Tarkanian: Trump Speech And The Republican Platform


AP Photo/Matt Rourke

Oklahoma alternate delegate Debbie House, left, and delegate Allie Burgin dance before the start of the third day session of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Wednesday, July 20, 2016.

Donald Trump gave his acceptance speech last night and one of the trending words immediately after was “dystopian.”

The New York times this morning said:

"Mr. Trump gave a grim, angry acceptance speech to close a grim, angry convention, casting America as a dystopian hellscape and himself as the only leader capable of saving it from murder, terrorism, financial ruin and an uncontrolled wave of immigrants."

Yet the Twitter hashtag Trump Speech in Four Words reveals as many people saying “Out of the Park” as “Out of His Mind.”

So, what did the Nevada delegation think of the speech and the convention?

Amy Tarkanian takes exception to that "grim" characterization. She said that the hall was overwhelmingly positive, and that people were excited and energized not just by Trump's speech, but by the speeches during the rest of the convention.

She agrees the country is divided, she said she just doesn't think it's Donald Trump's fault.

Support comes from

"I think this is something, actually, that Obama has focused on, and this is where they have been so divisive with the whole Black Lives Matter Movement. And I get that, Black lives DO matter, white lives matter, blue lives matter. But he's been very divisive."

Trump also said in his speech that crime was up, quoting various statistics. But the New York Daily News, as well as a myriad of other outlets, fact checked that assertion. In fact, the Daily News quoted FBI statistics that show violent crime is actually down since 1970. And in Las Vegas, the crime rate over the last decade has similarly dropped.

Tarkanian doesn't dispute the statistics, but points to social media as making the discussion more urgent. People know now what they didn't know before.

"And, it's OK on social media to talk about that, and in fact I find it healthy to talk about it."

Toward the end of his speech, Trump rattled off a list of things he was going to fix in this country, they included infrastructure, the TSA, providing more money for law enforcement. And he’s going to cut taxes. Tarkanian says that it's possible to do all these things at once and still balance the budget.

"You have to be able to look at the budget overall and see where your needs are and go from there." She added, though, that she was not in the state legislature or Congress, so she has not looked specifically at what could be cut.

One thing she does know: teachers are underpaid in Nevada. But she is against raising taxes to pay for higher salaries.

Tarkanian is also clear on her disappointment with Ted Cruz, who told the RNC crowd on Wednesday to "vote your conscience" and explicitly did not endorse Donald Trump for president.

"I think he really would have done a tremendous job for himself, if he had just said 'Vote for Donald Trump' instead of 'don't stay home in November.'"

Tarkanian is looking forward to the Democratic convention next week. She said she attended a Bernie Sanders rally earlier in the campaign with her friend, Erin Bilbray, who was Sanders' only superdelegate in Nevada, and she doesn't necessarily disagree with everything she hears.

"I'm not somebody who's close minded. I do like to listen and learn from the other side."



Amy Tarkanian, former state GOP chair, Nevada delegate

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