The 2016 RNC (Republican National Convention) is facing unprecedented security issues. These threats come from all directions. There are the politically motivated protesters and rioters whose whole goal is to disrupt and shut down the GOP’s ability to chose a candidate. There are those who will take advantage of the situation and reduce protesting to the rioting and mayhem level. There is the ISIS related terrorist threats that must be considered any time there is a large gathering of American citizens. Finally, even internal security will be considered in the event of a brokered nomination.
GOP convention security gears up amid fears of threats:
GOP convention organizers to spend more than $50 million on security.
Former Charlotte-Mecklenburg police chief has spoken with Cleveland organizers.
Cleveland is purchasing riot suits and retractable batons for law enforcement.
Organizers for the Republican National Convention are preparing security for the gathering in Cleveland in July amid an unusually combustible environment, in which the threat of terrorist attacks is now joined by the unpredictable behavior of foes and supporters of GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump.
In the aftermath of Tuesday’s terrorist bombings in Brussels, officials representing law enforcement, the Republican National Committee and the city of Cleveland say they will be prepared for whatever comes their way when an estimated 50,000 people converge on the Lake Erie city for the July 18-21 convention.
“Our goal is to develop and implement, with numerous participating agencies, a seamless security plan that will create a safe and secure environment for our protectees, other dignitaries, event participants and the general public,” said Kevin Dye, a spokesman for the Secret Service.
Still, some security experts say recent events suggest challenges.
“I would be concerned in Cleveland,” said former Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Rodney Monroe, who oversaw security during the 2012 Democratic convention in the Queen City. “Cleveland has a lot of elements that would keep me up at night.”
But Monroe, who has spoken with Cleveland convention organizers, said potential nightmares could be alleviated with some well-coordinated planning.
An alphabet soup of agencies – from the Secret Service to the Department of Homeland Security to the military – have been working for months with state and local agencies in developing plans to deal with large numbers of protesters, potential domestic and international terrorist threats, and other concerns.