By JULIAN ROUTH – – – –
The Republican National Committee on Thursday unveiled the list of speakers at next week’s national convention in Cleveland, a roster the party said emphasizes “real world experience” — and includes Donald Trump’s children.
Notable on the list are New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, seen as top contenders to be Mr. Trump’s vice presidential running mate. Absent is Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, who met with the New York businessman and his children on Wednesday.
“It’s a partial list, we’ll be adding more folks shortly,” Trump spokesman Jason Miller said.
Among the many non-politicians — whom the party boasted in a news release are “non-conventional speakers… emphasizing real world experience” — are Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel, oil billionaire Harold Hamm, UFC President Dana White, Italian-born underwear model and soap opera actor Antonio Sabato, Jr., and decorated ex-Navy Seal Marcus Luttrell.
Party leaders House Speaker Paul Ryan, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus are on the list.
But the party’s last five presidential nominees — Mitt Romney, John McCain, George W. Bush, Bob Dole and George H. W. Bush — are all absent, in an unusual move that illustrates much of the party’s discomfort with Mr. Trump.
Among Mr. Trump’s defeated rivals for the nomination who are set to speak are Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.
Absent from among Mr. Trump’s vanquished contenders are former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and John Kasich, the governor of Ohio, the state hosting the convention.
Govs. Rick Scott of Florida, Mary Fallin of Oklahoma and Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas are on the list, as are Sens. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, Tom Cotton of Arkansas, Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia and Joni Ernst of Iowa.
Mr. Trump’s wife Melania and children Eric, Donald Jr., Ivanka and Tiffany are also set to speak.
Here’s the list:
The Rev. Mark Burns
Phil Ruffin, Las Vegas businessman
Rep. Ryan Zinke, Montana
Mark Geist, Benghazi survivor
John Tiegen, Benghazi survivor
Rep. Michael McCaul, Texas
Sheriff David Clarke
Rep. Sean Duffy, Wisconsin
Darryl Glenn, Senate candidate from Colorado
Sen. Tom Cotton, Arkansas
Karen Vaughn, mother of Navy SEAL killed in Afghanistan
Former Gov. Mike Huckabee, Arkansas
Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, New York City
Sen. Joni Ernst, Iowa
Marcus Luttrell, retired Navy SEAL
Dana White, president of Ultimate Fighting Championship
Gov. Asa Hutchinson, Arkansas
Attorney General Leslie Rutledge, Arkansas
Former U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey
Sen. Jeff Sessions, Alabama
Retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn
House Speaker Paul Ryan, Wisconsin
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, California
Kerry Woolard, Trump Winery general manager
Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, West Virginia
Dr. Ben Carson, retired neurosurgeon and former presidential candidate
Co-Chair Sharon Day
Natalie Gulbis, professional golfer
Kimberlin Brown, actress
Antonio Sabato, Jr., actor and model
Peter Thiel, Silicon Valley investor
Lt. Col. Eileen Collins, former NASA astronaut
Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Georgia
Michelle Van Etten
Lynne Patton, Vice President of the Eric Trump Foundation
Harold Hamm, oil billioniare
Rep. Chris Collins, New York
Rep. Marsha Blackburn, Tennessee
Gov. Mary Fallin, Oklahoma
The Rev. Darrell Scott
Lisa Shin, Korean-Americans for Trump
Gov. Rick Scott, Florida
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, Wisconsin
Tom Barrack, real-estate investor
Attorney General Pam Bondi, Florida
Jerry Falwell Jr., president of Liberty University
Rabbi Haskel Lookstein
Chris Cox, National Rifle Association
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky
Gov. Chris Christie, New Jersey
Donald J. Trump Jr.
Gov. Scott Walker, Wisconsin