GOP comes to Cleveland: Ohio hosts first convention in 80 years


In 2016, Ohio hosted its first presidential convention since the 1930s.

The Republican Party took over Cleveland for the third week in July as Donald Trump accepted the party’s nomination.

It was surprising that it took Ohio so long to host another national convention. The state, always a swing state, last hosted a convention in 1936 when the Republican nominated Alfred Landon in Cleveland. Landon lost to Democratic President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

VIDEO: Look back at Ohio’s presidential convention history

The road to Cleveland was competitive as several other cities were also competing for the big event. Cincinnati and Columbus were also in the running to host one of the conventions. For a moment it looked like Ohio may host both presidential conventions as Columbus was one of three finalists for the Democrats.

RELATED: Columbus 1 of 3 finalists to host 2016 Democratic Convention

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Cleveland just had a few weeks to get ready

Quicken Loans Arena was the home of the GOP convention and since the Cleveland Cavaliers went into the postseason, ultimately winning the NBA Championship, there was just a few weeks to transform The Q.

Dayton.com reporter Amelia Robinson went to Cleveland the week before the convention and got a look at how the transformation happened.

RELATED: Watch how The Q was transformed for the GOP

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Ohio delegates were slow to embrace Trump

Even before the convention in Cleveland started, one of the big stories was that Ohio Gov. John Kasich wasn’t even attending the convention in his own state. Ohio Sen. Rob Portman also never set foot in the convention hall.

Nearly a quarter of Ohio’s GOP delegates, who all supported Kasich in the primary, said they wouldn’t vote for Trump as president

RELATED: Ohio delegates prefer Kasich

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Security issues, Melania Trump’s speech focus of opening night

On the first night of the GOP convention in Cleveland, the focus was on national security.

There was also a last-ditch effort by some delegations to stop Trump from becoming the nominee. Their effort failed.

Trump even made a first-night appearance and introduced his wife Melania. She gave a speech that was immediately praised by many, but was later found to have been copied from a speech given by first lady Michelle Obama.

The convention got off to a rough start.

RELATED: Raucous first day ends with call for unity

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Ohio delegates vote for Kasich

On Day 2 of the convention, Trump sealed the nomination, but Ohio’s delegates still were excited about Kasich.

Ohio, which voted for Ohio Gov. John Kasich during the state’s March primary, cast its 66 votes for Kasich. The state’s delegates gave an enthusiastic whoop every time Kasich secured a handful of delegates from other states as well.

RELATED: Ohio delegates react to Trump nomination

RELATED: Kasich’s presence felt even as he skips convention

RELATED: Can Trump win Ohio without Kasich support?

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Convention stayed calm

Despite all of the anticipation of violence, the convention and the streets of Cleveland stayed calm all week.

Our reporter Amelia Robinson even went out and interviewed some of the protesters.

RELATED: Militia members bring glocks, AK-47s to Cleveland protests

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Cruz doesn’t endorse Trump; Pence’s moment to shine

The big question on Day 3 of the convention was would former GOP rival Texas Sen. Ted Cruz endorse Trump.

Well, he didn’t and the crowd didn’t like it.

Seeking to introduce himself as a conservative who would balance the ticket and heal the wounds of the Republican Party, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence on Wednesday accepted the nomination as Donald Trump’s vice-presidential running mate and gave an at times fiery speech to a convention crowd eager to walk away enthused about the Republican ticket.

“I’m a Christian, a conservative and a Republican — in that order,” Pence said. “I’m new to this campaign and honestly, I didn’t think I’d be standing here.”

RELATED: Mike Pence at RNC

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Kasich was offered the VP job

On Wednesday of convention week we learned Kasich was offered the vice presidency, but turned it down.

According to a report, Trump gave Kasich the chance to be “the most powerful vice president in history.”

Trump offered the job to Kasich and would have put him in charge of domestic and foreign policy, according to CBS.

RELATED: Gov. Kasich turned down VP offer

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RNC Last Day: Donald Trump grabs nomination, pledges change

Trump said the country is under siege by crime, terrorism, illegal immigration, bad trade deals, weak foreign policy and other threats. He pinned the blame for these problems on President Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, his opponent in the fall campaign.

Trump loaded the speech with tough talk on trade and immigration — signature issues for him throughout the campaign.

“Americans want relief from uncontrolled immigration. Communities want relief. Yet Hillary Clinton is proposing mass amnesty, mass immigration, and mass lawlessness,” he said. “Her plan will overwhelm your schools and hospitals, further reduce your jobs and wages, and make it harder for recent immigrants” to escape from poverty.

RELATED: Video and more on Trump’s acceptance speech


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