Donald J. Trump on Thursday (July 21) formally accepted the Republican candidacy for president of the United States. After a long slog, where the New York real estate magnate battled 16 other hopefuls to emerge as the de facto head of the GOP, Trump took to the stage at the Quicken Loans Arena and replaced Mitt Romney, John McCain and Ted Cruz as the face of the right. It was a wild week at the 2016 convention — from Melania's plagiarism flap to the white elevators controversy, the Grand Old Party was anything but a bash. Yet, here, The Donald emerged unscathed to speak his particular truth to power in front of a packed house of delegates, surrogates and party elite. So what did we see on the floor that you didn't see on TV? Read below for the scoop.
The Donald Is Not the Reader
Trump is missing/slipping some minor parts of his speech via TelePrompTer and injecting ad-libs. I'm sure folks can tell. #RNCinCLE— Jayson (@jaysonrodriguez) July 22, 2016
Trump has amassed a utility belt full of catchphrases, from his beloved "you're fired" to newly instituted refrains such as "believe me," "yuuuuge" and "crooked Hillary." However, this polished version of a presidential hopeful carried less sting on his buzzer as he read from a teleprompter. The problem was that Trump didn't appear to be a strong reader. He stumbled over words early and often, which led him to either double up on words to amplify his points or just ad lib altogether, such as when he spoke about the girl with a 4.0 GPA who he later said finished first in her class, which wasn't exactly what the script called for.
You Go, Donald!
Stage right, in the 100 section, featured a fortysomething black woman screaming during the pauses Trump birthed between points in his speech. She was loud but not quite unruly; "You go, Donald!" she said, letting out a guttural scream. Her seat location was too far for her to be embraced and have an impact on the primary race, but she could end up becoming a new surrogate, either as a story planted by the mainstream media or, even worse, by an empty senate seat up for grabs." Who said this stuff was boring?
Bun B was on the scene for Vice, where the Port Arthur native spoke to REVOLT from the floor of the GOP. He may be a correspondent for another outlet, but that didn't stop the rapper from kicking some knowledge to some less hydrated folks. Way too real.
What's the Q?
Perhaps it's his Manhattan accent and having lived in the Big Apple for so long. But when Trump delivered one of his top lines of the night, where he expressed solidarity with LGBTQ representatives by going off script to note that as a Republican he was enthusiastic about the reception to his comments...it was all from the hip. It may have been his third most popular line of the night and the only one of the Top 3 to be completely unplanned. Still, there were those who were taken aback by The Donald's pronunciation, which left many feeling like he was describing a new Times Square restaurant rather than a worldwide movement of equality.
The Insane Amount of Cowboy Hats
It wasn't just the Texas delegation. The floor of the convention felt like an Oklahoma University homecoming party that was in its 25th year in overtime. The anachronistic vibe was punctuated by the sheer number of 10-gallon hats (and Make America Great again baseball caps.) We don't know for sure if someone with a hat was among those who disrupted Trump and escorted away by security. We will say this, though: It was really hard to see very far in front of you on the convention floor.