California Counts

A collaboration between Capital Public Radio, KQED, KPCC and KPBS to cover the 2016 elections in California.

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Trump Revs Up Crowd, Calif. Delegates During Last Night Of The RNC

  

UPDATE 11 p.m.: The California delegation's 60-mile bus ride back to the hotel was shorter than Donald Trump's address at the Republican National Convention Thursday night. But the speech's length didn't bother the state's delegates.


"I was on my feet clapping the whole time," says Clifford Young, an alternate delegate from San Bernardino.

Young called the speech a "good policy speech" that "covered a lot of territory.

Ventura delegate and California Republican Party board member Mike Osborn said Trump hit all his high points and gave the crowd plenty of red meat.

"The floor became electric in almost like lightning. The folks got revved up," says Osborn. "I've been to a number of conventions, and this one — everybody's pretty excited."

Osborn said the speech flowed well and added Trump's use of a teleprompter helped keep him on-script.


UPDATE 4:25 p.m.: Capital Public Radio's Ben Adler caught up with the top Republican in the California Senate, Minority Leader Jean Fuller of Bakersfield, at the GOP Convention in Cleveland. You can listen to the interview here:

Jean Fuller Interview

Some excerpts:

On why she's a delegate for Donald Trump: "Over time, I became convinced that Trump could win the presidency, he could bring us all together, and I decided to become a Trump delegate."

On whether she's worried Trump could hurt her caucus members and candidates in their state legislative races: "I firmly believe that people are elected from their local areas. ... I worked to make sure that all of my Senate candidates were people that uniquely reflected their area."

On what the Republican Party should do to become more competitive in California: "Making sure that everybody understands what our message is and how we can help them."

On a potential deal to extend California's "cap and trade" greenhouse gas emissions program in the final weeks of legislative session: "There are lots of great solutions out there we can come together on, but that's a big undertaking. And at this point, I'm not sure that I see the pathway there that could work."

On whether she could support extending cap and trade if the oil industry reaches a deal with Gov. Brown: "I do not support cap and trade, but I'm always interested in hearing how we can make something work better - especially something that I don't feel is working very well right now." 


UPDATE 1:15 p.m.: A guest of the California delegation at the Republican National Convention has come down with what is suspected to be another case of norovirus.

As of Tuesday morning, a total of 14 staffers and volunteers had contracted the virus, which the Center for Disease Control says is "highly contagious" and can cause stomach pain, nausea and diarrhea.

This would be the first new case since the outbreak that started Monday.


UPDATE 10:15 a.m.: Californians at the Republican National Convention are eagerly awaiting Donald Trump's speech Thursday night.

"You know, I'd just like to hear him kind of repeat a lot of the things we've heard at the convention so far, and do what Donald does, I guess — that's the best way I can put it," says Andrew Feliz.

Antonio Amador, a delegate from Lodi, who's also running for Congress, says he's curious if Trump will address the speech by Ted Cruz, who did not give his endorsement to the nominee.

"It's not so much that I want to hear it, but I am very curious as to his response," says Amador.

Betty Tom Chu, a former Monterey Park mayor and an alternate delegate, says she wants Trump to unify the Republican Party.

"Rally our support together and say things that we can get the Ted Cruz(es) to say, 'I'm with you,'" she says.

Trump's speech will air on Capital Public Radio and at CapRadio.org.


UPDATE 8 a.m.: CapRadio's Ben Adler recaps Day 3 of the Republican National Convention. He also gives a preview of Day 4, the final day of the convention and the day when Donald Trump officially accepts the Republican Party's nomination.

Ben Adler At The Republican National Convention

Ben Adler On Insight


UPDATE 7:16 a.m.: California delegates to the Republican National Convention are blasting Texas Senator Ted Cruz for not endorsing GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump.

Listen to California delegate Alyssa Nicole Salogie reacting to Cruz's refusal to endorse:

Delegates React To Ted Cruz's Refusal To Endorse Trump


ORIGINAL POST: The hundreds of California delegates, alternates and guests at the Republican National Convention include plenty of colorful characters. 

The California delegation asked its delegates and alternates to swap credentials for a while Wednesday night. So alternate Rachel Gunther of Long Beach got her first chance to go on the floor. She almost skipped the night entirely.

"I had a horrible headache and I wasn't gonna come tonight," says Gunther. 

But her roommate convinced her to come and convinced her to wear a certain pair of overalls.

"American flag overalls, red white and blue," says Gunther.

Gunther bought them at a thrift store. She's Filipina-American. Her parents brought her to the United States when she was 10. And Donald Trump's position on immigration resonates with her.

"Being a legal immigrant, I know the sacrifices that my parents went through to get us here legally," says Gunther. "And I resent as a legal immigrant the chaos and inequity, that has been caused by illegal immigration or immigration that has not been enacted properly and followed." 

Gunther wasn't the only Californian sporting the stars and stripes. An Orange County alternate and his son each wore American flag suits. 

And then, there's also B Cooper the Patriot. He has six different Revolutionary War outfits.

"I'm wearing a full battle dress for the North Carolina regiment," says Cooper. "I'm also wearing my powder keg and I don't have my musket, because if I bring in my musket, I might use it." 

BCooper 072116

Ben Adler/ Capital Public Radio

But he says he never dresses up as generals.

"I'm the warrior," says Cooper. 

Cooper's from Arizona but he spends time in Beverly Hills, so he's hung out this week with both state's delegations.

"In 1787, we were losing a war," he says. "And right now, we're losing the war. So I feel like we're in 1787 all over again. The battle's not over yet. The war's not over yet."

Cooper and Gunther are just two of the many passionate and colorful Donald Trump supporters with the California delegation at the Republican National Convention.