CLEVELAND — Sen. Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia, a prime time speaker at the Republican National Convention, brings political experience that stretches back to her childhood. Her late father, Arch, served as West Virginia's governor.
Her topic is the economy, and the Republican promise to protect "flyover" country like her coal mining state from Democratic policies she believes cost jobs. This will be far different from her first GOP convention speech, as a House candidate in 2000. That one lasted 45 seconds.
Tuesday night, she has 17 minutes to make her case to an audience of tens of millions. The Trump campaign vetted her speech, the senator says, but the only changes requested were cuts to prevent it from going too long. Capito sat down over meatballs and salad with me to discuss her speech and the 2016 campaign. What follows is a condensed, edited transcript of our conversation.
HARWOOD: The governor of Ohio is not attending the convention.
CAPITO: Quite frankly, I think this is a great day for Ohio that we're here, and I would have preferred obviously, as the governor of the state, to sort of suck it up and come on in and welcome so many people into his beautiful state. I didn't run for president against Donald Trump, either, so I don't have those tender feelings.