POLITICS

See Which Factions Dominated the Republican Convention

Republicans set out to run the convention messaging as if it were still January — when the economy was booming, Senator Bernie Sanders was leading the polls and there was no pandemic.

To the majority of speakers, there was largely only passing reference to the coronavirus — unless it was a revisionist history of conquering it, even as cases break records in multiple states and Americans continue to die each day. Nor was there much time spent on the current economic crises. And the political enemy remained socialism, even though the Democratic opponent — Mr. Biden — is a moderate.

While both conventions were unusual in their stripped-down, largely virtual style because of the pandemic, the Republican one was anchored in a remarkable break from the tradition of separating the levers of government from the political machinations of a presidential race. A pardon ceremony and a naturalization ceremony were featured in the program, and a sitting secretary of state delivered an address from a diplomatic outpost in Israel.

All told, a government function or property was used during about three and a half hours of the convention. About three-quarters of that time was on White House grounds, including for a speech by the first lady, Mrs. Trump, from the Rose Garden, a convention first. Mr. Trump delivered his acceptance speech from the White House lawn, followed by extensive fireworks from the National Mall.


Altogether, the Trump clan and the Trumpsphere took up nearly half of the total speaking time during the convention.

Mr. McConnell, the Senate majority leader, and Mr. McCarthy, the House minority leader, together had less speaking time than any Trump family member.


Who spoke for more than 10 minutes

But much as with the Democrats, speeches were significantly shorter than in 2016.

Aside from Mr. Trump, Mr. Pence and the first lady, no speaker went past 20 minutes. The president, as expected, trumped them all, speaking for 70 minutes, just shy of his 75-minute address in 2016.


Who spoke between 5 and 10 minutes

Some future presidential hopefuls, aside from Mr. Pence, were unable to leverage soaring speeches and reception at a convention into seeds of momentum. Both Ms. Haley and Mr. Cotton were kept to just under 10 minutes. The rising star Mr. Cameron, the first Black person to be elected Kentucky’s attorney general, was also compressed into six and a half minutes.

Perhaps no group got more direct attention than suburban voters. The convention’s speakers launched a dual message tailored to the suburbs: fomenting a fear of protest-induced violence, and humanizing the often brash and bombastic Mr. Trump as an empathetic leader.

The convention featured a direct appeal to women, with 36 percent of speaking time given to women, and a video segment featuring the women who hold high-ranking positions in the Trump administration.

In her speech, Ronna McDaniel, the chairwoman of the Republican National Committee, referred to herself as a “suburban housewife.”


Who spoke 5 minutes or fewer

The true testimonials to Mr. Trump’s record was largely left to unelected, everyday Americans who hailed from particularly important swing states. There was a farmer and two businesspeople from Wisconsin (Wisconsin got 9 minutes), a lobster fisherman from Maine (Maine got 2 minutes) and a logger from Minnesota (the usually blue state, which the Trump campaign thinks they can win, received 2 minutes).

But, for the most part, none of those speakers mentioned the coronavirus, either.


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