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CTX Delegates notice heightened security at RNC

CTX delegates at Republican National Convention CTX delegates at Republican National Convention
CENTRAL TEXAS (KXXV) -

The heightened security at the Republican National Convention has not gone unnoticed by delegates from our area.

According to Toby Marie Walker, a Texas alternate delegate at large from China Spring, said it was noticeable even when her group arrived to Cleveland on Saturday night.

"Normally that's a 20-30 minute ride, it's only 13 miles. But it took us an hour and a half with all of the security and the checkpoints and everything to get to our hotel. It was a little interesting because they closed streets and later on those streets may be open but a different is closed,” Walker said.

She added it was difficult navigating the streets when going in a vehicle.

In terms of security when going to the convention, she said buses are checked before they go to the convention center. At the location, they go through Secret Service security and security similar to the one at airports.

Walker has noticed a heavy police presence throughout the convention.

"There is Capitol Hill Police all the way down to local. They're everywhere and so it's a little different than being in Waco. There is a police officer every five feet. You see them everywhere,” Walker said.

District 17 Alternate Delegate from Lorena Christine Turpin said on their way to an RNC welcome party on Sunday night, they ended up on the route for a parade, where people had a permit to protest.

"It wasn't a very large group of protestors but there was a huge police presence. It looked like there were 10 law enforcement police officers per protester that was there,” Turpin said. “It went smoothly, there were no problems. No issues. They were doing their first amendment rights and they were marching down the street as they are welcome to do,” Turpin said.

On Monday, Turpin reported seeing people protesting against GOP presumptive nominee Donald Trump.

According to CNN, 3,000 police officers were tasked with guarding the RNC. In addition, 4,000 federal personnel, including 3,000 agents from Secret Service, Transportation Security Administration were expected to be present. Agents from Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Federal Bureau of Investigation, FEMA and elsewhere planned to be there.

Republican National Convention kicked off on Monday in Cleveland, Ohio with approximately 2,470 delegates and 2,302 alternate delegates from all 50 states.

The Texas Republican Party of Texas listed 108 delegates, alternates and 47 delegates and alternates at large from Texas.  

Three of the delegates and alternates from District 17 are from McLennan County, two are from Travis County, one is from Brazos County and one is from Freestone County, according to a post on U.S. Rep. Bill Flores' Facebook page.

This is the first time both Walker and Turpin have been at a national convention.

Walker who supported Sen. Ted Cruz in the primary said her vote had been assigned to Trump, as a delegate at large.

Turpin who is proud to represent Central Texas even as an alternate was paired with a delegate throughout the convention. She anticipates being on the floor throughout the convention but doesn’t anticipate voting.

Turpin said the party is not yet unified for the presumptive nominee.  

“Is there complete unity? Absolutely not. Was that expected? Absolutely not. [The delegates] are trying to have voices hear. I don’t know what the percentage is. We’ll find that out on Thursday when the actual vote is for the nominee,” Turpin said.

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