1980 Republican National Convention

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1980 Republican National Convention
1980 presidential election
RP1984.png RV1984.png
Nominees
Reagan and Bush
Convention
Date(s) July 14–17, 1980
City Detroit, Michigan
Venue Joe Louis Arena
Keynote speaker Guy Vander Jagt
Candidates
Presidential nominee Ronald Reagan of California
Vice Presidential nominee George Bush of Texas
1976  ·  1984
Ronald Reagan giving his Acceptance Speech

The 1980 National Convention of the Republican Party of the United States convened at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, Michigan, from July 14 to July 17, 1980. The Republican National Convention nominated former Governor Ronald W. Reagan of California for President and former congressman George H. W. Bush of Texas for Vice President.[1] Reagan, running on the theme "Let's Make America Great Again," stayed at the Detroit Plaza Hotel in the Renaissance Center, at the time the world's tallest hotel, and delivered his acceptance speech at Joe Louis Arena.[2] It remains the only major party national political convention to have been held in Detroit.

Presidential vote

Under rules devised by the Nixon administration in 1972, only one candidate was permitted to have his name placed in nomination: Ronald Reagan. This thwarted an attempt by John B. Anderson to have a speaker at the convention. John Connally's expensive campaign yielded only one delegate, (still the most expensive in history to date), who loyally stood by her man to the end.

Republican National Convention Presidential nominee vote, 1980[3]
Candidate Votes Percentage
Ronald Reagan 1,939 97.44%
John B. Anderson 37 1.86%
George H. W. Bush 13 0.65%
John B. Connally and Anne Armstrong 1 each 0.05%
Totals 2,258 100.00%

The Vice Presidential slot

Reagan waited until the Convention in July to announce his choice of a running mate.

Gerald Ford and a possible "co-presidency"

On July 16 Gerald Ford consults with Bob Dole, Howard Baker and Bill Brock before making a decision to ultimately decline Reagan's offer.

During the convention, the possibility of choosing former president Gerald Ford as the vice-presidential nominee was given at least some consideration. Ford asked for certain powers and prerogatives that have been described as making Ford a co-president (had he been chosen).[4][5] Negotiations for the terms of such an arrangement were held at the Detroit Plaza Hotel.[4] These included the return of Henry Kissinger as Secretary of State and the appointment of Alan Greenspan as Secretary of the Treasury in a "package deal".[4][5]

On April 16, Ford was interviewed by Walter Cronkite. According to Bob Schieffer, "The whole convention came to a stop," when, after being asked by Cronkite, Ford did not dismiss rumors that Reagan was considering him as a running mate. However, negotiations ultimately fell apart later that day when the two sides could not come to an agreement, and ultimately George Bush was chosen less than 24 hours before the ticket was announced.[4][5]

The vice presidential vote

Even though Reagan had taken the unprecedented step of announcing his VP choice from the podium of the convention himself, some delegates still resented Bush for having the effrontery to defeat Reagan in a number of primaries, and especially the Iowa caucuses. There was some scattering, and a minor challenge, which as seen below, went nowhere. This would be the last time during the 20th century that the bottom half of the ticket would be contested, as the rules would be changed in 1988 to prevent this from happening.

The following had their names placed in nomination:

Republican National Convention Vice-Presidential nominee vote, 1980[6]
Candidate Votes Percentage
George H. W. Bush 1,832 93.33%
Jesse Helms 54 2.75%
Jack Kemp 42 2.14%
Phil Crane 23 1.17%
James R. Thompson 5 0.26%
John M. Ashbrook, Howard Baker, Henry J. Hyde, Donald Rumsfeld, Eugene Schroeder, William E. Simon, Guy Vander Jagt and Ron Paul 1 each 0.04% each
Totals 2,258 100.00%

See also

References

  1. ^ "It's Reagan plus Bush". New Strait Times. 18 July 1980. Retrieved 16 January 2014. 
  2. ^ "Address Accepting the Presidential Nomination at the Republican National Convention in Detroit". Presidency.ucb.edu. Retrieved 16 January 2014. 
  3. ^ "US President - R Convention Race - Jul 14, 1980". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2011-01-22. 
  4. ^ a b c d Burr, Richard (April 7, 2017). "1980 convention launched ‘Reagan Revolution’". www.detroitnews.com. The Detroit News. Retrieved May 2, 2017. 
  5. ^ a b c Allen, Richard V. "How the Bush Dynasty Almost Wasn't | Hoover Institution". Hoover.org. Archived from the original on 2008-07-06. Retrieved 2011-01-22. 
  6. ^ "US Vice President - R Convention Race - Jul 14, 1980". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2011-01-22. 

External links

  • Ronald Reagan's nomination acceptance speech for President at RNC (video) at C-SPAN
  • Video of Bush nomination acceptance speech for Vice President at RNC (via YouTube)
  • Ronald Reagan's nomination acceptance speech (text) at The American Presidency Project
  • Republican Party platform of 1980 at The American Presidency Project
  • Ronald Reagan's nomination acceptance speech (audio)


Preceded by
1976
Kansas City, Missouri
Republican National Conventions Succeeded by
1984
Dallas, Texas
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