While the balloons are still being swept up in Cleveland following the GOP National Convention, Philadelphia gears up for the quadrennial Democratic conclave to choose a nominee. This week’s convention will be held at the Wells Fargo Center in the City of Brotherly Love.The Democrats will nominate former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to compete with the GOP’s Donald Trump. The prize? The title of 45th President of the United States and ostensible leader of the free world.
Apparently, every convention day needs a theme. That was true in Cleveland. It is true in Philly. Monday’s Day One carries the theme “United Together.”
Just as at the beginning of the GOP convention “United” may be more of a hope than a reality. The party faithful gather where the Philadelphia Flyers throw hip checks. That may be an appropriate venue as Bernie Sanders’ adherents will jockey with Secretary Clinton’s delegates over rules, speeches, and the future of the party.
The Republican Convention built to a climax, as the heavy hitters spoke later in the week. The Democrats come out swinging Day One. Monday evening, Sen. Sanders himself will take the stage. He and First Lady Michelle Obama will speak to close out the first day.
Other speakers of note include Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN). Mr. Ellison is the first Muslim ever elected to the House of Representatives. The Democratic Party’s link to labor will be exemplified by a number of labor leaders who will speak Monday.
But all eyes will be on Bernie. Recent revelations of Debbie Wasserman’s behind the scenes machinations of the party message while Chair of the DNC, have shaken the Democrats. Ms. Wasserman will be leaving her post at the close of the convention. That isn’t soon enough for many of Sen. Sanders’ supporters. What will the champion of all things progressive have to say? Will he continue to staunchly support Secretary Clinton? Or will he, in a fit of pique, damage the Party with a divisive message?
It should be fun. And it is only Day One…