The Ohio delegation to the Republican National Convention received a visit from “Down Under” during its kickoff breakfast Monday.
Australian Ambassador to the United States Joe Hockey was among the speakers at the event, talking to delegates of the shared history of cooperation and shared values between the two nations.
“The relationship between Australia and the United States is deep, and it’s enduring,” he said. “Australia is the only country on earth to have fought with the United States in every major battle since July 4, 1918.”
Hockey touted the United States’ history of valuing freedom, democracy and free enterprise.
“That’s why people want to come here,” he said. “I want you to believe in yourselves as much as I and the rest of the world believe in you as well. Your democracy is vibrant, it’s strong and it’s a model because it does, at the end of the day, work.”
Allen County (Ohio) Republican Party Chairman Keith Cheney said that having the ambassador speak to the delegation was a pleasant surprise.
“His message to Americans was that we have a country with freedom,” he said. “I think that resonated with the crowd without exception: ‘We love America just like you love America, and we’re here to stand with you.’ That was great to hear from the ambassador.”