South Bay Republicans see hope as Trump accepts nomination
President Donald Trump speaks from the South Lawn of the White House on the fourth day of the Republican National Convention, Thursday, Aug. 27, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Republican National Convention concluded Thursday night with President Donald Trump vowing to defend “the American way of life” as he formally accepted the GOP nomination for president.

    “This is the most important election in the history of our country,” said Trump, who spoke from the South Lawn at the White House. “At no time before have voters faced a clearer choice between two parties, two visions, two philosophies or two agendas. This election will decide whether we save the American dream or whether we allow a socialist agenda to demolish our cherished destiny.”

    Trump slammed Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden for supporting immigration, abortion rights and gun control. He also criticized his opponent for advocating for police reform.

    “The radical left will defund police departments all across America,” he said. “…No one will be safe in Biden’s America.”

    Trump vowed to defend police officers and to promote law and order nationwide. He also pledged to reopen schools and businesses that shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic and promised a vaccine for the deadly virus by the end of this year.

    As Trump spoke, a few hundred protesters gathered near the White House, wearing masks, chanting and clutching signs that said “Trump must go!” and “Defend Democracy.” They blasted music and danced in an attempt to drown out the president’s speech.

    The convention, which kicked off Monday, was originally slated to be held in Charlotte, N.C., but was largely virtual due to the coronavirus. Some portions took place at the White House, an unprecedented move that garnered criticism.

    The conclusion of the four-day convention left Silicon Valley political observers divided on whether Trump can actually win four more years in the White House.

    Shane Patrick Connolly, the chairman of the Santa Clara County Republican Party, told San José Spotlight he believed the convention was a success. Connolly said he particularly appreciated the segments that were devoted to front-line workers, such as janitors, nurses and truck drivers.

    “The RNC has been showcasing the best of the United States, ordinary Americans, not Hollywood elitists, those who’ve overcome loss and adversity, those who are helping others,” he said. “It has demonstrated how President Trump has remained focused on serving the American people, despite the relentless attacks on him by the opposition and the national legacy media.”

    With less than three months to go before the November elections, Connolly said he’s feeling confident the president will be re-elected.

    “This convention, the president’s record of accomplishments over his first three and half years, combined with Joe Biden’s lackluster record over 47 years, and the chaos happening in cities run by Democrats for a generation or more, improves the chances for the president’s re-election,” he said. “The pundits may again be in for a surprise.”

    But South Bay Democrats have said there’s little chance Trump will win re-election after a tumultuous four years that culminated with more than 170,000 Americans killed by the novel coronavirus.

    A group of protesters gathered a few blocks from the White House as President Donald Trump accepted the GOP nomination. Photo by Katie King.

    The convention also included remarks from Vice President Mike Pence, First Lady Melania Trump, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, among others.

    Pence, who spoke Aug. 26, said Democrats fail to recognize the greatness of the United States.

    “(President Trump) sees America for what it is: A nation that has done more good in this world than any other, a nation that deserves far more gratitude than grievance,” he said. “If you want a president who falls silent when our heritage is demeaned or insulted, he’s not your man.”

    Contact Katie King at [email protected] or follow @KatieKingCST on Twitter.

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