As the Republican National Convention kicks off in Cleveland today, George Stephanopoulos tackled the three key questions on everyone’s mind.
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Will Donald Trump Speak Tonight?
Donald Trump said he will be at the RNC tonight to watch his wife Melania Trump speak. The presumptive GOP presidential nominee isn’t scheduled to deliver remarks of his own until Thursday night. But during a call-in interview this morning on Fox News’ “Fox and Friends," he didn’t rule out speaking tonight as well.
“Well, I may speak up. To be honest, I want to see this,” he said when asked if he would be addressing the convention with his wife. “I'd love to be there when my wife speaks. So the answer is, yes, I will be there.”
The rumor in Cleveland is that he will introduce her.
“This is Donald Trump’s convention, and he’s going to do it his way,” ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos said today from Quicken Loans Arena in downtown Cleveland, the site of the convention.
Trump’s campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, confirmed that Melania Trump will address the convention on its first night.
Sources tell ABC that the former model and Trump’s third wife spent the weekend preparing for the address in New Jersey. The campaign has released no information about the focus of her speech or its length but did not rule out the chance that the presumptive nominee would make an earlier-than-normal appearance at the convention in order to introduce her.
Will Cleveland See Convention Unrest?
So far, there have been largely peaceful demonstrations in Cleveland. But the Ohio city is bracing for the worst, as recent domestic and international events have heightened security concerns.
“This city is prepared for that, but it’s also a city on edge,” Stephanopoulos said.
Thousands of law enforcement officers were ordered to Ohio even before the fatal shootings of police officers in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. More than 3.5 miles of security fences line downtown Cleveland, and a 5,500 officers, many from out of state, have been assigned to convention security.
After yet another tragedy, the head of Cleveland's largest police union called for an emergency action to suspend the state’s open carry laws during the convention. Ohio Gov. John Kasich said he does “not have the power to arbitrarily suspend federal and state constitutional rights or state laws as suggested.”
Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams said officers are “prepared for anything and everything” that could happen.
What About Unrest Inside the Convention?
There’s concern that the never-Trump camp — some Republicans and other prominent conservatives aiming to prevent Trump from obtaining the party’s presidential nomination — will disrupt proceedings this week.
“The Trump team is confident they’re going to be able to shut them down. But there’s a lot of people on edge about that as well,” Stephanopoulos said. “In fact, when I talked to the [Republican National Committee] Chair Reince Priebus yesterday about that, he seemed pretty irritated by the never-Trump forces.”
“If [they] want to delay the proceedings, all they’re doing is delaying the evening and helping Hillary Clinton,” Priebus said on ABC’s "This Week” on Sunday. “I’m not going to just shut people down,” he said of delegates who may try to block Trump’s nomination. “But I’m also going to make sure that our rules are followed. And I don’t think they’re going to be successful.”
Priebus said that never-Trump delegates need to recognize that GOP voters have made their choice. “They don’t like the idea that 14 million people ... picked someone that they didn’t want,” he said. “It’s a binary choice. It’s either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton.”
ABC News’ Meghan Keneally and Nicki Rossoll contributed to this report.