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Former Santa Cruz Mayor at RNC

Chris Krohn updates us from the frontlines of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland

PHOTO: CHRIS KROHN

It’s funny to think that while most of us watch the Republican National Convention from across the country with morbid curiosity, one of Santa Cruz’s most famously leftist former mayors is in the thick of it.

Chris Krohn is wandering the streets of Cleveland this week covering the convention for the Berkeley Daily Planet. “It just brings a lot of people together that you only see from afar,” Krohn says over the phone from a noisy room. “You figure out what the questions are. Or the answers.”

Krohn, a UCSC internship director who will also write a column for brattononline.com, is at his sixth national convention, and plans to go to the democratic one in Philadelphia this month as well.

He talked to rapper Chuck D., who teamed up with former members of Rage Against the Machine and other artists to create a supergroup called Prophets of Rage. The band brought its “Make America Rage Again” tour to the Cleveland streets this week. He talked with Chris Matthews about President Barack Obama, marijuana legalization and the MSNBC news host’s recent interview with Bill Maher.

Krohn even talked to Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson about all the money the feds have put into the event. But Jackson, according to Krohn, doesn’t know how big of a bill the Rock ’n’ Roll Capital of the World will have to pay when all’s said and done. Law enforcement has poured in from 21 states, and California Highway Patrol is even helping out with the beat. Outside the Quicken Loans Arena, Krohn says there were about 2,000 protesters and 3,000 officers.

Most of Monday’s speeches focused on familiar tropes, Krohn explains, like small government and national security. “Every one could have been written 10 years ago,” he says. 

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