Donald Trump's kids might have saved the convention

Story highlights

  • Four members of Trump's clan capitalized on their prime-time speaking slots
  • After months of campaigning, most of the children are familiar faces to Americans

Cleveland (CNN)In a party convention beset by distractions -- Melania Trump's plagiarism, Ted Cruz's defiance -- there's been one part of the program that delegates say has been nearly flawless: Donald Trump's grown children.

Four members of Trump's clan capitalized on their prime-time speaking slots. Donald Trump Jr. shared stories of growing up with his dad on job sites and in the office; Tiffany Trump offered anecdotes about the personal notes he wrote on her report cards and Eric Trump shared his pride in being a Trump. And in one of the highest points of the entire convention, Ivanka Trump delivered a passionate, well-received speech on the convention's final night that extended a hand to women voters by promising that her father would work to close the gender pay gap.
    After months of campaigning, most of the children are familiar faces to Americans. Donald Jr., Eric and Ivanka have all been regular guests on national news programs and they serve as surrogates with the candidate on the trail. In April, Trump's children, including 22-year-old Tiffany, participated in a CNN town hall. And when dad went looking for a running mate this summer, they all were a part of the process that resulted in choosing Indiana Gov. Mike Pence.
    "I have seen this man up close. His utter lack of pretense, his respect for the people who work for him, and his devotion to his family," Pence said of Trump Wednesday in his acceptance speech. "If you still doubt what I'm saying, as we say back home, you can't fake good kids. How about his amazing children? Aren't they something? These are the true measures of our nominee."
    Pence isn't the only one who seems enamored. When delegates were asked on the convention floor to name something they've learned about Trump this week -- a man who has been in the public eye for decades -- there was little mention of policy. But almost all mentioned the kids.
    "I have learned that he is a very good father," said Billie Sue Hoggard, a delegate from Arkansas. "I admire that in him."
    Many said they were surprised about what they've seen from the Trump kids, especially given their upbringing in the public eye surrounded by celebrity, a life that many offspring of famous figures struggle to overcome.
    "They're eloquent," said Dana Dougherty, a delegate from Florida holding a Trump doll. "It really shows what a family man he is."