Donald Trump is not a normal American presidential nominee, and there has been very little normal about the Republican convention that has now officially confirmed his nomination.
Trump’s defining attributes have always been intemperance, divisiveness and indiscipline, so it should surprise no-one that “his” convention was so intemperate, divided, and close to outright farce.
But however “eventful” the convention might have been, Trump’s formal nomination was always to be the centrepiece of the occasion. With due respect to the cast of reluctant colleagues, relatives and d-list celebrities spread out over the days before, Trump was always centre of attention.
Likewise, it was during his acceptance speech that the largest part of the general public tuned into proceedings – many perhaps paying full attention to the campaign for the first time.
For his committed supporters, meanwhile, Trump played exactly the tunes they wanted to hear, his performance coloured by a dark intensity. He painted a bleak (and inaccurate) picture of an America overwhelmed by violent crime, before declaring himself “the law and order candidate” and promising that upon his election “safety will be restored”.