What’s happening at the Republican National Convention? Yahoo News Explains

With the 2020 Democratic National Convention over, it’s now the Republicans’ turn. Like with the DNC, this year’s RNC is going to be very different from what we’re used to. However, unlike the all-virtual DNC, the Republicans are taking a hybrid approach to social distancing, as a reduced number of delegates will convene in-person in Charlotte, N.C., and primetime speeches will be broadcast remotely. While there’s still a lot we don’t know about how the week will unfold, Yahoo News National Politics Reporter Brittany Shepherd gives our best bets on what to expect.

Video Transcript


BRITTANY SHEPHERD: As quickly as it came, the all virtual and mostly democratic 2020 Democratic National Convention is over. And now, it's the Republicans turn. Much like it did to the DNC, the coronavirus pandemic has forced the Republican National Convention to scale back from years past.

That's right, no Clint Eastwood yelling at a chair. And there's still a lot of questions of what actually is going to happen. Here's what we know now.

So the whole point of these party conventions is to both vote on a party platform and nominate a candidate. Not to mention, fundraise a little on the side. So let's start there.

Unlike the DNC, this year's RNC isn't going to be completely virtual. States are still going to be sending delegates to travel, albeit in far smaller numbers. And those delegates will cast their votes in a physical arena in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Though, that won't be open to the press. Since President Trump took office in 2017, it's pretty much been a given that he'd be the Republican nominee in 2020. But he did have some primary challengers, and he still needs to be formally nominated. This will happen sometime on Monday.

Then, President Trump will have to accept the nomination. Now, there's been a lot of back and forth about where he'll actually do that.

ELSA GILLIS: It looks like the front runner is Jacksonville, Florida, after Governor Roy Cooper said he couldn't guarantee full attendance in Charlotte.

- The Republican national committee has announced President Trump will accept the party's nomination in Jacksonville, Florida.

DONALD TRUMP: It's time to cancel the Jacksonville Florida component of the GOP convention.

- Today, President Trump tweeted "We have narrowed the Presidential Nomination Acceptance Speech, to be delivered on the final night of the convention to two locations. The great battlefield of Gettysburg, and the White House."

BRITTANY SHEPHERD: In the end, President Trump will accept the nomination from the White House lawn, and that's scheduled for Thursday. And did I mention there is a corresponding fireworks show? As for what happens between the nomination on Monday and Trump's speech on Thursday, well, we that first lady Melania Trump is set to speak Tuesday night. And Vice President Mike Pence will speak on Wednesday.

But otherwise, we're not really sure of the schedule beyond that. However, we do know who some of the other speakers are. Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the St Louis couple made infamous for waving guns at Black Lives Matter protesters, are confirmed. As is Nicholas Sandmann, the Covington Catholic High School graduate known for this picture. Trump's four eldest children-- that's Ivanka, Don Jr, Eric, and Tiffany will also speak.

Now, something to keep in mind here is that the DNC had to go first. So, for better or worse, they got to set the bar for a socially distanced convention. And the RNC doesn't have a lot of time to learn from the Democrats mistakes, or build upon the things that worked well if they hadn't already been planning to do them.

One of the DNC's more controversial decisions was to feature a large number of Republican and former Republican speakers. Could the RNC be attempting to find some Democrats for their convention? It's possible. But in all likelihood, as is many things with this administration, we won't know if it happens until we see it. Either way, it's sure to be a wild four nights. We'll keep you updated as more details are released, and we'll be live each night watching with you.