June 30, 2016

Martinez doesn’t plan on speaking at Trump’s RNC

Gage Skidmore

Donald Trump at Arizona rally in March, 2016. Flickr/cc

Gov. Susana Martinez doesn’t plan on speaking at the Republican National Convention this summer, four years after giving a highly regarded speech at the convention where Republicans nominated Mitt Romney.

Gov. Susana Martinez

Gov. Susana Martinez

This time, however, Martinez is among the Republicans who are doing their best to avoid their party’s presumptive presidential nominee.

A spokesman for Martinez told the Albuquerque Journal that she does not plan to speak at the convention.

“Gov. Martinez will hold a series of meetings as the head of the RGA and looks forward to discussing reforms with governors across the country that can have a positive impact on New Mexico,” Martinez spokesman Michael Lonergan said Wednesday. “She has no plans to speak at the convention.”

Lonergan typically does not respond to requests for comment from NM Political Report.

Martinez will be at the convention, due to her role as chairman of the Republican Governors Association. She did not attend a rally held by Trump in Albuquerque in May and Trump criticized Martinez in front of thousands.

Martinez is one of many politicians who do not plan on speaking at the convention even as Trump plans for alternatives.

A Trump spokesperson declined to comment on this year’s convention plans. But the billionaire, who has fashioned himself as a Beltway outsider, has hinted that he wants nonpoliticians to have major roles. During a rally this month, Trump floated the idea of having a “Winner’s Evening,” which would spotlight sports stars.

Former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson was reportedly on Trump’s list, though Trump denied this on Twitter. Hall of Fame Tight End and former Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka said he would not speak.

Donald Trump at Arizona rally in March, 2016. Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore cc

Gage Skidmore

Donald Trump at Arizona rally in March, 2016. Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore cc

Other high profile Republicans, however, will keep their distance from the RNC and Trump.

George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, the two living Republican presidents, will not attend the convention. Neither will John McCain or Mitt Romney, two former Republican presidential nominees. Bob Dole is the only living Republican to appear on the presidential ballot to say he will attend the convention.

Current politicians are also avoiding the convention where Trump is expected to officially become the Republican standard-bearer.

U.S. Senators Jeff Flake, of Arizona, Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire and Ben Sasse of Nebraska, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina have also aid they will not attend.

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner said they will not attend.

A number of members of the House also have said they would not attend.