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True Believers, Protesters And Trump: Scenes From Cleveland

(Left) Pro-Donald Trump buttons for sale on the street in Cleveland. (Center) A large screen truck with a photo of President Ronald Reagan can be seen through a crowd as it is stopped at a light. (Right) Supporters listen to speakers at a pro-Trump rally on Tuesday.
(Left) Pro-Donald Trump buttons for sale on the street in Cleveland. (Center) A large screen truck with a photo of President Ronald Reagan can be seen through a crowd as it is stopped at a light. (Right) Supporters listen to speakers at a pro-Trump rally on Tuesday.

A national convention aims to offer a space for a political party to unify — to hone its message, set aside internal divisions and move forward toward a shared adversary. As Republicans sweep up confetti and try to forget the Ted Cruz-Donald Trump flame war, Democrats pack their bags for Philadelphia, hoping to unite their own badly split party.

It's easy to say the divisions that surface in a major election year are somehow worse than the one before, anger and divisiveness compounding but with little change. The political rhetoric stays the same, year after year: "... We are going to fix the system."

During her week in Cleveland, photographer Gabriella Demczuk explored the ways that people are embracing and challenging the Republican Party's mission in this election — both from inside and outside the party. Here is a selection of what she saw.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

The day before the convention officially started, police monitor protesters — including those marching with the Black Lives Matter movement — as they work their way through the streets of Cleveland. Meanwhile, delegates line up for an official convention party (right).
/ Gabriella Demczuk for NPR
The day before the convention officially started, police monitor protesters — including those marching with the Black Lives Matter movement — as they work their way through the streets of Cleveland. Meanwhile, delegates line up for an official convention party (right).

Attendees take in Wednesday evening's program at the convention hall through different screens.
/ Gabriella Demczuk for NPR
Attendees take in Wednesday evening's program at the convention hall through different screens.