The Latest: Jenner: Harder coming out as Republican


CLEVELAND (AP) — The Latest on the Republican National Convention (all times EDT):

10:35 a.m.

Caitlyn Jenner says it was easier to come out as transgender than it was as a Republican.

The transgender activist and Olympic gold medalist is speaking at a breakfast at the Republican National Convention to promote LGBT inclusion in the GOP. She says Democrats do a better job on the issue.

Jenner is crediting President Barack Obama for taking positive steps for LGBT individuals. She received a smattering of applause from fellow Republicans for acknowledging his move to eliminate the ban on transgender people serving openly in the military.

Jenner says the issue of which bathrooms transgender people use has been used politically for many years. She says she hasn’t had any problems.

Formerly known as Bruce Jenner, Caitlyn Jenner transitioned to her new identity last year.

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10:31 a.m.

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry says President Barack Obama is to blame for long waits and other problems that still plague the Department of Veterans Affairs, two years after a scandal where veterans died while waiting for an appointment.

Perry says veterans have been treated with “disdain” under Obama’s administration. He said Obama has failed to fix the problem, despite appointing a new VA secretary and receiving $16 billion in new funding from Congress.

Perry said Wednesday that “nothing happened” after Congress approved a VA overhaul in 2014.

The reason, Perry said: “The president of the United States doesn’t care about the veterans of this country. That’s not a harsh thing to say. It’s just the truth.”

Perry spoke to Mississippi delegates at a breakfast during the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.

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9:33 a.m.

Donald Trump Jr. says his father’s speech Thursday will be about “taking care of America.”

Trump Jr. says politicians overpromise and under-deliver and that his father is different. Trump Jr. is speaking in Cleveland at a breakfast hosted by the Wall Street Journal.

Asked whether the candidate’s delivery will be more in the style of a freewheeling rally or teleprompter policy speech, Trump Jr. says, “This is a time where there will be discipline.”

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9:24 a.m.

Donald Trump Jr. isn’t ruling out a future in politics.

The 38-year-old New Yorker says that when his five children are older, he’d consider running for office. Trump Jr. is speaking at a breakfast in Cleveland hosted by the Wall Street Journal.

He adds that he’d “love to be able to do it, as a patriot.”

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8:50 a.m.

Donald Trump’s top adviser says that former presidential rival Ted Cruz will have a role in the general election campaign against Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Paul Manafort told CNN’s “New Day” that the Texas senator, who is scheduled to address the Republican National Convention later Wednesday, will offer a message “consistent with what Mr. Trump is talking about.”

Asked whether Cruz will endorse Trump, Manafort said Cruz “will be part of the campaign going forward,” but “in what capacity, I’m not sure.”

He said his words will at least “suggest” that he is backing Trump’s candidacy for president.

Throughout the primaries, Trump consistently called Cruz “Lyin’ Ted” and took jabs at the appearance of his Cruz’ wife, Goldman Sachs executive Heidi Cruz.

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7:12 a.m.

Donald Trump’s campaign chairman says one purpose of the Republican National Convention is to redefine the GOP presidential nominee.

Paul Manafort said on ABC Wednesday that, “we feel that the American people don’t know all of Donald Trump.”

He added that by the time the convention closes this week, Trump’s family and close friends will have painted “a picture of the candidate who’s… a father, a compassionate human being, a successful businessman.”

Manafort said there will be less emphasis on Trump’s signature issues that he highlighted during the GOP primary, such as a temporary ban on Muslim immigration and building a wall between the U.S. and Mexico.

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7:10 a.m.

Donald Trump’s campaign chairman says the tarmac meeting between former President Bill Clinton and Attorney General Loretta Lynch probably helped Clinton’s wife, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton escape criminal charges.

Paul Manafort said on ABC Wednesday that the meeting, which took place during the FBI’s probe into Hillary Clinton’s private email server, “probably communicated information that was going to be helpful to her” as FBI Director James Comey considered whether to recommend an indictment for the former first lady.

Manafort said, “we feel that was not just a meeting to talk about golf and grandchildren,” as Clinton had claimed.

A few days after the tarmac meeting, Hillary Clinton was interviewed for more than three hours. Comey then decided not to bring charges against her, but he was starkly critical of her use of a private email server through which classified information had passed.

Manafort said delegates at the Republican National Convention were chanting, “Lock her up!” because they feel she should be prosecuted.

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3:11 a.m.

The art of the coronation has taken something of a beating at the Republican National Convention.

Nevertheless, Donald Trump now has the crown — and a final chance to summon unity from the party’s restive ranks in the ritual’s closing days.

The roll call of the states Tuesday night delivered Trump the nomination. Day 3 brings two conservative stalwarts to the stage — running mate Mike Pence and Trump’s most tenacious primary opponent, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. That’s the man Trump used to call “Lyin’ Ted.”

On the second night, speakers came forward to denounce Hillary Clinton, none to greater effect than New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

But discord remains and it remains to be seen if Trump can generate the unity and fighting spirit he’ll need in the fall.

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