The 2020 Democratic National Convention was like no other. All virtual, the convention featured no crowds, little pizzazz, and plenty of negativity. The most talked about person was the – ahem – elephant not in the room: President Donald J. Trump.
Democrats rolled out their big guns, including President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, President Bill and Secretary Hillary Clinton, Dr. Jill Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Of course, the most important speakers were the nominees, Vice President Joe Biden and his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris.
Low Ratings for Convention
Despite the headliners, television ratings were abysmal and live streaming numbers were equally low. Whether the ratings indicate a lack of interest in the candidates or the less-than-engaging virtual platform is hard to say, but folks didn’t tune in. When the Republican National Convention kicks off next week, it will be interesting to compare: are conventions the latest victim of the coronoavirus or did the DNC miss a golden opportunity to rally voters?
DNC speakers focused largely on Trump, rather than drumming up support for Biden. Reading between the lines, the nominee’s best quality appears to be that he is, in fact, not Trump. After a lifetime in public office, that’s a pretty sad commentary on their best hope.
When speakers weren’t criticizing the President or touting Biden’s remarkable inability to be Trump, they reminded Americans of their extreme stances on a variety of issues. Promises were made about our future, most portraying a starkly different America.
And appearing the same day photos circulated of him getting a massage from a Jeffrey Epstein victim, Clinton – with no hint of irony – lectured Americans about the sanctity of the Oval Office.
What’s the Media Reporting?
AOC was granted one minute to speak and she used it to endorse Sen. Bernie Sanders for President. Interestingly, her plug didn’t garner much attention. Instead, the mainstream media gleefully reported on Republicans who’ve expressed their support for Biden, including DNC speaker Gov. John Kasich (whom most Republicans don’t like, anyway).
Even Obama yielded much of his time to Trump hatred, abandoning his wife’s one-time vow to go high. (To be fair, she did, too.) Harris again experienced amnesia about her previous criticisms of Biden and doubled down on her attacks on Trump.
Finally, Biden took the virtual stage for an acceptance speech. Reading from a teleprompter allowed the 77-year-old to stay focused and intense in the penultimate moment of his career. Polling in the coming days may show whether the speech helped Biden, but it’s still a long time until November 3, and post-convention momentum does not win elections.
Republicans will take their turn in the virtual spotlight beginning Monday. While there will certainly be some Biden talk, there will be great speakers to talk not just about Trump, but about American dreams, ideals and successes. Overall, we can expect a positive and celebratory atmosphere as Trump officially accepts the nod for a second term.
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