The third day of the Republican National Convention kicks off Wednesday, July 20, at 7:20 pm.
The third night's theme is "Make America First Again," a much vaguer unifying principle than Monday's "Make American Safe Again" (which presaged a night full of attacks on Hillary Clinton's national security record and stern warnings about the threat of "radical Islamist terrorism," which was always referred to by that name) and Tuesday's "Make America Work Again" (which had a business/economy theme, albeit a looser one than the national security theme of night one).
But Wednesday features some of the biggest speakers of the whole convention, from failed presidential candidates (Scott Walker, Ted Cruz, a video from Marco Rubio), elder statesmen (Newt Gingrich), family members (Eric Trump), and, most importantly of all, vice presidential nominee Mike Pence, who'll get his first big chance to introduce himself as a national political figure.
How to watch:
C-SPAN is airing the convention, gavel to gavel. It also provides a live stream for web viewers.
CNN is doing 24-hour coverage of the convention, with its normal programs such as Wolf, The Lead, and The Situation Room airing from Cleveland.
CBS News and Twitter are teaming up to stream the convention live.
Finally, the RNC is streaming the proceedings live on YouTube, which you can see above.
Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus is scheduled to call the convention to order at 7:20 pm; you can read the full list of speakers, who are not given set times, here.
The major speakers are, in order:
- Laura Ingraham, talk radio host and Fox News regular
- Phil Ruffin, billionaire casino owner and Trump friend
- Pam Bondi, Florida attorney general who solicited a Trump donation before deciding not to join New York state's investigation of Trump University.
- Eileen Collins, retired astronaut and first female space shuttle commander.
- Michelle Van Etten, a multilevel marketer behind the Alex Jones–backed nutritional supplement company Youngevity
- Ralph Alvarado, Kentucky state senator
- Darrell Scott, pastor from Cleveland Heights and notable African-American Trump supporter
- Harold Hamm, billionaire best known for pioneering fracking in Montana and North Dakota who famously argued he made his billions due to dumb luck rather than skill to limit the amount he had to pay his ex-wife in their divorce
- Scott Walker, governor of Wisconsin and former presidential candidate
- Lynne Patton, vice president of the Eric Trump Foundation and assistant to Eric, Ivanka, and Donald Trump Jr.
- Marco Rubio, US senator from Florida and former presidential candidate (appearing in video)
- Ted Cruz, US senator from Texas and former presidential candidate
- Eric Trump
- Newt Gingrich and Callista Gingrich, former US House speaker and 2012 presidential candidate and president of Gingrich Productions, respectively
- Mike Pence, Indiana governor and vice presidential nominee
What to expect
The first set of speakers on Wednesday are allies of Trump's from the world of business, and while odds are they won't ruffle any feathers, there's potential for some wackadoo hijinks too.
Michelle Van Etten, in particular, runs a highly dubious-seeming enterprise that sells supplements designed by a naturopath (not a real doctor) through a multi-level marketing system that looks rather a lot like a Ponzi scheme. She probably won't dive too deep into your business model but if she does, the whole event could take a turn toward the Dr. Oz.
Then there are the runners-up. Scott Walker wasn't in the race long enough to really get bitter, but Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz got down in the mud with Trump and haven't exactly been enthusiastic backers since he defeated them. Rubio's prerecorded video should be courteous and will probably follow the "praise generic Republicanism, not Trump" approach of Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell.
Ted Cruz will probably have more nice things to say about Trump personally, but don't expect too many fireworks there either. He knows he needs to play reasonably nice to shore up his status as frontrunner for 2020 after Trump (presumably) loses.
But the real star is Mike Pence, who was denied a real chance to introduce himself at his formal unveiling this past Saturday and will now get his big national debut. Pence isn't the most compelling speaker, but he's good at talking the talk to conservative audiences. Expect him to try to vouch for the ticket's conservative bona fides, and to tie Trumpism to more traditional strands of Republicanism.