Politics

Donald Trump is now officially the Republican nominee for president. He delivered an expansive, sometimes dark, acceptance speech Thursday night, reiterating promises to build a wall on the southern border of the United States, bar immigrants from terror-linked states and overhaul international trade deals.

Of course, central to Trump’s nomination speech was his assurance that he would “make America great again.”

Jeffrey Klusmeier, chairman of Louisville’s Young Professionals for Trump, hosted a Republican National Convention viewing party.

“A lot of people think those are just words and platitudes, but he really means them,” Klusmeier said. “Trump is an accomplished man, he’s done a lot for our country and I think he’s going to be a great president.”

The central theme of Trump’s speech was “law and order,” saying the country was hampered by crime and illegal immigration. The New York businessman frequently associated illegal immigration with violence in his speech, citing stories in which citizens had been harmed or killed by people who entered the country unlawfully.

“The crime and violence that today afflicts our nation will soon come to an end,” Trump said. “Beginning on Jan. 20, 2017, safety will be restored.”

Trump highlighted the shooting at a gay club in Orlando Florida as an egregious example of recent violence in the country. Trump said he would do everything in his power to “protect LGBTQ citizens from the violence and oppression of a hateful foreign ideology.”

The line drew loud applause from the crowd of Republicans in Cleveland. Trump called attention to the moment.

“And I have to say as a Republican, it is so nice to hear you cheering for what I just said,” Trump said. “Thank you.”

Klusmeier in Louisville said he was proud that Trump talked about the LGBTQ community.

“I was proud that he actually said it,” Klusmeier said. “Somebody’s got to say it. It doesn’t matter what your sexual preference is or your religion, everybody deserves to be safe.”

As for the general election, Klusmeier predicted that it would be “like a reality TV show” that would wind up engaging more people in the political process.

“There’s going to be so many people excited just to see the debate just because the unpredictability of it,” Klusmeier said.

“It’s going to be a fun election.”

Ryland Barton is the Capitol bureau chief for Kentucky Public Radio.