The third day of the Republican National Convention is to soon open at New York's Madison Square Garden, with Dick Cheney expected to accept his party's nomination to be vice president for another four-year term.

Mr. Cheney is expected to defend President Bush's record and make the case for their reelection.

He is also expected to sharply criticize Mr. Bush's Democratic Party opponent, Senator John Kerry.

In excerpts of his prepared remarks released to the news media, Mr. Cheney draws a sharp contrast between the two presidential challengers, saying "the differences between Senator Kerry and President Bush are the sharpest, and the stakes for the country are the highest."

Mr. Cheney and the rest of Wednesday night's featured speakers appeal to the Republican Party's conservative base, unlike the more moderate Republicans who appeared at the convention podium earlier in the week.

They are expected to praise Mr. Bush's efforts in the war on terrorism and in Iraq and lay out the President's economic goals.

Among the speakers will be a Democrat, Senator Zell Miller of Georgia. He previewed his remarks on Fox News Sunday earlier this week. "In this dangerous time, we need a strong commander in chief, and I think George Bush is one of the strongest that you could possibly have," he said.

In excerpts from his Wednesday speech, Mr. Miller takes aim at leaders in his own party, saying they are "motivated more by partisan politics than by national security" and "see America as an occupier, not a liberator."

While the convention is under way, President Bush meets with New York City firefighters to thank them for their service. He delivers his acceptance speech to delegates Thursday night.