The Democratic Convention: What You May Have Missed

Written by Leonora Cravotta

DNC 2016 – Day 1

It is Day One for DNC 2016 in Philadelphia at The Wells Fargo Center. The Democratic National Convention which will formally nominate Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine as the party’s President and Vice President candidates arrives in the “City of Brotherly Love” under the specter of some controversy.  Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the Democratic National Committee Chairperson announced on July 24 that she will be resigning at the end of the Convention in the wake of a WikiLeaks release of 20,000 emails which revealed that Democratic National Committee officials and staff members were showing favor to Hillary Clinton over her rival Senator Bernie Sanders (VT).

The Convention’s opening night is filled with a roster of diverse presentations. Tonight’s top speakers include Senator Bernie Sanders, First Lady Michelle Obama and Senator Elizabeth Warren (MA).

We will also hear speeches from Senator Cory Booker (NJ), who at one point was considered to be on Hillary Clinton’s short list for Vice President. Unions will be well represented with speeches from AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten and  SEIU President Mary Kay Henry.  Immigration will also have a prominent place in the agenda with speeches from Karla and Francisca Ortiz of Las Vegas. Karla is an American citizen but Francisca, her mother, is undocumented, and Astrid Silva, an undocumented immigrant who came to the U.S. as a child.

DNC 2016 – Day 2

DNC 2016 Day 2 (July 26, 2016)- It is Day Two for DNC 2016 at The Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. The Democratic National Convention 2016 began its first day under a cloud of controversy. Democratic National Committee Chairperson Debbie Wasserman Schultz who had resigned her position in the wake of the WikiLeaks release which revealed that Democratic National Committee officials and staffers were showing preference to Hillary Clinton’s candidacy for presidency over that of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, was not able to gavel in at the convention. That honor was given to Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, the secretary of the Democratic National Committee and the former Mayor of Baltimore. Ms. Rawlings-Blake achieved some notoriety following the Freddie Gray incident where she famously talked about giving rioters “space to destroy”. Ms. Rawlings-Blake actually forgot to raise the gavel and had to return to the podium following her opening speech.

The evening was intended to be Bernie Sanders’s night. Sanders found himself in a very difficult position throughout the day.  Every time he told the crowd about the importance of supporting Hillary Clinton for president, he was booed by his own supporters. During his convention speech, Sanders  had a signature moment when he told the audience “I understand that many people here in this convention hall and around the country are disappointed about the final results of the nominating process,” Sanders said. “I think it’s fair to say that no one is more disappointed than I am.” This moment drove home the point that Sanders ran an extremely competitive race and achieved primary results that blew the roof off of all expectations surrounding his candidacy. The speech also demonstrated both Sanders’s  emotional maturity and sense of humor.

The evening also included a speech from First Lady Michelle Obama  who is extremely popular among Democratic voters. She received a standing ovation when she said that she stood with Hillary Clinton. On the other hand, Mrs. Obama also told the audience “Don’t let anyone ever tell you that this country isn’t great,” Mrs. Obama said. “This, right now, is the greatest country on earth.” These remarks have a hollow ring when one recalls that during her 2008 convention speech for her husband’s first election, she told the American people “For the first time in my adult life,  I am really proud of my country.”

The evening also included a speech from Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, where she basically painted Hillary Clinton as a champion of the downtrodden and Donald Trump, as greedy person out for himself, a familiar theme which was reiterated throughout  the evening. Senator Cory Booker (NJ) delivered an engaging speech, My favorite line from his speech was his reference to an African saying, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”- Simple but compelling words.  Senator Booker is clearly a rising star in the Democratic Party.

Day Two of DNC 2016 promises to be very exciting.

Tonight’s headliner is former President Bill Clinton. .The evening also includes speeches from representatives of “The Mothers of the Movement”, an organization which came into being in connection with Black Lives Matter. The program also includes speeches from 9/11 survivor Lauren Manning and first responder Joe Sweeney.

DNC 2016-Day 3

DNC 2016 Day 3 (July 27, 2016)- It is Day Three for DNC 2016 at The Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. Last night, our nation made history when we nominated the first woman candidate for the office of President of the United States, former first lady,  former Senator from New York, and former Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton. This moment took place during roll call: After all the delegate votes had been counted except Vermont which had passed, Senator Bernie Sanders announced ” I move that Hillary Clinton be selected as the nominee of the Democratic Party.” Sanders’ call for all Democrats to get behind Clinton as the candidate was especially poignant given the many Bernie Sanders supporters who were protesting at the convention.

Former President Bill Clinton was the headliner last night. Many have commented that he appeared frail and was less of an orator than he had been in the past. However, his speech was still compelling, and it was interesting to hear the story of his first meeting with Hillary when they were law students at Yale, especially in light of everything that we now know about the Clintons and their many scandals. Clinton described his spouse’s ability to be put into any situation and be able to handle it. “This woman has never been satisfied with the status quo in anything.” She always wants to move the ball forward. That is just who she is.” he commented.

Hillary Clinton has always been ambitious and a hard worker.  The question is about the nature of the agenda that she is advancing.  Day 2 of the DNC focused on all the work that Hillary did to help children, women, the disabled, and other disenfranchised individuals.  A lot of emphasis was put on her years right out of law school when she worked as an advocate for children.  No one has ever said that Hillary has not helped people, but she has also lied, cheated, and violated laws. Her political misdeeds cannot be whitewashed with old photos of a young public interest law attorney.

The evening also included speeches from former Minority Leader from the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi who was joined on the dais by the Democratic women of the House of Representatives, former Attorney General Eric Holder, Actress Meryl Streep and Mothers for the Movement, a group connected to Black Lives Matter. The evening included a moment of levity when actress Elizabeth Banks appeared on the stage in silhouette to  the music of Queen’s  “We are the Champions”- a Saturday Night Live type spoof of Donald Trump’s entrance at the RNC in Cleveland last week.

Tonight’s agenda includes the headliner speech from President Barack Obama. The evening also includes speeches from Vice President Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton’s Vice President selection Senator Tim Kaine (VA).

DNC 2016-Day 4

DNC 2016 Day 4 (July 28, 2016)- It is Day Four for DNC 2016 at The Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. Last night’s program included the much anticipated speech from President Barack Obama and true to form, the 44th President did not disappoint the sea of supporters assembled. The speech was both  an endorsement for Hillary Clinton’s candidacy for the presidency and the first of perhaps many speeches in his farewell tour to his eight year presidency.

President Obama’s speech was both poignant and filled with some humorous moments.  He emphasized that as Secretary of State, Clinton has already been in the Oval Office. ” Hillary’s been in the room; she’s been part of those decisions.  She knows what’s at stake in the decisions our government makes for the working family, the senior citizen, the small business owner, the soldier, and the veteran.  Even in the middle of crisis, she listens to people, and keeps her cool, and treats everybody with respect.  And no matter how daunting the odds; no matter how much people try to knock her down, she never, ever quits. That’s the Hillary I know.” President Obama added, “That’s the Hillary I’ve come to admire.  And that’s why I can say with confidence there has never been a man or a woman more qualified than Hillary Clinton to serve as President of the United States of America.” President Obama  got a laugh from the crowd when he addressed former President Bill Clinton “Sorry Bill but it is true.” The President had another humorous moment when he discussed campaigning against Hillary Clinton in the  2008 Democratic Presidential Primary.   He described Hillary as doing everything that he was doing except that “like Ginger Rodgers, she was doing it backwards and in heels”.  The joke was funny but the analogy was a little off given Mrs. Clinton’s penchant for pantsuits.

President Obama also used the speech to discuss his own legacy as president and to thank the American people. “Time and again, you’ve picked me up.  I hope, sometimes, I picked you up, too.  Tonight, I ask you to do for Hillary Clinton what you did for me.  I ask you to carry her the same way you carried me.” The President further commented ” And now I’m ready to pass the baton and do my part as a private citizen.  This year, in this election, I’m asking you to join me – to reject cynicism, reject fear, to summon what’s best in us; to elect Hillary Clinton as the next President of the United States, and show the world we still believe in the promise of this great nation.”

President Obama did not shy away from taking digs at Republican Presidential Nominee Donald Trump. “America is already great.  America is already strong.  And I promise you, our strength, our greatness, does not depend on Donald Trump.” The President further added, “Ronald Reagan called America ‘a shining city on a hill.’ Donald Trump calls it ‘a divided crime scene’ that only he can fix.”  The anti-trump messaging was also front and center in the speech delivered by Vice President Joe Biden who said of the real estate magnate and former reality tv star,” His lack of empathy and compassion can be summed up in a phrase that I suspect he’s most proud of having made famous, ‘you’re fired’.”  The Vice President also described Trump as being the least prepared candidate in history to deal with national security and further went on to say, “We cannot elect a man who exploits our fears of ISIS and other terrorists. Who has no plan whatsoever to make us safer.”

Following President Obama’s speech he was joined on stage by Hillary Clinton and the two exchanged an embrace and a kiss. Many pundits thought that the optic of Clinton joining President Obama on the stage versus joining her running mate Tim Kaine was an unusual one. After all, the team is not Obama-Clinton or Clinton-Obama, it is Clinton-Kaine. For his part Kaine, the current Senator from Virginia who was previously the state’s governor, delivered a typical acceptance speech which had all the right content but little sizzle. But perhaps that’s why Hillary picked him. Similar to the Trump-Pence duo, the ticket has only room for one bigger than life personality.

Tonight is the final night of DNC 2016. The evening’s headliner is former first daughter Chelsea Clinton who takes the stage to introduce her mother, Hillary Rodham Clinton, the first woman nominated for the presidency of The United States.

[Read Related Article:  Hillary:  “Look at my Record…That’s What I’ll do as President]

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by

About the author

Leonora Cravotta

About Leonora Cravotta: Leonora Cravotta is the Program & Talent Director for Red State Talk Radio, the Co-Host for the Scott Adams Show, a political radio talk show, and a syndicated writer for conservative publications. Her professional background includes over fifteen years in corporate and nonprofit marketing. She holds a B.A. in English and French from Denison University, an M.A. in English from University of Kentucky and an M.B.A. from Fordham University. The Scott Adams show is available on, iTunes, Tune-In, Spreaker, Stitcher and Soundcloud.

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