CLEVELAND, Ohio – Investor Tom Barrack departed from his prepared text on Thursday evening to tell the Republican National Convention about the personal side of Donald Trump’s life, focusing on his love for ordinary people and America.
Unlike the other speakers, Barrack left the podium and the teleprompter, and walked about the giant stage in the Quicken Loans Arena with a microphone, like a motivational speaker, or a coach.
At one point, he lowered his voice, and said:
Look. We’re at a tipping point. The world is in a mess. This necklace of globalism that we have talked about has crumbled and shattered into a thousand shards. It needs a jeweler to take each of those jewels one by one, starting with America and its own diamond, and polish it. Then slowly, find the seamless strength to put them all back together, so what we look at is the necklace of prosperity and tolerance around the world.
Barrack recalled his own roots as the son of a Lebanese grocer in Culver City, and his 40-year friendship with Trump. He recalled some high moments — such as the Tyson/Holmes heavyweight fight in 1988, when Trump stopped to talk to a doorman with a critically ill son, and sent the boy a note on the back of the program: “I came here tonight to see two champions: Mike Tyson and your dad.”
And Barrack recalled some low moments, when they bonded at the funeral for Trump’s father Fred, and Trump talked about wanting to leave the family name his parents had built better than he found it. “He’s done it,” Barrack said.
Earlier this year, Barrack held one of Trump’s first — and only — fundraisers, welcoming the campaign to his Santa Monica home despite the threat of protests in the radical left-wing town, which put a massive police presence on the street.
On Thursday night, he gave the Trump campaign the simple testimony of a self-made man, and a friend.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, will be published by Regnery on July 25 and is available for pre-order through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.