After being introduced by daughter and adviser Ivanka Trump, the president hit the stage.
“My fellow Americans, tonight, with a heart full of gratitude and boundless optimism, I proudly accept this nomination for president of the United States,” he said in front of about 2,000 supporters, sitting side-by-side, most without masks on.
Trump laid out a defense of his record and handling of the economy, immigration, foreign policy, and his support of law enforcement and the military. He also continued the running theme of the RNC: A Joe Biden victory would lead to chaos and lawlessness, he said.
“We have spent the last four years reversing the damage Joe Biden inflicted over the last 47 years,” said Trump.
He continued to project himself as the “law-and-order” candidate, protecting “the American way of life.”
“Your vote will decide whether we protect law-abiding Americans or whether we give free rein to violent anarchists and agitators and criminals who threaten our citizens,” Trump said.
The RNC overlapped with the ongoing civil unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin, sparked by the police shooting of Black man Jacob Blake. Trump only mentioned the city’s name once and lumped it in with other Democratic-run cities he has been critical of.
The president also defended his administration’s coronavirus response.
“We are delivering life-saving therapies and will produce a vaccine before the end of the year — or maybe even sooner,” he promised.
So far, nearly 6 million Americans have been infected with COVID-19, and 180,000 have died.
And, just as Trump tweeted during Biden’s speech last week at the Democratic National Convention, the former vice president did the same Thursday night.
The last sitting president to accept a party’s nomination from the White House was Franklin D. Roosevelt ahead of his third term.