The 2020 four-day Democratic National Convention (DNC) begins on Monday, August 17, during which the Democratic Party of the United States will formally elect its candidates for the positions of President and Vice President of the United States during the presidential election of 3rd November.
- The coronavirus pandemic and especially the high rates of infections in the United States forced the Democratic Party to postpone the convention for a month until August.
- The outbreak also forced the convention to be largely online, rather than being physically hosted in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, as originally planned.
- Which means DNC stars alleged candidate Joseph R Biden Jr, the 47th Vice President of the United States, and his running mate Sen. Kamala Devi Harris of California will not be in Milwaukee, but will be heading to the Wilmington, Delaware online convention.
What is the meaning of the DNC?
- These pre-election party conventions are a platform for presidential candidates to speak directly and connect with voters. They involve great pomp and theater, and these are great media events; Therefore, concerns have been raised about the effectiveness of a virtual convention and whether it can generate the same interest and enthusiasm among supporters, voters and the media.
- When these conventions are traditionally held in the physical presence of people, they provide photo opportunities and networking not only for local politicians and public figures, but also for voters, for whom it becomes a major draw.
- A virtual convention would mean that many participants could not participate in this way. However, apart from the lack of this opportunity to physically participate and network, important convention activities will continue as normal, including by video link.
- There will be speeches from a list of Democratic leaders, the party's official political platform will be adopted, and a vote will take place which will officially make Biden the official candidate.
What is the timetable for the convention?
- The congress will meet from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. ET, Monday, August 17 to Thursday, August 20, or 6:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. August 18 to 21 in India.
- Day one lineup includes Andrew Cuomo, Governor of New York; Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, who applied for the 2020 Democratic nomination alongside Biden and Harris before relinquishing and endorsing Biden in early March this year; former First Lady Michelle Obama, who gave the memorable “When They Go Down, We Go Up” speech at the 2016 DNC; and Vermont Independent Senator Bernie Sanders, who finished second behind Biden and Hillary Clinton in the Democratic nomination contest in 2020 and 2016 respectively.
- On August 18, Jill Biden, the wife of the alleged candidate, will speak, alongside former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State John Kerry.
- A pre-recorded speech by New York Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez will be played. The list of speakers for August 19 includes former Secretary of State and 2016 Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton; and former President Barack Obama.
- Kamala Harris herself will also speak; Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, who was briefly seen as a top contender for the Democratic nomination early in the primaries; and Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives.
- On August 20, the last day of the convention, several other candidates who dropped out of the 2020 presidential race; former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey, former mayor of South Bend, Indiana Pete Buttigieg and businessman Andrew Yang – will speak.
- Joe Biden will also speak on the final day, formally accepting the nomination and officially becoming the party's presidential candidate.
Can you see the procedures in the DNC?
The proceedings will be broadcast live on the Democratic National Convention website (https://www.demconvention.com/watch-the-convention/), as well as through major US news outlets, including the New York Times, which also announced a “live chat analysis” of its reporters and “real-time speech highlights”. The Convention will also be on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. All major US cable TV networks will broadcast the convention live, and you can watch the proceedings on any network available in India.
What else will happen other than the speeches?
There are always performances by American artistes; only this time, they will be virtual. On August 17, singer-songwriter Maggie Rogers and soul-singer, songwriter and record producer Leon Bridges, will perform. On August 18, there won't be any performances by artistes, but the schedule features ‘Roll Across America', in which ordinary citizens across the United States will speak about the presidential elections and their support for Joe Biden as a presidential candidate. On August 19, singer-songwriter Billie Eilish will perform. On the last day, the all-female country pop band, The Chicks (previously the Dixie Chicks) will perform.