On the second night of the convention, Republicans shifted focus from courage to compassion, emphasizing issues such as health care and education. First lady Laura Bush and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger delivered the main speeches on the night with the theme "People of Compassion." The actor-politician hailed his adopted country as "the best hope of democracy" and praised President Bush as the man to lead it. The first lady described the president as a man who can be trusted. "You can count on him, especially in a crisis," she said. Full story | Blog, Day 1
NOTE: All Times Eastern and subject to change
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas called the second day of the Republican National Convention to order. A rolling roll call delegates gave Bush a majority of the 2,509 delegates needed to clinch his renomination, with Pennsylvania -- a key November battleground -- putting him over the top.
Extolling what she called GOP core values, Sen. Elizabeth Dole of North Carolina unabashedly championed her party's conservative stance against same-sex marriage and in favor of the rights of the unborn. She also praised Bush's leadership abilities: "Led now by President Bush, this Grand Old Party is still guided by a moral compass, its roots deep in the firm soil of timeless truths."
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist -- who is also a medical doctor -- praised healthcare advances such as Medicare changes during the president's first term and lambasted Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry as "the personal injury lawyer's best friend." Speaking of the Massachusetts senator's plan for health insurance, Frist said, "I will tell you what Sen. Kerry's prescription will be: Take a handful of tax increases and don't call me in the morning."
Schools are being held more accountable and are progressing as a result of the Bush administration's No Child Left Behind Act, Secretary of Education Rod Paige told the delegates. "[Bush] proposed a plan ... high standards, measurable goals, real consequences and resources to get the job done," Paige said. "He promised results. He delivered results."
California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger took to the stage to warn against "economic girlie men" and to use his success story as illustration of the compassion of the American people. "This is an amazing moment for me. To think that a once-scrawny boy from Austria could grow up to become governor of California and stand in Madison Square Garden to speak on behalf of the president of the United States -- that is an immigrant's dream. It is the American dream."
Introduced by her twin daughters and the president via satellite, first lady Laura Bush delivered personal insights into her husband's decision to go to war and described him as a compassionate conservative, a decisive leader and a man to lean on in tough times. She also answered a question voters regularly ask: Why should her husband be re-elected? Bush's vision for a safer world is the reason for four more years, she said. "We are living in the midst of the most historic struggle my generation has ever known. The stakes are so high."