In two separate podcasts Thursday, Charisma Media founder Steve Strang and political strategist Julianne Shinto of Imprimatur, who is attending the Republican National Convention, discussed what is happening this week in Cleveland.
Strang, who endorsed U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) early in the GOP presidential primary race, now backs the party nominee, Donald Trump. He noted, however, that there remain some holdouts among evangelicals.
"It's very different; very divisive," Shinto agreed. "I really have to ask conservatives, 'What do we want to do?' We're all on the same team, and, really, it's very frustrating for those of us who have been working hard, who understand what the stakes here are, and really want to make sure this country can be the best it can possibly be."
Seeing how the world is seemingly spinning out of control of late, Strang noted the situation is likely to continue under Democratic presidential nominee-in-waiting Hillary Clinton. He said he doesn't understand why people aren't lining up behind Trump's candidacy, saying the alternative would be "so bad."
Shinto, who also does consulting work in Canada and the United Kingdom, said the situation is both bad and dangerous. She said "everyone in the Consevative Party" in the U.K. is "furious" with President Obama over the Iran nuclear deal.
"He has made the world more dangerous forever," she said. "It's not something we will recover from in my lifetime. I don't see how we can ever recover from this.
"We certainly have to take steps to manage it, to make it the best it can be ... Every single day that agreement is in place, we are at greater risk."
Shinto said she doesn't know how Ohio Gov. John Kasich's boycott of the convention would affect the general election, although she noted he's been meeting with groups on the sidelines. She also noted she personally had lunch with him earlier in the week.
"I don't understand in this particular situation why he doesn't have his eye on the ball," she said. "Can we win without Ohio? Gosh, I don't know. I don't know what people are going to do.
"I've got to think that some conservatives will come to their senses and will do the right thing when the time comes. But, I can't even understand the #NeverTrumpers, I can't understand the boycott and I can't understand some of the people who have not [supported Trump], because there's really so much at stake."
Shinto said it would be "extremely immature" to sit out the November election. Millions of Christians sat out last election because they weren't happy, she added, which led to the re-election of President Obama.
"We're adults, and we have to realize that our vote changes people's lives," she said. "Our lives, our children's lives and our grandchildren's lives. And, it will change the world."
Trump is "a good leader," she added, and is likely to be a good president. She said he would be likely to surround himself with the "right people," largely because of the ego many target for criticism.
"If there's one thing we can say about Donald Trump, it's that he has an ego," she said. "He doesn't want to be the worst president we've ever had. Believe me, he wants to be the best there ever was. I promise you that. No one would disagree with me that the man's got an ego like we may never have seen.
"I think based on that alone, I think voters can take to the bank he's going to surround himself with people that can get it done. He does have a track record of doing things that make sense and doing things that will move the ball forward. I really do think that he will be a strong leader."
Click here to listen to the first podcast in its entirety.
Strang and Shinto also discussed what is happening outside the Quicken Loans Arena in downtown Cleveland. Much of it is information the mainstream media has kept away from its audience.
Noting that Black Lives Matter—which she described as a "group of terrorists"—were present "in full force," Shinto said the convention has also attracted police from nearly all 50 states. She said with all of the protests, problems and confrontations, she is grateful for the police presence.
But there is another group in Cleveland whose presence surprised her. She said there are thousands of Bikers for Trump in Cleveland who are also actively engaged in protecting citizens at the convention from "organizations that want to decide how we live our lives, and are just going to disrupt the process any way they can."
Ultimately, Shinto said the protest groups, such as BLM, Code Pink and the NAACP, will help sway voters to vote for Trump in November.
"I don't think anybody wants their freedoms decided by a bunch of vigilantes who think that because someone may have died at a police officer's hands, that police officers need to be shot," she said. "Nobody thinks we should have anarchy; that's not what anybody wants.
"I think this will direct more people toward order, toward more conservative values, toward more safety. There's no doubt everyone feels safer with a Republican in office. I think this will truly help the conservative movement ...
"In times of danger, in times of war across the world, they tend to go for the more protective, and those tend to be the more conservative candidates."
Click here to listen to the second podcast in its entirety.
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