GOP announces more convention speakers

WASHINGTON, July 20 (UPI) -- A former Miss America is among those added Tuesday by the Republican National Committee to the line up of speakers at its upcoming New York convention.

Erika Harold, who in 2003 was crowned Miss America, will speak to the delegates at the party's nominating convention in Madison Square Garden, as will House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., and Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, who made history in 2002 when he became the first black American to be elected statewide in The Free State.


Also added to the list are Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., and chairman of the 2004 Republican Platform Committee; U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole, R-N.C., the wife of the GOP's 1996 presidential nominee Robert Dole; and Sens. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., and Sam Brownback, R-Kan., who are both leaders of the party's social conservative wing.

An earlier list of speakers that included Ariz. Sen. John McCain, Calif. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg was criticized by some party activists for not being representative of the party's conservative base.


The 2004 Republican National Convention sits in New York City between Aug. 30 and Sept. 2.

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