Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) got the lion's share of attention Wednesday night at the Republican National Convention as he formally accepted his nomination to be Mitt Romney's vice presidential candidate.
Ryan's speech focused on the Republican ticket being the change the country needs, and he urged voters to make a “clean break” from President Barack Obama, who Ryan said has run out of ways to help America.
“They've run out of ideas. Their moment came and went. Fear and division is all they've got left,” Ryan said.
He also defended his plan to overhaul the Medicare program.
The GOP is also working to promote an image of racial inclusiveness, although the vast majority of those on the convention floor are white. For example, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice took the stage on Wednesday. She followed Rep. Artur Davis (R-AL) and Mayor Mia Love of Saratoga Springs, UT. Both Davis and Love are black.
During Rice's speech, she said the US has fallen behind China in international trade and not moved far enough towards energy independence.
“We cannot be reluctant to lead, and you cannot lead from behind,” said Rice.
Comedian and author Baratunde Thurston's count of black attendees at the convention has also received significant coverage. Thurston said he'd counted 143 black delegates in attendance as of Wednesday afternoon. David Bositis, a researcher at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, found that only 2% of convention delegates are black, according to The Washington Post.
Reaching black and other ethnic minority voters is imperative, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) told the Post. “We're not generating enough angry white guys to stay in business for the long term,” he said.