RNC 2020 Live: Melania Trump headlines from Rose Garden, Pompeo to speak from overseas trip


A partially virtual Republican National Convention continues Tuesday under the theme “Land of Opportunity” where President Donald Trump will make another appearance, promising to each night, as speakers are expected to tout his first-term contributions and paint a dark picture of America under the Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

First lady Melania Trump, who takes a softer approach to politics than her husband, will headline Tuesday’s program with remarks from the historic and freshly-renovated White House Rose Garden — four years after her first big GOP speech was criticized for striking similarities to Michelle Obama’s 2008 convention address.

ABC News Live will kick off primetime coverage each day at 7 p.m. ET on the network’s streaming news channel and primetime coverage will air from 10-11 p.m. ET each night of the convention on the ABC Television Network.

Refresh for updates.

7:43 p.m. FiveThirtyEight presidential forecast

Heading into the second night of the RNC, Joe Biden is favored to win the 2020 election — but there’s still time for the race to tighten, according to FiveThirtyEight’s presidential forecast.

7:40 p.m. Nikki Haley says Trump has worked to address America’s racial divide

Former Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley acknowledged on Tuesday that America is not perfect, but said the country has progressed and President Donald Trump has worked to bridge the racial divide.

“America is a work in progress. You know, if you look at the fact that, you know, we were able to fight a Civil War and slavery. We got through the segregation system. We had an African American president,” she said on ABC’s “Good Morning America” Tuesday. “We got an African American female vice presidential candidate, so we are continuing to get better, but we have to always keep improving.”

ABC News chief anchor George Stephanopoulos then pressed Haley to explain what Trump has specifically done to “address this systemic racism and the racial divide,” reminding Haley that he has tweeted a video where a man shouts “white power” and has also praised the Confederate flag, which Haley called a “divisive symbol” in her speech at the convention on Monday night.

“Well, I will tell you first of all, President Trump has passed criminal justice reform which Obama and Biden didn’t do,” she said. “We saw the lowest unemployment of African Americans and Hispanics, which wasn’t under President Obama or Biden. We have seen more funding go to the historically black colleges that never have happened under Obama and Biden.”

Haley continued, “I’m looking at results at what the president has done. We’ve seen real change. Do we have more to do? Absolutely. Are we perfect? No, but we have to continue improving, and that means getting rid of dirty cops, making sure we continue to add to criminal justice reform and making sure that every person, regardless of color and gender, has opportunities to lift them and their families up.”

Read more from her appearance on GMA:

7:31 p.m. Sen. Tim Scott on ABC News Live Prime following Monday night keynote

Sen. Tim Scott closed out the first night of the Republican National Convention with a largely optimistic keynote speech that touched on his own path to the Senate as a Black man and implored Americans to “focus on the promise of the American journey.”

Much of the South Carolina politician’s speech was devoted to his biography. The GOP’s lone Black senator also used his speech to go after Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and highlighted some of the former vice president’s statements on race, including comments from his tense radio interview with Charlamagne tha God back in May.

On Tuesday, ABC News’ Linsey Davis asked Scott about President Trump’s claim that he has done more for Black Americans than any other president.

“There’s a lot of accomplishments under the belt in this administration that really outpaces anything that I’ve seen in my lifetime,” he said on ABC News Live Prime. “I’ll probably leave it right there, though.”

7:17 p.m. House Democrats move to investigate Pompeo’s participation in RNC during official overseas trip

Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, a senior Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, has opened an investigation into Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s participation in the RNC from Israel — and is seeking more information about any internal legal vetting of the move, whether any staff were involved in the setup for his speech, and if his participation impacted planning for his trip to the region.

“It’s absolutely unacceptable that a sitting U.S. Secretary of State, America’s top diplomat, would use official taxpayer-funded business to participate in a political party convention, particularly after the State Department published guidance that explicitly prohibits such activity,” Castro said in a statement earlier Tuesday.

“This action is part of a pattern of politicization of U.S foreign policy, for which President Trump was impeached by the House of Representatives, that undermines America’s standing in the world. The American people deserve a full investigation,” he said.

The State Department has defended Pompeo’s decision to appear at the convention in a “personal capacity” with officials noting that Hatch Act rules for Senate-confirmed political appointees like the secretary are less restrictive than those for rank-and-file diplomats.

“No State Department resources will be used. Staff are not involved in preparing the remarks or in the arrangements for Secretary Pompeo’s appearance. The State Department will not bear any costs in conjunction with this appearance,” the department said in a statement.

— ABC News’ Benjamin Siegel

7:07 p.m. First lady’s top aide says she’ll speak about achieving her dreams as an immigrant

First lady Melania Trump will headline the evening with what her chief of staff describes as a “very uplifting” and “very positive” address that speaks to her experience as American immigrant and includes making the case for her husband’s reelection.

“I would say it is very forward looking, she lays out some of the things she wants to do with the best in the next four years. She also reflects on some of her favorite moments as first lady which there are many. And I think she makes a really good case to the American people about why it is so important that her president continue — her husband continue on as our president for the next four years,” the first lady’s chief of staff Stephanie Grisham told reporters earlier Tuesday.

When the first lady steps to the podium Tuesday night in the historic Rose Garden that she finished renovating just days ahead of the convention — to some controversy — a key task will be appealing to and making her husband more relatable to women voters. A recent ABC/Washington Post poll found that President Donald Trump trails former Vice President Joe Biden’s support among women by double digits, 56% to 40%.

On the topic of whether the first lady could help appeal to suburban women, Grisham told Fox News the first lady is “very, very relatable” and “will talk about her role as a mother. She also commends mothers across this country for how hard they work and especially right now in the age of COVID.”

Grisham said it will be one of the longest speeches the first lady has ever delivered.

–ABC News’ Ben Gittleson

7 p.m. Tuesday night’s speaker lineup

The Trump campaign released its speakers list for the second night of the convention. Below is the order they’re expected to appear:

  • Pastor Norma Urrabazo, pastor at the International Church of Las Vegas
  • Myron Lizer, vice president of the Navajo Nation
  • Richard Beasley, former FBI special agent and president of Global Intelligence Network
  • Jon Ponder, founder and CEO of HOPE for Prisoners, Inc.
  • Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul
  • Jason Joyce, Coast Guard Licensed Captain and lobsterman
  • Cris Peterson, CFO of a Minnesota dairy farm
  • Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and Director of the National Economic Council Larry Kudlow
  • John Peterson, president of Schuette Metals
  • Cissie Graham Lynch, granddaughter of televangelist Billy Graham
  • Eveleth, Minnesota, Mayor Robert Vlaisavljevich
  • Abby Johnson, anti-abortion activist
  • Mary Ann Mendoza, an “Angel Mom” whose son was killed by an undocumented immigrant
  • Nicholas Sandmann, a graduate of Covington Catholic High School in Kentucky who sued news outlets for their coverage of a confrontation between him and a Native American man at the Lincoln Memorial
  • Former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi
  • Tiffany Trump, the president’s daughter
  • Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds
  • Ryan Holets, Albuquerque police officer
  • Florida Lt. Gov. Jeanette Nuñez
  • Eric Trump, the president’s son
  • Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron
  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
  • First lady Melania Trump
  • 7 p.m. Previewing the 2nd night of the RNC

    While he is in Jerusalem on an official trip, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is also slated to speak — making him the first sitting secretary of state to deliver a speech to a party’s political convention in modern times — despite backlash from critics who say that he’s blurring the lines between personal politics and public service.

    Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, Trump’s son Eric and daughter Tiffany, and Nick Sandmann, a former student of Covington Catholic High School in Kentucky who sued media organizations he said misrepresented a well-publicized encounter with a Native American man last year in Washington, are also on the lineup.

    The second night of primetime programming comes as a growing number of Republicans, including former Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake and a handful of former Trump administration officials, have endorsed Biden for president.

    Trump and Vice President Mike Pence were formally nominated to the Republican ticket by separate — and unanimous — roll call votes in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Monday.

    Those scheduled to speak on the Tuesday night include:

  • First lady Melania Trump
  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
  • Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul
  • Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds
  • Florida Lt. Gov. Jeanette Nuñez
  • Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron
  • Former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi
  • Abby Johnson, anti-abortion activist
  • Jason Joyce, Maine lobsterman
  • Myron Lizer, vice president of the Navajo Nation
  • Mary Ann Mendoza, an “Angel Mom” whose son was killed by an undocumented immigrant
  • Megan Pauley
  • Cris Peterson
  • John Peterson
  • Nicholas Sandmann, a student from a Covington, Kentucky, high school who sued news outlets for their coverage of a confrontation between him and a Native American man at the Lincoln Memorial
  • Eric Trump, the president’s son
  • Tiffany Trump, the president’s daughter
  • ABC News’ Kendall Karson contributed to this report.



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