This's weekend edition from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon.
Thanks for being with us today. Thursday night, the finale of the Republican National Convention staged on the South Lawn of the White House. A crowd of over 1000. A few mask visible and lots of fireworks. NPR senior editor and correspondent Ron Elving joins us, Ron Thanks so much for being with us. Good to be with you, Scott. I want to put this to you directly. Isn't it against the law to use federal government property in this case, the White House for a political event and for federal personnel to be part of the events in uniform? They are running roughshod over at least the spirit of the hatch Act. Yes, cot. But on the letter of the law, you get into the usual wrangles and tangles such as Well. The White House itself may be off limits, but not the Rose Garden or the South Lawn, and there have been people in the administration who had been cited for violating the Hatch Act, but they had not really been criminally prosecuted. That situation could change if there were more public outrage. But as White House chief of staff Mark Meadows told political this week, quote nobody outside of the Beltway really cares. It's irresistible to compare and contrast the convention's What did you notice this week? Now that both conventions or good Guerrero? First of all, both of these were strange. Many conventions scaled back from what we're used to. Both of them were largely about telling people what kind of a candidate Joe Biden nous. Of course, the Democrats wanted people to know Biden better and Republicans wanted to paint their own picture of him. In another sense, of course, at both conventions, the lead character, the central figure hovering over everything was still President Trump. But there was a great deal of interest this past week in talking about by calling him a closet radical, a Trojan horse who is hiding every wild eyed liberal in America inside. And Republicans would very much like to have Biden under a microscope right now, to make him the target, expose him as some kind of a villain because otherwise the election goes back to just being a referendum. On Trump, the incumbent and his first term and despite all his claims, to the contrary, that is not trumps best argument for re election. The speeches that even mentioned the pandemic during the convention often put it in the past tense a Ziff It's It's gone. Everything's fine, but of course, the number of infections In