Speaker lineup and themes for Repub­li­can con­ven­tion.

Chicago Sun-Times - - TOP NEWS - BY ZEKE MILLER

WASHINGTON — Repub­li­cans will aim to re­cast the story of Don­ald Trump’s pres­i­dency when they hold their na­tional con­ven­tion this week, fea­tur­ing speak­ers drawn from ev­ery­day life as well as ca­ble news and the White House while draw­ing a stark con­trast with Demo­cratic nom­i­nee Joe Bi­den.

The four-day event is themed “Honor­ing the Great Amer­i­can Story,” ac­cord­ing to four Trump cam­paign of­fi­cials in­volved with the plan­ning process but not au­tho­rized to dis­cuss it by name. The con­ven­tion will fea­ture promi­nently a num­ber of well-known Trump sup­port­ers but also those whom the GOP says are mem­bers of the “si­lent ma­jor­ity” of Amer­i­cans who have been aided by Trump’s poli­cies. Some have been “si­lenced” by a “can­cel cul­ture” pushed by Democrats, the cam­paign of­fi­cials said.

Trump him­self was ex­pected to ap­pear each night in the key 10 p.m. East­ern hour, plan­ners said.

Plan­ners in­sist they will put for­ward a more “pos­i­tive” con­ven­tion than Democrats’ roast­ing of Trump. Yet the pres­i­dent also ap­pears in­tent on try­ing to seize on the na­tion’s cul­tural di­vides.

The of­fi­cials out­lined the cam­paign plans to The As­so­ciates Press on the con­di­tion of anonymity to dis­cuss the emerg­ing sched­ule.

The open­ing night Mon­day will high­light the “Land of Prom­ise,” aim­ing to show how Trump helped re­new the Amer­i­can dream. Fea­tured speak­ers in­clude South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, who will de­liver the cov­eted clos­ing speech of the tele­vised prime-time block; for­mer Am­bas­sador to the U.N. Nikki Haley; pres­i­den­tial son Don­ald Trump, Jr.; and staunch con­gres­sional de­fend­ers Reps. Matt Gaetz of Florida and Jim Jor­dan of Ohio.

Tues­day’s theme is “Land of Op­por­tu­nity,” which is ex­pected to cast Bi­den’s plans as “so­cial­ist” and “rad­i­cal left.” Speak­ers will high­light Trump’s ac­tions on trade, abor­tion and the na­tion’s opi­oid cri­sis. Sec­re­tary of State Mike Pom­peo will ad­dress Trump’s for­eign pol­icy record, an un­usual foray into do­mes­tic pol­i­tics by the na­tion’s top diplo­mat, and Trump chil­dren Eric and Tif­fany Trump will also speak.

Another speaker will be Ni­cholas Sand­mann, who as a stu­dent at a Catholic high school in Ken­tucky gained at­ten­tion last year for his in­ter­ac­tion with a Na­tive Amer­i­can man dur­ing demon­stra­tions in Washington.

First lady Me­la­nia Trump will de­liver the mar­quee ad­dress of the night from a newly ren­o­vated White House Rose Gar­den.

Wed­nes­day, themed “Land of Heroes,”

will fea­ture con­ser­va­tive per­son­al­i­ties in­clud­ing South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem and White House coun­selor Kellyanne Con­way. Clarence Hen­der­son, a civil rights fig­ure from the 1960s, is also on deck to ad­dress the “true mean­ing of peace­ful protest,” plan­ners said.

Vice Pres­i­dent Mike Pence will de­liver the key­note Wed­nes­day from Bal­ti­more’s Fort McHenry, which in­spired “The Star-Span­gled Ban­ner” in 1814, to high­light Trump’s op­po­si­tion to pro­fes­sional ath­letes who kneel dur­ing the na­tional an­them.

Speak­ers on the fi­nal night, themed “Land of Great­ness, will in­clude Alice John­son, the jus­tice ad­vo­cate whose sen­tence on drug crimes was com­muted by Trump at the urg­ing of celebrity Kim Kar­dashian, and evan­ge­list Rev. Franklin Gra­ham.

For­mer New York Mayor Rudy Gi­u­liani and Sen. Mitch McCon­nell of Ken­tucky are to de­liver re­marks, as will Ul­ti­mate Fight­ing Cham­pi­onship Pres­i­dent Dana White.

Trump will close out the con­ven­tion dur­ing an un­prece­dented ad­dress from the White House South Lawn. He and Ivanka Trump, his daugh­ter and se­nior ad­viser who is set to in­tro­duce him, will speak from an elab­o­rate stage in front of the Ex­ec­u­tive Man­sion. The move has drawn crit­i­cism from Democrats and ethics groups, who ar­gue that Trump is vi­o­lat­ing the spirit, if not the let­ter, of fed­eral law by us­ing the White House grounds to stage his con­ven­tion.

PA­TRICK SE­MAN­SKY/AP

Don­ald Trump ad­dresses del­e­gates at the 2016 Repub­li­can Na­tional Con­ven­tion in Cleve­land.

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