NEWS BRIEF The most highly anticipated invite list of the year is out—and it’s missing a few names.
On Thursday, the speakers list for the Republican national convention was released—and, to some extent, it promises to fulfill the “showbiz” quality Donald Trump hoped to bring to the gathering. It includes professional golfer Natalie Gulbis and Ultimate Fighting Championship president Dana White.
There was clearly considerable effort invested in ensuring that the speakers would look more like the general electorate than the party’s base. The list includes a number of women—Senator Joni Ernst; Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi; Eileen Collins, the first woman to command a U.S. spacecraft; and Melania and Ivanka Trump. Then there are Jamiel Shaw Sr. and Darryl Glenn, two African Americans who will address the convention.
But the lineup is notably short on GOP star power. Only five of the 16 Republicans who ran against Trump will be speaking, including Ted Cruz, Mike Huckabee, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, and Scott Walker. Ohio Governor John Kasich, whose state is hosting the convention, and Indiana Governor Mike Pence, a possible Trump VP pick, are not listed to speak. Kasich has not endorsed Trump and conceded in a Washington Post interview that his absence from the convention will be “strange.” Pence, on the other hand, met Trump and his family on Wednesday, fueling speculation that he might be his running mate—which might explain his absence from the list. Former Republican presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, Senator John McCain, and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin are also not included in the list.