CLEVELAND – From a floor fight over rules to accusations of plagiarism, there was no shortage of drama on the first day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.
After Donald Trump made a dramatic entrance to introduce his wife, Melania, the 46-year-old former model gave a speech in which parts were taken word-for-word from Michelle Obama’s speech at the 2008 Democratic National Convention.
There were several passages that aped Obama’s speech. Here’s one from Trump's speech on Monday: "Because we want our children in this nation to know that the only limit to your achievements is the strength of your dreams and your willingness to work for them."
Here’s the text from Obama’s 2008 speech in Denver: "Because we want our children -- and all children in this nation -- to know that the only limit to the height of your achievements is the reach of your dreams and your willingness to work for them."
Trump campaign stops rules rebellion
Earlier in the day, open discord and revolt broke out on the floor as GOP officials crushed an attempt to change party rules, a maneuver that could have embarrassed Trump.
In a show of disunity and anger, delegates from several states tried to force a state-by-state roll call vote on the rules of the convention. Trump's campaign team frantically whipped votes on the floor to squelch the effort.
The effort was effectively the last stand of party forces to oppose the billionaire. Their protest may have been one of the opening salvos of the Ted Cruz 2020 campaign, as it was driven by several of the Texas senator's most prominent supporters who were keen to make the battlefield more favorable for conservatives in future Republican primaries.
Benghazi victim's mother: 'Hillary for prison'
The mother of a victim of the Benghazi attack told Republicans that former secretary of state and presumptive Democratic Party nominee Hillary Clinton "should be in stripes."
"This entire campaign comes down to a single question: If Hillary Clinton can't give us the truth, why should we give her the presidency?" Patricia Smith, the mother of Sean Smith, said to cheers on the opening night of the Republican National Convention.
"I blame Hillary Clinton," she said. "I blame Hillary Clinton personally for the death of my son -- personally."
Giuliani takes aim at his former foe
Rudy Giuliani never got the head-to-head match-up he'd wanted with Clinton in the 2000 New York Senate race or the 2008 presidential race, but on Monday night he unleashed a barrage against her character.
"Who would trust Hillary Clinton to protect them? I wouldn't. Would you?" he said.
"Hillary Clinton's experience is the basis for her campaign," Giuliani said. "Hillary Clinton's experience is exactly the reason she should not be president of the United States.”
Giuliani also offered a testimonial for Trump's personal qualities, telling the crowd he'd known Trump for 30 years and had watched him anonymously contribute to help police and firefighters in need.
Coming up Tuesday
On Tuesday, Republicans will officially nominate Trump for president and Indiana Gov. Mike Pence for vice president.
Among those scheduled to take the podium are House Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. Two of Trump's children -- Tiffany and Donald Jr. -- are also among the headliners, as is Kerry Woolard, the general manager of Trump Winery, UFC president Dana White, golfer Natalie Gulbis and actress Kimberlin Brown.