Colorado's Republicans Are Another Step Closer To Trump Acceptance
Colorado's 37 delegates made waves when they walked out of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, in protest of the rules. Most later voted for Texas Sen. Ted Cruz as the nominee, even though he was no longer in the race.
"I was elected as a pledged Cruz delegate so I caste my ballot as promised for Sen. Ted Cruz," said Republican Secretary of State Wayne Williams.
Now that Donald Trump is formally the Republican presidential nominee, the question in Colorado is whether his candidacy can bring the party together before the November election.
Despite the turmoil, Williams said he has personally accepted the outcome.
"There is the next stage in the process," he said. "There are some who have a harder time moving forward and that's I think often the case. It's never easy if you don't get your top choice."
"This is now Trump versus Hillary."
Delegate and Routt County treasurer Brita Horn agrees that it will be difficult for some folks to move forward. Even though she was a Cruz supporter, she did finally cast a vote for Trump.
"You know what, the battle is over, this fight is over," Horn said. "My guy is not in the field in anymore, he's not there anymore. It's voting, but it's not going to get us to the win we need to do. This is now Trump versus Hillary."
Horn's top issue in this campaign is government waste, and making things more efficient. In the coming months, she wants to hear a lot more policy specifics from Trump.
"We're going to have to get past the one sentence sound bites, and definitely need to hear how is this going to work, I'm looking for action items."
Donald Trump is the Republican nominee for president. #copolitics #rncincle pic.twitter.com/G43wMSeKv4— John Frank ☀️ (@ByJohnFrank) July 22, 2016
Horn also worries that some Republican will sit on the sidelines for the presidential race and focus solely on statewide and local contests.
"They're definitely not happy. They keep talking about getting behind what's called the down ticket," said Horn. "Yes it's going to happen, everyone will work on their guy, but we definitely better have the top of the ticket, we better have Trump too, we need people to get that vote."
Horn and other Colorado Republicans think Trump's choice of running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence helps. Yet, even though Pence has a strong conservative track record, former state party chairman Ryan Call said Trump will have to make more effort in places like Colorado if he hopes to win the presidency.
"It's going to require discipline," he said. "It's going to require a strong and real campaign organization, and it's going to require him willing to be a bit more humble in asking for that vote, not necessarily thinking that he's entitled to it or that he can tweet it in from Trump Tower."
Call – who was in Cleveland as an alternate delegate – is still not sure if he'll vote for Trump. He said he has to feel convinced that Trump could govern in a presidential manner, especially given all the national security threats and ongoing economic problems.
"I think it's an unfortunate reflection of our political process that has resulted in two nominees who are deeply disliked, deeply distrusted. More than anything I want to be able to have confidence that I can trust his judgment and that I can have confidence in his character," said Call.
The Colorado delegation all decked out for #RNCinCLE #copolitics #gopconvention pic.twitter.com/1KQ1uuOdKY— John Frank ☀️ (@ByJohnFrank) July 21, 2016
During his acceptance speech on the final night of the convention, Trump touched on everything from building a wall along the border, to getting better trade deals, and bringing back middle class jobs. He also said he would restore law and order.
"I will work with and appoint the best and brightest prosecutors and law enforcement officials to get the job properly done. In this race for the White House, I am the law and order candidate," Trump said in his speech.
Trump ended his nearly hour and a half speech by promising to all Americans that he will make America strong again, proud again, safe again and great again.
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