Trump and Republicans Engage in Revisionism on His Record

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The speakers on Monday night reflected the Trumpified Republican Party. A few of the president’s allies in Congress, including Representatives Jim Jordan of Ohio and Steve Scalise of Louisiana, delivered remarks. A handful of participants representing the Republican Party’s scant racial diversity spoke later in the evening, among them Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, the only Black Republican in the Senate, and the former United Nations ambassador, Nikki R. Haley, who is Indian-American.

But much of the program appeared aimed at antagonizing the left, including the appearances by Mr. Kirk and the McCloskeys, and issuing stark warnings about civil disorder.

The former football star Herschel Walker, who identified himself as a longtime friend of Mr. Trump’s, pushed back on what he called unfair depictions of the president as a racist — a sign, perhaps, of Republicans’ concerns that a wide range of voters see Mr. Trump in those terms, including a sizable number of whites.

“I take it as a personal insult that people would think I would have a 37-year friendship with a racist,” said Mr. Walker, who is Black. “People who think that don’t know what they are talking about.”

In her remarks, Ms. Haley depicted Mr. Trump as a stern champion of American interests against an unfriendly international order, and attacked Mr. Biden and the Obama administration’s handling of adversaries like North Korea and Iran. Of Mr. Trump, she said, “He tells the world what it needs to hear.”

Underscoring Republicans’ determination to run against the left wing of the Democratic Party, rather than Mr. Trump’s decidedly moderate challenger, Ms. Haley warned that if Mr. Biden were elected, he would report to “Pelosi, Sanders and the squad,” employing a widely used nickname for four progressive women of color in the House including Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York.

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