11:28pm The Democratic National Convention recesses.
11:18pm Bernie is enjoying his last prime-time appearance, except he’s been talking so long he’s flown out of prime-time, like Voyager 2 leaving the solar system. He finger-points and yells through his familiar litany of needs in healthcare, climate change, college debt, education needs, good jobs, immigration reform, job-killing trade deals, criminal justice, over-incarceration rates and breaking up major Wall Street institutions like the ones that over-paid her for speeches.
11:12pm Sanders: “Brothers and sisters, this election is about overturning Citizens United. Hillary Clinton will appoint justices who will overturn that decision….If you think this election is not important, that you can sit it out, think about the justices Donald Trump would appoint.”
11:04pm Sanders: “We have come a long way in seven-and-a-half years. And I thank President Obama and Vice President Biden. I thank them for pulling us out of that terrible recession. But I think we can all agree that much, much more needs to be done….
“Any objective observer will conclude that based on her ideas and leadership Hillary Clinton must become the next president of the United States.” Finally, the endorsement the Clinton camp was awaiting.
11:02pm Sanders comes out against wealth: “This election is about the grotesque level of income and wealth inequality in America today.” Standing O.
11:00pm Sanders: “Our revolution continues. Election days come and go but the struggle of the people to build a government that represents all the people and not just the one percent…that struggle continues….This election is about and must be about the needs of the American people and the kind of future we create for our children and our grandchildren.”
10:56pm Sanders: “Let me begin by thanking the hundreds of thousands of Americans who participated in our campaign. And the two and a half million Americans who helped fund our campaign with an unprecedented eight million individual campaign contributions. And the 13 million voters who voted for the Political Revolution, giving us the 1,846 pledged delegates here tonight.
“I look forward to your votes during the roll call tomorrow night.” So, he still wants them.
10:50pm Bernie gets his own fawning video introduction. Lots of Bernie placards stage-front. He’s enjoying the delegate adulation after all these years of obscurity. “Thank you” 20 times.
10:48pm Rep. Keith Ellison introduces Bernie Sanders. “He sparked a revolution, y’all. Let us raise our voices in gratitude to the man who’s made the Democratic Party greater than ever.” But wait. Bernie wasn’t a Democrat all these years.
10:44pm Warren: “We believe we must get big money out of politics and root out corruption. Hillary will fight for that and return government to the people.” Uh-huh. But what about the FBI investigation of Clinton’s pay-to-play with her foundation and the State Department job?
10:40pm The crowd is loving Warren’s sarcastic, mocking delivery: “Trump’s entire campaign is just one more late-night Trump infomercial.”
10:34pm Warren: “People get it. The system is rigged. It’s true….
“Now look, I’m not one who says Republicans are always wrong, and Democrats are always right. There’s enough blame to go around. But there’s a huge difference between fighting for a level playing field and the people fighting to keep the system rigged.”
Which raises the question: Who’s been running the White House these last 2,743 days of unequal pay, stagnant wages, the worst economic recovery in 60 years?
10:30pm Sen. Elizabeth Warren: “America faces a choice, the choice of a new president. On one side a man who inherited a fortune from his father and kept it going by cheating people and skipping out on debt. A man who has never sacrificed anything for anyone…On the other side is one of the smartest, toughest, most tenacious people on this planet. Who fights for women and children.”
10:18pm Obama: “Don’t ever let anybody tell you that America isn’t great, that we need to make it great again. America is the greatest country on Earth.”
10:08pm Michelle Obama gets a noisy welcome. Lots of banners with her name. She recalls how she tells her daughters the hate they hear does not represent real Americans. “In this election only one person truly qualified to be president of the United States and that is our friend Hillary Clinton. I trust Hillary to lead this country because I’ve seen her devotion to the children of our country.
“What I admire about Hillary is that she never buckled under pressure. She never quit on anything in her life….As commander in chief you need to be steady and well-informed, a president with a record of public service….
“I wake up every morning in a house built by slaves.”
9:58pm Cheryl Lankford testifies against Trump University, taking her military widows’ benefit in a scam. “He cheated working people with nothing to spare. What kind of man does that?” Chant erupts: “Lock him up! Lock him up!”
9:38pm Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey revisits the grandeur of the Founding Fathers’ work in Philadelphia. “Patriotism is love of country. But you can’t love your country without loving your countrymen and countrywomen. Now, we don’t always have to agree. But we must be there for each other…We are called to be a nation of love….
“We’ve watched Donald Trump paint with a broad, divisive brush.”
Bill Clinton is in the house, whispering to friends sitting around him.
9:32pm Eva Longoria is so happy — and proud — to be in Philadelphia. Chills. “I believe in the candidate who believes in all of us. She’s fought her whole life for all Americans. She is the most qualified presidential candidate ever.” Not counting a few.
9:22pm Sarah Silverman, Sanders supporter: “I happen to believe the crazy notion that people who weren’t born with the same opportunities as you and me should be given the same opportunities as you and me….Hillary is our Democratic nominee and I will proudly vote for her.” Chants erupt: “Bernie. Bernie.” The Hillary people chant back: “Hillary. Hillary.”
Sarah adds: “To the Bernie or bust people, stop it. You’re being ridiculous.” Dueling chants continue.
Producers signal Silverman and Franken to stall on-stage. Paul Simon wasn’t ready. He doesn’t look well.
He sings, “A Bridge Over Troubled Waters.” Get it? Unity.
9:08pm As predicted, Democrats are seeking political mileage through numerous video clips of Trump’s more outrageous statements, his mocking of a disabled reporter, comments on working women, etc.
8:56pm Sen. Al Franken: “Did you know the Trump University School of Ripping People off is ranked second in the nation, right behind Bernie Madoff University.” And more of this school of political comedy.
“I’ve known Hillary for nearly a quarter-century. I’ve never known anyone smarter, tough or more ready to lead us forward….We have a lot of hard work to do. Many of you have jobs. Many of you have kids. Ignore them. Get on those phones, knock on those doors.”
8:48pm Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, who sits in Clinton’s old New York Senate seat, feels the federal government must do more for working parents: “The vast majority of working parents are struggling with too little money, too little time and too little support. And Washington hasn’t caught up with their reality…
“Hillary Clinton’s life work has been defined by one question: How can we help those who need it the most?” Like herself? “Donald Trump has been defined by a very different question: How can I help myself the most?”
8:36m Sen. Bob Casey: “Donald Trump hasn’t made anything in his life, except a buck on the backs of working people. If he is the champion of working people, I am the starting center for the 76ers….Hillary believes we need an economy that works for everyone, not just Donald Trump and those at the top.” Like her?
8:20pm This seems to be the night for LGBTQ speakers. Jarron Collins: “How do you tell your kids not to be a bully if your president is one?”
8:16pm Rep. Luis Gutierrez of Chicago: “No matter what anyone says, it is simply a fantasy that we are going to round up 11 million people and deport them. It’s a sick, hateful fantasy. But let me tell you what gives me hope. In her heart Hillary Clinton’s dream for America is one where immigrants are allowed to come out of the shadows, get right with the law, pay their taxes and not feel fear their families are going to be ripped apart…
“We will take out the NRA when Hillary is president of the USA.”
7:56pm Sen. Jeff Merkley: “We owe an enormous debt to Bernie Sanders.” Thunderous ovation. “Bernie Sanders inspired us to reach for bold solutions with progressive answers. He’s galvanized a grassroots movement here tonight and long after November.”
7:50pm Demi Lovato says she’s fighting mental illness and Clinton will help others without the resources to fight it too. Then, she sings a song.
7:44pm Sen. Jeanne Shaheen: “More than 47,000 Americans died of drug overdoses in 2014. Hillary Clinton listens. She learns. She’ll deploy the necessary resources to fight this battle….How can Donald Trump lead America when he doesn’t even take the time to know America? We want an America that goes forward together. We need President Hillary Clinton.”
7:36pm Can someone please tell these speakers that they have microphones on the podium?
7:24pm Richard Trumka, president AFL-CIO: “Donald Trump is wrong, wrong, wrong for America. Listen, he thinks he’s a tough guy. Well, Donald, I worked in the mines with tough guys. I know tough guys. They’re friends of mine. And, Donald, you’re no tough guy. You’re a phony…Donald Trump isn’t the solution to America’s problems. He is the problem…Hillary Clinton is fighting to rewrite the economic rules for all of us…She’ll fight Wall Street.”
7:02pm Clinton campaign chair John Podesta: “To everyone who supported Bernie Sanders, this is your victory too… Donald Trump is too erratic, dangerous and divisive to be in the White House…Hillary will get results, to take on powerful interests in a rigged system to make our economy work for everyone. She’ll be a champion for our children and families…
“If we work overtime for the next 105 days we will make history and elect the first woman president of the United States.”
6:48pm Connecticut Gov. Daniel Malloy: “Democratic governors are improving the lives of America’s middle-class families.” That might be disputed by voters in 31 states who’ve elected Republican governors; and voters in 16 of those states also elected GOP members to control both houses of their state legislatures.
6:38pm Georgia state representative Stacey Abrams: “We will elect Hillary Clinton, a clear-eyed leader who races toward the future.”
6:34pm California state senator Kevin de Leon: “I have a message for Donald Trump. We don’t build walls in America. We tear them down. Thank you.”
6:24pm Oops. As the Democratic National Convention opens, Gallup releases a new poll. It reports Hillary Clinton’s unfavorable rating has climbed now to 57%. Her favorable rating is 38%, the lowest it has been in more than two decades. Two years ago it was 55% favorable.
A new CBS News poll also out today shows Clinton and Trump tied nationally at 42% among registered voters. So the real estate guy did get a pretty fair convention bounce.
6:20pm New York state senator Adriano Espaillat declares himself to have been an illegal immigrant. “Take that, Donald Trump.” Then, he repeats himself in Spanish.
6:14pm Rep. Nita Lowey: “We’re going to elect our first sister president…Hillary doesn’t just fight the tough battles. She wins them! She is respected around the world…Donald Trump has devoted his life and career to, well, Donald Trump. Hillary will always put our families first.””
6:08pm Rep. Brendan Boyle: “Donald Trump says the American Dream is dead. Why does Donald Trump want to lead America when he doesn’t even believe in America?”
6:04pm Rep. Robert Brady hails the nation’s veterans, MIA’s and casualties. And urges Americans to “keep Donald Trump out of the White House, someone who disrespects our veterans like John McCain.”
5:58pm Rep. Marcia Fudge calls for a voice vote on accepting the Platform Committee’s adoption recommendation. Shouting and cheering erupt. “All in favor say, ‘Aye.'” Loud cheers and shouts, prolonged. All opposed? Loud cheers and shouts, prolonged. No difference. “In the opinion of the chair, the Ayes have it. The platform is adopted.”
5:32pm “Our party is the party of unity,” Rep. Elijah Cummings tried to say over competing crowd chants. “Diversity is not our problem. Diversity is our promise.”
5:24pm There seem to be two conventions going on simultaneously in Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center. Any mention of Hillary Clinton draws cheers from her supporters, while any mention of Bernie Sanders draws an even louder ovation. By the way, Steny Hoyer endorses Clinton.
5:15pm Are you fired up?
Didn’t think so. That’s a challenge with a nominee who’s been around so long, dodges scandal consequences and has such poor poll numbers. What can she do this week? Perhaps humanize herself and decry the GOP nominee?
Not too many big names on tonight’s speaking schedule for the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. Mainly First Lady Michelle Obama and First Loser Bernie Sanders, who got a prime-time speaking slot on the least-watched night of the four in return for his half-hearted endorsement of Hillary Clinton.
Tonight Bernie is expected to make a fervent pitch for his left-wing agenda and then tell delegates to “Vote their conscience.” (We made up that last part to stir in a little drama.)
The formalities are out of the way. She forgot to use the gavel. But the convention was opened by Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake because Democratic National Committee chairperson Debbie Wasserman-Schultz was forced to resign over the DNC’s email scandal (are these things contagious among Democrats?). And she also stepped down from presiding over the convention.
Diane Russell, a Maine State Representative who loves Bernie Sanders, gets much of the Wells Fargo Center crowd on its feet by denouncing super-delegates and hailing the reform process underway. Any mention of Sanders’ name brings loud cheers especially if tied to “the political revolution” he has ignited.
Two-thirds of the super-delegates will disappear in the future, according to the reform plan. “We did this. We won this!”
The crowd chants: “BERNIE! BERNIE! BERNIE!”
She adds: “We won because we stood for real change against all odds.”