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Republican Party opens national convention to nominate Trump as presidential candidate

All News 05:08 July 19, 2016

WASHINGTON, July 18 (Yonhap) -- The U.S. Republican Party opened its national convention Monday to officially nominate Donald Trump as its standard-bearer for the November presidential election as the party remains deeply divided over his candidacy.

The four-day convention in Cleveland, Ohio, will culminate with a Trump speech accepting the nomination on Thursday. His nomination comes amid persisting questions about whether the combative candidate will be able to put the badly divided party together.

Underlining the division, high-profile Republicans are skipping the convention, including former Presidents George W. Bush and George H.W. Bush, former Republican presidential nominees Mitt Romney and John McCain, as well as John Kasich, the governor of the state hosting the convention.

During the convention, about 60 people will take the podium to make speeches in support of Trump, including former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former presidential primary rivals Sen. Ted Cruz and Ben Carson.

The party will also unveil its new policy platform and formally select Indiana Gov. Mike Pence as Trump's vice presidential running mate. Trump named Pence as his pick Friday.

Pence, 57, is known as a staunch conservative and a member of the conservative Tea Party movement. A veteran politician with a dozen years as a House lawmaker before becoming governor in 2013, Pence could also strengthen Trump's connections to Congress and the party.

Trump's Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, is scheduled to be nominated at the Democratic National Convention set for July 25-28 in Philadelphia.

Clinton is expected to name her vice presidential pick later this week. Leading candidates include Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

jschang@yna.co.kr
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