Cleveland, July 19: Open discord and revolt broke out on the floor during the opening session of the Republican National Convention here as delegates opposed to presumptive presidential candidate Donald Trump failed in their attempt to change party rules to block his nomination. [Melania Trump addresses Day 1 of Cleveland Convention]
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Several hundred anti-Trump delegates seeking to change the Convention rules so that they could opt out of voting for the real estate mogul roared their disapproval after being denied the chance to debate the changes or have a full vote on them. [Republican Convention begins amid security concerns]
"Shame! Shame!" some shouted, as pro-Trump delegates yelled back. Some of those opposed to 70-year-old Trump even walked out. Members of the 'Never Trump' group alleged that they were bullied by the party leadership. The party leadership denied the allegations and alleged that there was a purposeful move to create disturbance during the Convention.
Divisions in Republican Party exposed again
The interruption highlighted the divisions within the Republican Party as it struggles to unify behind Trump in the run-up to the November election against Democrat Hillary Clinton. Trump, who made a brief appearance was cheered by thousands of Republican members at the Quicken Loan Arena. He said he and the party would win "big" in the November general elections. He introduced his wife Meliana Trump, who delivered an address to the convention.
A women in the audience raised banner and shouted anti-Trump slogan less than an hour before Meliana was to address the delegates. Meliana presented Trump as softer nd gentler than the man known by he public. "I can tell you with certainty that my husband has been concerned about our country for as long as I have known him. With all of my heart, I know that he will make a great and lasting difference," Meliana told thousands of cheering Republican members and party leaders.
"Donald has a great and deep and unbounding determination and a never-give-up attitude. I have seen him fight for years to get a project done or even started, and he does not give up. If you want someone to fight for you and your country, I can assure you he's the guy," she said amidst applause on the first day of the four-day Convention. In an unconventional move, Trump himself appeared on the first day of the convention and made a very brief introductory remarks for his spouse.
The Trump couple later returned to New York. John Green Director, Ray C Bliss Institute of Applied Politics, The University of Akron said it is "unusual" for the nominee to appear on the first day of the Convention.