CLEVELAND, July 21, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 2016 Republican National Convention (RNC) is holding its final day of proceedings in Cleveland, Ohio, today. The events and speakers featured in the Convention's evening program will expand upon the theme: "Make America One Again."
America faces serious challenges at home and threats from abroad. In order to turn our challenges into opportunities and keep America secure, we need leaders who will focus on what unites us, not what divides us. Donald Trump and Mike Pence will move our country beyond the divisive identity politics that have been holding us back by restoring leadership, building trust, and focusing on our shared love of country and our common goal of making America great again.
The speakers participating in tonight's program will highlight our party's vision for bringing Americans together and creating the conditions that will allow everyone – young people, working families, and entrepreneurs – to pursue their aspirations. Below are excerpts from a select group of the speeches to be delivered as part of this evening's program. Speaker background information is also provided.
Note the excerpts are as prepared for delivery.
MAKE AMERICA ONE AGAIN THURSDAY, JULY 21
Brock Mealer, Motivational Speaker Brock Mealer is a walking miracle. After suffering a spinal cord injury on Christmas Eve of 2007, he was told that he had a one-percent chance of ever walking again. Mealer's story struck the hearts of millions of Americans. Mealer sustained his injury in a car crash involving several members of his family just five minutes away from their home. His brother Elliot, an offensive lineman headed to the University of Michigan to play football, was able to free Brock from the wreckage, but the two brothers lost their father, David, and Elliot's girlfriend, Hollis Richer, in the crash. Today, Brock has conquered the odds and is able to walk again.
"I defied the odds, but I couldn't do it on my own. Donald Trump can't do it alone either. He needs our help and support. Just as Michigan was willing to adopt a Buckeye, for a cause greater than ourselves, we can unite behind Donald Trump to Make America One Again."
U.S. Representative Marsha Blackburn (TN-7) Rep. Marsha Blackburn was first elected to Congress from the 7th District of Tennessee in 2002. As a small businesswoman, author, mother, grandmother, and Member of Congress, she is dedicated to making America a more prosperous place to live. No stranger to adversity and hard work, Blackburn went to college on a 4-H scholarship and worked her way through school selling books for the Southwestern Company. She was one of the company's first female sales associates and one of their first female sales managers. She assisted the company in establishing a division focused on women.
"We are in desperate need of true leadership and unity. The last eight years have been a challenge, to our national and household budgets, our Constitution, to the men and women who give their lives and sacred honor to protect both. Donald Trump is a leader who has seen challenges, learned lessons, solved problems, delivered results. Some of our greatest leaders have been people who worked in the real world, know firsthand how cumbersome rules and unnecessary regulations get in the way of greatness. I want a president who knows leadership is not as it appears, but as it performs."
Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin Mary Fallin is the governor of Oklahoma. The first woman elected to the job, Fallin earned the position through years of service to the people of her state. Fallin started her career in politics by serving two terms as a state representative. She later serves as lieutenant governor and the congresswoman from the 5th District of Oklahoma. Fallin has served as the chairman of the National Governors Association, where she led a nationwide initiative to help better align education with the needs of a modern-day workforce.
On national unity: "When I look back on my childhood, my America, I don't see a perfect place. But we were united by a simple belief: that no matter who you were or where you came from, better days were just ahead for America."
On the Republican Party: "We are one in our belief that America must address the national debt – not by increasing taxes – but by increasing opportunity. We are one in our belief that we must protect our borders, and promote fair trade that puts American workers first. We are one in our belief that we must stand with allies like Israel, a beacon of freedom and democracy in the Middle East. We are one in our belief that we must respect and honor our military, veterans, and law enforcement, whose sacrifice keeps us safe and free. And we are one in our belief in that every life is precious, regardless of race or class, including the lives of unborn children."
Reince Priebus, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus' three terms make him the longest-serving chairman in modern history. During his first term as chairman, Priebus oversaw a dramatic turnaround of the RNC, rescuing its finances, rebuilding its operations, and implementing the best ground game effort the committee had ever organized. Priebus dedicated his second term to taking the party's message of freedom and economic opportunity to all states and all communities. By welcoming new voices and voters and harnessing the power of new technology, he led the RNC in building the infrastructure needed for a landslide GOP victory in the midterm elections. Now in his third term, Priebus is working to deliver victories in races across the country in the 2016 campaign.
"What separates Republicans from Democrats is our belief in better. We believe in better schools. A better healthcare system. A better economy which rewards hard work no matter where or when you punch the clock.
"And most of all, we believe in a better chance at the American dream for everyone. The Republican Party will not stop until it becomes a reality. And that's why we need to stop Hillary Clinton."
Peter Thiel, Venture Capitalist As a venture capitalist and entrepreneur, Peter Thiel has been involved in some of the most dynamic companies to emerge from Silicon Valley over the past two decades. In 1998, Thiel made e-commerce easier, faster, and more secure by co-founding PayPal, defining a new era of fast and secure online commerce. He was the first outside investor and director at Facebook, and also launched Palantir Technologies, where he serves as chairman of the board of directors. Peter established and funds the Thiel Foundation, which promotes freedom in all its forms while working to advance technological progress and long-term thinking about the future.
"I don't pretend to agree with every plank in our party's platform. But fake culture wars only distract us from our economic decline. And nobody in this race is being honest about it except Donald Trump.
"While it is fitting to talk about who we are, today it's even more important to remember where we came from. For me that is Cleveland, and the bright future it promised.
"When Donald Trump asks us to Make America Great Again, he's not suggesting a return to the past. He's running to lead us back to that bright future."
Pastor Mark Burns, Co-Founder and CEO of The NOW Television Network Pastor Mark Burns is the co-founder and CEO of The NOW Television Network, a Christian television network based out of South Carolina that reaches 11 million homes in the U.S., in Canada, on Roku, and online at theNOWnetwork.org. Burns is also the creator, executive producer, and host of the Lift Your Voice Gospel Show that currently airs in more than 45 million homes.
" … [L]ack of opportunity breeds desperation. This is true in many of our nation's ghettos and underprivileged communities. Much of protests in urban centers are born out of this kind of desperation. Good jobs, urban economic revitalization, and an opportunity for job training are long-term solutions that can turn our troubled cities around.
" as Republicans are declaring to the world that we are more determined than ever to listen to the cries of the disenfranchised, of the low-income and at-risk communities. And I know, without a shadow of doubt, that Donald J. Trump will make sure that all Americans will have jobs!"
Paid for by the Committee on Arrangements for the 2016 Republican National Convention. Not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. www.convention.gop.