'We're going to win so big,' Trump tells Republican convention
Trump fans insist delegates should heed the will of the grassroots of the party and make him the Republican nominee without equivocation. Photograph: (Getty)
Donald Trump tried to put the Republican convention back on track following a rank-and-file revolt on Monday, telling party delegates "we're going to win" the White House.
Making a surprise cameo appearance at the gathering in Cleveland to introduce his wife Melania, the bombastic tycoon showed confidence that belied the day's spasm of a public division.
"We're going to win so big," said Trump. "Ladies and gentlemen, it is my great honor to present the next First Lady of the United States."
Trump, who broke with tradition by appearing at the convention before his nomination, was addressing an audience that hours earlier erupted into jeers and yelling as anti-Trump Republicans insisted their voice be heard.
Trump fans insist delegates should heed the will of the grassroots of the party and make him the Republican nominee without equivocation.
The billionaire won a thumping victory in a series of statewide party elections, garnering more than 13 million votes -- the most of any Republican nominee ever.
This was meant to be Trump's moment -- the point at which he put the lid on Republican divisions and marched the party toward November's election and the White House. Ahead of the convention he had tried to assuage conservative critics and bring the party together by naming Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his running mate.
But it was Trump's Slovenian-born wife Melania who stepped up as his chief advocate on the convention's opening day. She took the stage with all the allure of a former model and in a strong accent made the case for Americans to entrust Trump with the presidency.
After his wife, the candidate's team will send his son and daughters to the convention stage in the coming days.
Much now rides on Trump and his supporters focusing on issues that unite Republicans: support for the armed forces and concern about law and order. But the Trump card may be hatred of the presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
The Republican convention ends Thursday with a speech from the 70-year-old billionaire real estate mogul. The Democrats stage their own convention next week in Philadelphia.