Most of the drama on day one of the Republican National Convention came in the most unlikely form.
It was a row about rules. I know it sounds boring – but stick with me.
The people behind the “Dump Trump” campaign made their last real effort to unseat the prospective presidential nominee when they attempted to rally support for a roll call vote to change the rule about who delegates must vote for.
If successful, it would have allowed the delegates to vote for any presidential candidate they wanted rather than the candidate their state was tied to after the primaries.
I could explain all the intricacies and all the manoeuvring but it boiled down to this: They failed.
There was anger and animosity in the convention hall from both sides. Trump supporters wanted the party to present a united front, the anti-Trump voices felt they had been cheated and the system was rigged by party leaders.
It was their last and best chance to stop Trump. It didn’t work.
The Dump Trump people say they’ll try again. The reality is that only something extraordinary will stop the businessman from accepting the party’s nomination later this week.
And at this stage, I have no idea what that extraordinary thing could be.
The Republican Party is desperate to show it is united behind its candidate, even as some senior Republican figures opted to stay away from Trump’s coronation.
The last two Republican presidents, both named Bush, were not present. Neither were the last two Republican presidential candidates and some senior senators and governors.
Those notably missing from the convention have been branded “losers” or “the past” by detractors, which does little for the idea of renewed party unity.
The Republican convention was meant to be all about unity. It’s gotten off to a very disunited start.