from the heart, signing off with, “God bless you, and goodnight. I love you.”

Our reporters and editors are annotating and fact-checking Trump’s entire RNC speech. See what they have to say here and watch the full address below.

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Donald Trump, Republican nominee for president, accepts the nomination for president at the Republican National Convention. America is in crisis, Trump said, with attacks on police and domestic terrorists threatening “our very way of life. Any polit

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Watch: The final day of the convention in less than four minutes

The final night of the Republican National Convention was so yuge, we needed more than three minutes to sum it up.

Ray Whitehouse and Cleon Arrey present the evening in less than four minutes:

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Watch: Day Four of the Republican National Convention in less than four minutes. For more political coverage visit: http://www.latimes.com/trailguide

Watch Day 1

Watch Day 2

Watch Day 3

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Editorial: Trump plays fear card at the Republican convention

(J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press)

Donald J. Trump accepted the Republican presidential nomination Thursday evening with a speech that was frightening in more ways than one.

Trump’s overarching intention was to sow fear in America’s voters: Fear of uncontrolled crime and terrorism that “threaten our very way of life.” Fear of immigrants, including refugees from the civil war in Syria. Fear of Muslims, although instead of the “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States” he proposed last year, Trump said he would suspend immigration from countries that have been “compromised by terrorism.” Fear of foreign trading partners that, thanks to “disastrous trade deals supported by Bill and Hillary Clinton,” have destroyed American manufacturing.

Finally, Trump warned that Americans should fear Hillary Clinton, whom he described as a corrupt politician whose legacy as secretary of State amounted to “death, destruction and weakness.”

But Trump’s speech was frightening in a second sense: By softening his strident rhetoric, by (selectively) citing statistics, by couching cruel policies in the language of compassion, Trump managed to make an extreme agenda sound not only plausible but necessary.

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The Toastmasters review of Donald Trump’s speech

(Courtesy of Toastmasters)

We asked World Champion of Public Speaking Mohammed Qahtani, right, and Toastmasters International President Jim Kokocki to weigh in on Donald Trump’s convention speech.

How did he do?

Too much clapping and too many numbers, but good eye contact, for starters.

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