From one convention to the next. We witnessed an incredible display of bitter party infighting, rancorous populism and striking showmanship last week in Cleveland. Today, all eyes turn to the birthplace of our nation for the Democratic National Convention.
The Democratic party has been shaken even before the convention begins at 4 p.m. in Philadelphia today.
We found out on Friday that the Democratic National Committee was actively pushing for Hillary Clinton during the primary cycle, a clear indictment of the party leaders as they consistently assured the press the DNC was a neutral actor in the primaries.
Wikileaks released 19,252 DNC emails between top party officials which showed clear favoritism from the committee. In the wake of the revelations, DNC chair and U.S. Representative from Florida Debbie Wasserman-Schultz announced she would step down as chairwoman at the end of the convention.
The Sanders camp had made points about partiality during the primaries. With those worries now vindicated, the Democratic party has been reaching out to the Sanders camp and his supporters, offering a number of concessions hoping to keep the peace.
Representative Schultz’s ouster is the start, she will no longer speak at the convention, and the rules committee has apparently agreed to set up a task force to minimize the influence of superdelegates, according to CNN senior Washington correspondent Joe Johns.
The Democratic party is likely to focus heavily on unity and party cohesion throughout the convention.
We heard a call for harmony from the Sanders team’s campaign manager on the eve of the DNC, “What the signal was today was that Bernie Sanders supporters have been heard. It gives us an opportunity to move forward toward November, united to deal with the problem of Donald Trump.”
We also now have the full Democratic ticket with the addition of Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine in the vice president slot. While big news, the headlines were quickly stolen by the Wikileaks email scandal.
According to CBS, Trump got a two point bump (42 Trump, 41 Clinton) in swing state polling, whereas despite the continuous Clinton bashing, her numbers remained flat from a week ago.
We can expect an outline of Trump’s proposed policies — and how they are anathema to American democracy. Beyond being anti-Trump, however, we will surely witness rousing speeches starting with Sen. Bernie Sanders and Michelle Obama, who both address the convention this evening.