RNC: Trump eyes conservative hold on high court

Associated Press

Cleveland — Donald Trump reminded voters that the balance of power on the Supreme Court will be decided by the November election.

The Republican presidential nominee says in his convention speech that he wants judge who would uphold the Constitution.

Many Republicans who are reluctant Trump supporters have pointed to his ability to ensure that the high court has a conservative majority.

There’s a current 4-4 ideological split, with one vacancy.

Balloon drop offers colorful closing

The Republican convention’s closing balloon drop didn’t disappoint.

Soon after Trump made one last promise to “make America great again,” a slow-moving, confetti-and-balloon blizzard floated down on the convention hall in Cleveland.

More than 125,000 balloons — some as big as beach balls — floated down on the dancing delegates.

Outside, fireworks illuminated the sky over Lake Erie.

Clinton camp fires back

Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman said Trump used “more fear, more division, more anger, more hate” in his speech to the Republican National Convention.

John Podesta says in a statement that next week’s Democratic National Convention will offer a more positive vision.

Podesta says Trump is “temperamentally unfit and totally unqualified to be president,” and isn’t offering any “real solutions” but rather “more prejudice and paranoia.”

Podesta says “America is better than Donald Trump.”

Reaching out to evangelicals

Trump’s attempt to reach out to evangelicals hasn’t always been smooth, but on Thursday night it was loud and clear during his convention speech.

Trump took a moment to thank evangelicals for their support, even though, as he out it, “I’m not sure I totally deserve it.”

Trump touched on an issue that’s become a priority for religious conservatives. He’s pledging to repeal a law that some believe prevents religious groups from engaging in politics.

Rejects multinational trade deals

Donald Trump says he’ll turn what he believes are bad trade deals into great ones for the United States. And he says he’ll never sign a trade agreement that hurts workers or diminishes freedom.

The Republican presidential nominee also says he won’t let U.S. companies relocate to other countries — laying off workers in the process - “without consequences.”

Trump says he’ll negotiate deals with individual countries, rather than complex agreements involving many nations.

He’s taking aim at President Barack Obama for basing his trade policy on negotiating multinational agreements in Asia and Europe.

Trump is breaking sharply with his party on trade. The GOP in the past has supported free trade agreements.

Vows to protect gays from violence

Trump says that if he’s in the White House, he’ll protect gays and lesbians from violence.

It’s an overture to a group that doesn’t often get mentioned during a speech at the Republican National Convention.

Trump is bemoaning the attack in a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, that killed 49 people. He says the shooter was an “Islamic terrorist” who was driven by a “hateful foreign ideology.”

Trump says he’s going to prevent such attacks against the LGBTQ community. Trump’s use of the phrase is notable for including the ‘Q,’ which stands for queer or questioning and is less common.

Compassion in immigration plan

Trump says his immigration plan is based on compassion.

Trump says his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexican border is a way of taking a hard line on immigration laws — and he says that approach is “considerate and compassionate to everyone.”

Trump’s immigration proposal is a driving force in his presidential campaign. But it’s alienated many Hispanic voters and has been called unworkable even some in the GOP.

Trump says his tough approach will stop the cycle of human smuggling and “peace will be restored by enforcing the rules.”

Kinder words for NATO

Trump backtracked from his criticism of NATO.

He says the alliance has taken a step in the “right direction” in deciding to focus more on terrorism.

A day earlier, he said in a New York Times interview that he might not come to the defense of NATO nations that failed to meet their financial obligations.

Obama dividing nation along racial lines

Trump accused America’s first black president of dividing the nation along racial lines.

The Republican presidential nominee called President Barack Obama’s rhetoric on race “irresponsible.”

Trump is blaming Obama for making the country more dangerous.

Trump says Obama “has used the pulpit of the presidency to divide us by race and color.”

Outlines strategy on fighting terrorism

Trump outlined his approach to fighting terrorism.

He says he’ll create the “best intelligence gathering operation in the world.”

The GOP presidential nominee says he’ll also abandon what he calls the “nation building” and “regime change” policies pushed by his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, when she was secretary of state.

Trump didn’t mention former President George W. Bush, who led a war to oust Iraq’s Saddam Hussein in 2003.

Trump’s third focus is working with allies such as Israel — and he’s promising to block Syrian refugees from entering the country.

Will crack down on attacks on police

Trump says he’ll work with and appoint the “best and brightest prosecutors and law enforcement officials” to crack down on violence against police.

He told delegates at the Republican National Convention that “an attack on law enforcement is an attack on all Americans.”

A protester interrupted Donald Trump’s speech.

A woman waving a banner started yelling more than 20 minutes into Trump’s remarks.

The GOP presidential nominee paused for nearly a minute while waiting for police to remove her.

The convention crowd chanted, “USA!” for much of the time as Trump stood silently at the podium.

When Trump began speaking again, he said: “How great are out police?” as authorities took the protester out of the arena.

Trump puts lid on delegates’ ‘Lock her up’ chant

Trump put a lid on the calls by delegates to put Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in jail.

Trump was giving his acceptance speech Thursday night when the crowd began chanting “Lock her up!” — a chant heard during previous nights at the convention.

Trump waved his hands in a motion to discourage the refrain. Then he said: “Let’s defeat her in November.”

Trump warns of threat from those in U.S. illegally

Trump says nearly 180,000 people who are in the United States illegally are a threat to the nation’s safety.

He tells delegates at the Republican National Convention that, if he’s elected president, he’ll lead a country of “law and order.”

The promise is the first point the Republican presidential nominee made in his convention address.

Trump says “attacks on our police, and the terrorism in our cities, threaten our very way of life.” He says “crime and violence” will end if he’s elected president.

Ivanka vouches for father with women, minorities

Ivanka Trump vouches for dad with women and minorities — two groups he has struggled to win over.

Trump’s oldest daughter says her dad is “color blind and gender neutral.” She says “he hires the best person for the job, period.”

The younger Trump noted she’s worked with her father for more than a decade and seen him hire people from “all walks of life.”

Donald Trump has faced criticism for his hiring practices and treatment of women in his businesses. But his daughter says his construction sites are “true meritocracies.”

Trump accepts GOP nomination for president

Trump has accepted the Republican nomination for president.

The New York billionaire formally became the GOP standard bearer Thursday night on the convention stage in Cleveland.

He will represent the Republican Party on the ballot in November.

Ivanka Trump calls dad ‘the people’s nominee’

Ivanka Trump calls her father “the people’s nominee.”

Trump’s oldest daughter told the convention that her father is a fighter.

She says she doesn’t consider herself a Republican or a Democrat. Sometimes, she says, she has a tough choice picking a presidential candidate.

But not this time.

Here’s how she puts it: “For more than a year, Donald Trump has been the people’s champion. And tonight, he is the people’s nominee.”

Melania Trump sat in VIP box with son

Melania Trump made her first appearance in the arena since her prime-time speech Monday night that went viral with charges of plagiarism.

She sat in the VIP box reserved for Trump’s family with her son, Barron, the youngest of Donald Trump’s children.

Thiel proud to be gay, Republican

High-tech entrepreneur Peter Thiel says he’s proud to be gay and proud to be a Republican — but most of all, proud to be an American.

And that declaration is won Thiel loud cheers at the Republican convention.

The PayPal co-founder is the first person to give a GOP convention speech and acknowledge being gay.

Thiel says the culture wars are distracting Americans from important economic issues. He says debates over transgender people and bathrooms are “a distraction from our real problems.”

Democratic Party called ‘same old thing’

The GOP chairman, Reince Priebus, has a new description for the Democratic Party.

Priebus calls it the “party of the same old thing.”

That was Priebus’ message Thursday night at the Republican National Convention.

Preibus says in prepared remarks that Democrats will “trot out the same old Democrats with the same old message running the same old candidate” at next week’s Democratic convention in Philadelphia.

He calls the Republican Party “the party of new ideas.”

Convention draws to a close

The four-day Republican convention has drawn to a close with a total of only two dozen protest-related arrests.

That comes as a relief to city officials and police who had braced for mass disruptions and violence during this summer of bloodshed.

In the run-up to the convention in Cleveland, some law enforcement officials had feared hundreds of arrests every day.

The demonstrations that many thought would end in pitched battles between police and protesters turned at times into carnival-like scenes, with bongo players and with protesters dressed as nuns on stilts.

Late Thursday night, police put the number of arrests since Monday at 24, with 17 of those from a melee that erupted during a flag-burning by avowed revolutionaries.