Kiri is a digital journalist for bayofplentytimes.co.nz.

Bay MP Todd Muller enjoys US republican ride

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Bay of Plenty MP Todd Muller has been thrust into the thick of one of America's most controversial elections which he has likened to a democratic carnival.

Mr Muller is in the United States as part of a New Zealand delegation of the International Democratic Union annual get together. This year, the event coincides with the Republican National Convention held in Cleveland, Ohio.

He is joined by fellow National Party MP Jami-Lee Ross.

Mr Muller said he had never experienced anything quite like the circus of the convention, which was about to enter its last night today. Already this week the Republic Party has made international headlines after its leaders and candidate hopefuls refused to endorsed the party's presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Mr Muller said there were thousands of protesters, Trump supporters, media and Secret Service at the convention centre where the rallies were being held.

''This is such an incredible event of people, American people. There's people selling food, people selling Trump T-shirts, media everywhere,'' he said.

''I've just walked past the BBC live broadcast just to my left. To my right there's another group of people in a separate protest against Trump, in front of me there's a line of Secret Service people.''

Mr Muller spoke to the Bay of Plenty Times while walking to the convention centre ahead of tonight's events, where Trump was expected to finally speak and a lead up of speakers during the week.

Mr Muller said he was privileged to be invited and hosted by the Republican Party and because he was an observer, did not hold a view on who he would prefer as a candidate.

''I have no view at all. We are here as observers, that's the important thing. I just look at this almost carnival of democracy in disbelief.

"It's absolutely extraordinary. I've never seen anything like this in New Zealand."

Mr Muller and Mr Ross will also attend the Democratic Party rally next week.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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