Viewers can watch Donald Trump’s Republican National Convention speech live online and see if the GOP candidate can steal back the show in what has otherwise been a convention filled with controversy and headaches for the Trump campaign.
Trump is set to close out the convention on Thursday night by giving his keynote address, the biggest speech ever for the real estate mogul who unexpectedly topped a field of seasoned political stalwarts to win the nomination. Known for his largely unscripted, off-the-cuff speaking style, Trump will also be turning the page and delivering a speech from a teleprompter, presenting what could be a challenging moment.
Those who want to watch Trump’s RNC speech can find the streaming video below. The speech is the final event on the schedule for the closing day of the convention, likely to start around 10 p.m. ET.
Coming into the Republican National Convention, many pundits saw the four-day event as a chance for Trump to heal some of the wounds inflicted during what was an unusually contentious primary. There remains a large faction of “Never Trump” Republicans who are opposed to Trump’s candidacy, and the convention was seen as a time for the party to come together around Trump as their nominee.
But instead, the convention has been filled with controversy as the opposing factions have still tried to knock Trump out of his candidacy. On the very first day, a group of anti-Trump delegates tried to force a floor vote that would unbind delegates, allowing them to vote against Trump. The measure failed but set a tone that this would not be a conventional convention.
The first night then ended with a speech by Donald Trump’s wife, Melania Trump, that was revealed to have large portions lifted from Michelle Obama’s 2008 speech to the Democratic National Convention. The Trump campaign spent more than a day denying that Melania had copied Obama’s speech before finally pinning it on a low-level staffer.
The controversy of the convention came to a head on Wednesday night, when Sen. Ted Cruz refused to endorse Trump in a speech that drew a loud chorus of boos.
The reaction from Trump supporters was so strong that Cruz’s wife, Heidi Cruz, had to be escorted from the floor of the convention for her safety.
While those controversies have the tone for the convention so far, viewers who watch Donald Trump’s RNC speech live online could see it all wiped away with a strong performance by Trump. Ed Rollins, a Republican strategist and adviser to a pro-Trump Super PAC, said Thursday’s speech gives Trump a chance to steal the show.
“His speech is the whole game,” Rollins told the New York Times. “Viewers have to watch it and say, ‘There is the next president of the United States.’ ”
There are others who think the RNC speech will just show Trump being Trump. He has made it this far thanks to his uncompromising style, rising in Republican polling even as he struck controversy through a proposal to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the United States and his sharp rhetoric against illegal immigration.
Keeping to that style may be the best thing Trump can do, noted Fox News columnist Zev Chafets.
“Of course a presidential nomination acceptance speech is an occasion. Trump likes occasions and he knows what to do with them. But pundits who predict a New Trump will emerge in Cleveland are mistaken. He may or may or may not use a teleprompter. He may or may not get his hair cut. He might even tone down his rhetoric for the evening. But the much discussed pivot is not going to take place.”
[Photo by J. Scott Applewhite/AP Images]