Democrats marked Day 2 of their unconventional, nearly all-virtual Democratic National Convention with another all-star lineup that saw Joe Biden officially becoming the nominee.
Former President Bill Clinton, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Jill Biden, the former vice president's wife, were among the high-wattage speakers who took the virtual stage Tuesday, with the former second lady delivering the night's keynote speech.
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This live coverage has now ended. Continue reading DNC news from August 19, 2020.
Virtual roll call delights with digital tour of U.S.
The mostly sleepy procedural moment was turned into a heartwarming virtual tour of the United States of America.
Convention roll calls — when each state comes forward and announces how many delegates it is awarding to each candidate — are known for being lengthy and sometimes tedious during the in-person event, as each state likes to use its brief speaking time to talk itself up.
But this year's Democratic National Convention announced its delegate allocation with a video showing stunning views, personal stories and even a few cows as representatives of the state delegations took home viewers on a rapid tour of the country.
Click here for the full story.
Food, song, emotional moments, biting attacks: 10 highlights from night 2 of the DNC
Former presidents, ex-secretaries of state and a New York elevator operator provided some of the high points of Tuesday's night 2 of the Democratic National Convention — but it was Jill Biden who stole the show.
School reopening debate plays prominent role at DNC
Democrats made several nods to the national debate about reopening schools amidst the ongoing coronavirus pandemic during the second night of the party’s convention.
Trump has tried to make schools a central piece of the election, arguing that he wants to help children and parents by opening schools. He argues Democrats want to keep schools closed to damage his re-election.
During the roll call, which featured a montage of states, speakers from two states opted to mention the school debate.
In Colorado, a parent explained the decision to keep their students at home. In Arizona, a member of the teachers union said that school openings should be left to medical experts rather than politicians.
“As a union organizer I'll fight to make sure it's scientists, parents and educators that decide when it's safe to go back to school, not politicians,” she said.
Later in the night, when Jill Biden spoke from inside a high school classroom in Delaware where she once taught, she referred to the school debate.
"I hear it from so many of you, the frustration of parents juggling work while they support their children’s learning," she said.
'Make us whole': Jill Biden returns to former school to deliver personal appeal to elect husband
Speaking from a high school in Wilmington, Delaware, where she used to teach, Jill Biden said that her husband would provide the leadership necessary to get students and teachers back in class safely and that he would do for the nation what he did for their family — "make us whole."
In the final speech of the second night of the Democratic National Convention, Biden spoke of the pandemic's effect on school, family life and communities, saying she was "heartbroken by the magnitude of this loss, by the failure to protect our communities, by every precious and irreplaceable life gone."
She wove in her and Joe Biden's personal story, as they met not long after his first wife and daughter died in a car accident shortly after he was elected to the Senate. And in a particularly emotional moment, she also spoke about son Beau Biden's 2015 death from brain cancer.
"How do you make a broken family whole? The same way you make a nation whole," she said. "With love and understanding. And with small acts of kindness. With bravery, with unwavering faith. You show up for each other in big ways and small ones. Again and again."
She said that while life seems bleak at the moment, "if you listen closely, you can hear the sparks of change in the air." People across the country, just like her husband did following Beau's death, "are putting their shoulders back" and "fighting for each other."
"We haven't given up. We just need leadership worthy of our nation," she said. "That's Joe. He and Kamala will work as hard as you do every day to make this nation better. And if I have the honor of serving as your first lady, I will too. And with Joe as president, these classrooms will ring out with laughter and possibility once again."
Joe Biden later joined his wife on-screen, hugging her and telling viewers, "You can see why she's the love of my life, the rock of our family."
Lots of praise for Jill Biden on social media
Shortly before Jill Biden's speech, the Bidens were featured in a 5-minute video about their relationship, during which he said "she gave me back my life." The short film received quick praise on social media from people on both sides of the aisle.
Obama speaks Wednesday, but weighed in early
Ady Barkan, progressive activist battling ALS, has standout moment at DNC
In a standout moment at Tuesday’s DNC, activist Ady Barkan discussed his personal journey as a father and husband battling ALS, a terminal neurodegenerative disease, while fighting for health care for all.
His video montage was interspersed with footage from his life and activism, serving as a love letter to his son.
“By the time you’re watching this, you will have grown up to be strong and courageous. But I don’t know how much longer I’ll be around for you,” he said in the video.
His political journey began two years ago when Barkan confronted then-Sen. Jeff Flake, Republican of Arizona, about the need for health care reform after a tax cut by Trump put his access to care at risk. But, two years later, he addressed Tuesday night’s DNC from his wheelchair using a computerized voice in one of the most heartfelt moments of the convention to talk about health care access.
“We live in the richest country in history and yet we do not guarantee this most basic human right,” adding that Trump and other Republicans are “trying to take away millions of people’s health insurance.”
Although Barkan supported Sen. Elizabeth Warren in the primaries, he later backed Joe Biden and urged Americans to rally to “put on his desk a bill that guarantees us all the health care we deserve.”
Plenty of levity but moments of reflection and state challenges in roll call
It also provided an opportunity for states to touch on challenges and tragedies. Two states, Arizona and Colorado, touched on school reopenings. In El Paso, Texas, Rep. Veronica Escobar brought up gun control. Utah took time to make the case for mail-in voting.
The round-the-country roll call from America’s 57 states and territories beamed scenes from Hawaii’s azure shores, where a delegate spoke both of her home state’s native Hawaiian population and her background as a Filipina immigrant, to Wyoming’s wide plains, where the parents of Matthew Shepard praised Joe Biden’s push to pass LGBTQ hate crime legislation in 2009.
All in all, a whip around with a diversity of people, topics and tones — and a lot of face masks.
Kerry compares Trump's foreign policy to a 'blooper reel'
John Kerry delivered a scathing rebuke of Trump, accusing the president of putting his interests before the country and ridiculing his foreign policy record.
"Donald Trump pretends Russia didn’t attack our elections. And now, he does nothing about Russia putting a bounty on our troops. So he won’t defend our country. He doesn’t know how to defend our troops. The only person he’s interested in defending is himself," Kerry, the 2004 Democratic nominee, said.
"Our troops can’t get out of harm’s way by hiding in the White House bunker. They need a president who will stand up for them. And President Biden will," Kerry continued.
Kerry, who worked with Biden as secretary of state in the Obama administration, said that when Trump travels abroad "it’s a blooper reel."
"He breaks up with our allies and writes love letters to dictators," he said. "America deserves a president who is looked up to, not laughed at."
Biden speaks directly with voters during digital roundtable
Biden added a listening stop to his convention lineup, an opportunity to give policy debates a human face and showcase his empathy for people who struggle.
Traditionally, the nominee doesn’t make an appearance at the convention until the final night when they formally accept the nomination. But with an unconventional format, Democrats tested some new tricks.
Biden, seated in a convention hall ballroom in Delaware, hosted a virtual roundtable for the first two nights, talking to four television screens displaying "regular" Americans.
The format allowed him to talk policy by putting a human face on the problem. On Tuesday, each person described how the Affordable Care Act had allowed them to get life-saving health care.
It also allowed Biden to draw a contrast with Trump, utilizing his prime time convention space to listen instead of talking.
Whose party is this?
To many Democratic party observers, appealing to white college-educated voters is key to winning elections. But in reality, white college-educated voters made up about 28 percent of the party’s voters in 2019, according to a Pew Research Center analysis. And in 2016, a narrow majority voted for Trump. Together, all groups of white voters make up about 42 percent of the Democratic base, according to that Pew data. That’s a minority.
The slow way that that reality has seeped into the public and Democratic Party’s understanding of itself has remained a constant topic of debate in black and Latino political circles. And it prompted some to question the wisdom of giving Ocasio-Cortez 60 seconds to speak during the second night of the Democratic Convention. The New York politician, a Latina, is widely regarded as a rising star in the party with online fan clubs and social connections in states far from New York.
Traditionally, it is unusual to give a first-term representative a featured convention speaking slot. But, Ocasio-Cortez used her short one to second the nomination of Sanders, a Democratic socialist and the preferred candidate of many self-identified progressives inside the party.
Biden, the party’s presumptive nominee, prevailed during the primary season in large part because of his success with another major force within the party, black voters who described themselves as most concerned with pragmatic matters, such as electability, but often supportive of progressive policies.
An entirely unscientific ranking of the DNC roll call states
Maine: The quaint background just made us want to go stay at the closest bed & breakfast.
Hawaii: At the end of the day we really just want to be on the beach.
Delaware: Since it's Biden's home state, after all.
Rhode Island: Free calamari and a beach? We'll take it.
Montana: We just want to know how will the cows vote.
Live look at Kamala Harris during roll call
Here's why AOC nominated Bernie
Trump campaign criticizes Democrats for including Clinton in DNC
The Trump re-election campaign was quick to call out Democrats for giving Bill Clinton a lengthy speaking slot Tuesday, bringing up past allegations of sexual misconduct and alluding to Monica Lewinsky.
“It’s 2020 and Democrats are still honoring Bill Clinton. He’s the last person who should be giving lectures on what should or should not be happening in the Oval Office,” the campaign said in a statement.
“Democrats have moved on from #MeToo and fully embraced hypocrisy,” the campaign added.
The campaign did not, of course, address the many allegations of misconduct levied against the president.
Virtual roll call takes viewers on a trip around the country
Not every element of the Democratic National Convention has translated well to an all-virtual environment.
The roll call was not one of those elements.
Showing a video feed of delegates in each state and territory announcing their delegations added a bit of zest to the convention procedure, which usually takes place in a noisy sporting venue or convention center.
And for those of us stuck at home due to the pandemic, the roll call was also a reminder of all the places we want to travel when it's safe to do so again.
Schumer’s ambitious agenda faces one big obstacle: the filibuster
Schumer's speech laid out an ambitious agenda for next year if Democrats sweep the 2020 election and he takes over the upper chamber, but there's just one catch.
Speaking to the Democratic convention Tuesday, he laid out goals that include making “health care affordable for all,” tackling income inequality, combating climate change, protecting voting rights, fighting systemic racism, moves to “restore” the Supreme Court, rebuilding infrastructure, saving the Post Office, defeating COVID-19 and overhauling the immigration system.
“And out of this long national nightmare, America will finally awaken—to a brighter future, and a new day,” said Schumer.
It's a lofty agenda by any standard. But most of it could be thwarted by Republicans if the 60-vote threshold — which Schumer has not called for eliminating — remains.
Election forecasters place Democrats short of 60 seats even if they run the table and win each one of the most competitive races.
New York Times security guard from viral video nominates Biden for president
A New York Times security guard whose enthusiasm for Biden went viral formally nominated Biden as the Democratic pick for president.
"In the short time I spent with Joe Biden, I could tell he really saw me, that he actually cared, that my life meant something to him," she said. Jacquelyn Asbie escorted Biden into The New York Times' Manhattan office in January when he met with the editorial board ahead of their primary endorsement (which went to Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Elizabeth Warren).
"Joe Biden has room in his heart for more than just himself," Asbie said. "We’ve been through a lot, and we have tough days ahead. But nominating someone like that to be in the White House is a good place to start. That’s why I nominate my friend Joe Biden as the next president of the United States."
Asbie told The Washington Post earlier Tuesday that she's been inspired by Biden's life story and how he has handled the tragic deaths of his first wife and daughter in a 1972 car accident and his son Beau to brain cancer in 2015.
Selecting a young, Black security guard to be the first person to nominate Biden for president can be seen as a nod to the former VP's political persona as a champion for working-class America. Her presence also underscores how central Black women voters were to his success in the 2020 Democratic primary.
AOC nominates Sanders for president in brief remarks
Progressive star Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Tuesday nominated Bernie Sanders for president. Her appearance was a part of the procedure of the convention to give a nod to the person who came in second place in the delegate count, and she was asked to second Sanders' nomination.
She has previously endorsed Biden and she later congratulated Biden in an explanatory tweet.
“In a time when millions of people in the United States are looking for deep systemic solutions to our crises of mass evictions, unemployment, and lack of health care, and espíritu del pueblo and out of a love for all people, I hereby second the nomination of Senator Bernard Sanders of Vermont for president of the United States of America,” she said.
It’s not a surprise that Ocasio-Cortez, who has spoken explicitly about her morals driving her politics, nominated Sanders, whom she also endorsed during the primaries. The self-described democratic socialist, known for stinging her critics on social media, is one of the most outspoken, progressive and youngest members of Congress.
She spoke to those who are actively participating in social justice protests around the country and those who want a nationwide movement that fights for “social, economic, and human rights,” including health care for all, tuition-free higher education, a higher minimum wage and protecting unions. Ocasio-Cortez notably did not mention by name any of the signature policies that she and Sanders champion, including the Green New Deal or Medicare for All. She also does not mention Biden or Trump by name.
Sanders has backed Biden, and in a speech Tuesday night noted many of the policies both candidates agree on, such as raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, making it easier for workers to join unions and affordable child care.
UAW worker nominates Sanders for president
Bob King, the former president of the United Auto Workers union, nominated Bernie Sanders for president during the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday, as Sanders has delegates from the primary that allow for him to be nominated as a purely symbolic act.
"Bernie’s moral clarity has emboldened the Democratic Party’s fight for justice," King said in nominating Sanders. "The grassroots energy of his supporters has cemented important advances in our platform. Bernie will continue to lead a movement that helps defeat Trump and delivers transformational change."
Bill Clinton lambastes Trump's presidency as 'only chaos'
Bill Clinton eviscerated Trump in his speech before the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday, with the former president panning Trump's handling of the pandemic and saying his presidency is "only chaos."
"Donald Trump says we’re leading the world," Clinton said. "Well, we are the only major industrial economy to have its unemployment rate triple. At a time like this, the Oval Office should be a command center. Instead, it’s a storm center. There’s only chaos. Just one thing never changes — his determination to deny responsibility and shift the blame. The buck never stops there."
"If you want a president who defines the job as spending hours a day watching TV and zapping people on social media, he’s your man," Clinton added. "Denying, distracting, and demeaning works great if you’re trying to entertain and inflame. But in a real crisis, it collapses like a house of cards."
Clinton said Democrats are "united in offering you a very different choice: a go-to-work president."
"Joe won’t just put his signature on a check and try to fool you into thinking it came from him," Clinton said, referencing Trump having his signature placed on direct COVID-19 relief checks to Americans. "He’ll work to make sure that your paycheck reflects your contribution to, and your stake in, a growing economy."
"You know what Donald Trump will do with four more years: blame, bully, and belittle," Clinton added. "And you know what Joe Biden will do: build back better. It’s Trump’s 'Us vs. Them' America against Joe Biden’s America, where we all live and work together. It’s a clear choice. And the future of our country is riding on it."
Clinton has spoken at every Democratic convention for more than three decades, including giving the nominating speech for Barack Obama in 2012. But a number of progressives have expressed dismay with Clinton having a featured speaking slot post-#MeToo era.
Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter praise Bidens for work helping unpaid caregivers
Former President Jimmy Carter and first lady Rosalynn Carter praised Joe and Jill Biden Tuesday night, highlighting the work they have done together helping unpaid caregivers juggling a job and other responsibilities.
"Joe knows well, too well, the sorrows and struggles of being a family caregiver, from Joe’s time as a young widower thrust into single parenthood with a demanding job to he and Jill caring for their own parents and their son Beau at the end of their lives," Rosalynn Carter said. "He knows caregiving is hard even on the good days."
Speaking of his own presidential campaign, Jimmy Carter remembered Biden as "my first and most effective supporter in the Senate."
"Joe Biden must be our next president," Mr. Carter concluded.
Schumer slams Trump: 'America, Donald Trump has quit on you'
Schumer gave a scathing speech assailing Trump at Tuesday night's DNC, telling the American people "he has quit on you," citing the administration's policies and its COVID-19 response.
With the Statue of Liberty behind him, Schumer said Trump has "divided our country, diminished our greatness, and demeaned everything that this statue represents."
"Millions are jobless. 170,000 Americans have died from COVID. And Donald Trump says, 'It is what it is," Schumer said. Presidents should never say, 'It is what it is.' President Lincoln, honoring the great sacrifice at Gettysburg, didn’t say, 'It is what it is.' President Roosevelt, seeing a third of the nation ill-housed, ill-clad, and ill-nourished, didn’t say, 'It is what it is.'"
He added, "America, Donald Trump has quit on you. He has quit on you." He called Biden “a man with a steady hand and a big heart who will never—ever—quit on America.” Schumer also noted that the White House is not the only goal, but Democrats have to keep control of the House and win a majority of Senate seats.
“We will stay united, from (Bernie) Sanders and (Elizabeth) Warren, to (Joe) Manchin and (Mark) Warner—and with our unity, we will bring bold and dramatic change to our country,” he said.
Sally Yates eviscerates Trump: 'Trampled the rule of law'
Sally Yates, the former acting attorney general ousted by Trump, said the president is "bankrupting our nation's moral authority" in a fiery speech during the convention Tuesday.
Yates, who was fired 10 days into her stint as acting attorney general after she refused to defend Trump's travel ban, said that policy "was the start of his relentless attacks on our democratic institutions — and countless dedicated public servants."
Trump has "trampled the rule of law, trying to weaponize our Justice Department to attack his enemies and protect his friends," she said, adding. "His constant attacks — on the FBI, the free press, inspectors general, military officers, and federal judges — they all have one purpose: to remove any check on his abuse of power."
Yates' speech fit in with the theme of many over the course of the first two nights — searing criticism of the president, something that was delivered by speakers all over the political spectrum.
In closing, she explained why she's supporting Biden.
Trump "treats our country like it’s his family business — this time bankrupting our nation’s moral authority at home and abroad," Yates said. "But our country doesn’t belong to him. It belongs to all of us. Joe Biden embraces that."
Actress and activist Tracee Ellis Ross hosts second night of DNC
Actress, activist, and businesswoman Tracee Ellis Ross made her first appearance as emcee of Tuesday night's DNC.
Ross, 47, has been an outspoken activist for women’s rights and gender equality for most of her career and involved in Democratic politics. She has also hosted the annual TV special “Black Girls Rock,” which promotes self-esteem among Black girls, multiple times.
She starred in the sitcom 2000s UPN sitcom “Girlfriends,” for eight years and the ABC sitcom “black-ish,” for which she first African-American woman to be nominated for an Emmy for lead actress in a comedy in 30 years. (She is also the daughter of pop icon Diana Ross.)
17 young, diverse Democrats give keynote speech
The Democrats opened Tuesday night with a “different kind” of convention keynote address: a video montage of 17 different speakers representing a younger and more diverse generation of the party.
With a septuagenarian nominee, Democrats have worried that young people won’t feel the election is a vehicle for change and opt to just stay home in November. The keynote address is a coveted speaking slot that has a history of catapulting rising stars to national fame, as it did with Barack Obama in 2004. Tuesday marked the first time in memory that a single keynote speaker was not selected.
Instead, this year, the “speech” featured a dozen local elected officials each reading lines of the address. The cast of Democratic officials included men and women of different ethnic backgrounds and highlighted their variety of backgrounds and sexual orientations.
The speakers included national figures such as Stacey Abrams, Colin Allred, Brendan Boyle and Conor Lamb.
Local and state officials such as South Carolina state Sen. Marlon Kimpson, Michigan state Rep. Mari Manoogian and Pennsylvania state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, were also part of the montage.
The speakers touched on the struggles their communities around the country have faced during the coronavirus pandemic and criticized Trump for letting the virus get out of hand. They also touched on their own personal stories that inspired them to run for office, ranging from student loans to losing loved ones to gun violence to limited access to health care.
Abrams rounded out the video mashup, making a case for Biden and calling Trump a president of “cowardice.”
“This year's choice could not be more clear,” Abrams said. “We know Joe Biden. America, we need Joe Biden.
Night 2 of the DNC kicks off with a walk down memory lane
The second night of the DNC kicked off with a brief look back at some highlights from previous conventions, including this beloved quote from former Texas Gov. Ann Richards.
Biden, Harris talk 'modern family' and how they will work together in first joint interview
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris sat down with People for their first joint interview as the Democratic ticket, discussing their families and the moments that surrounded her being announced as his pick for vice president.
"That’s one of the things we have in common," Harris said, speaking of their families. "My children don’t call me stepmom, they call me 'Momala.' We’re a very modern family. Their mom is a close friend of mine. ... Joe and I have a similar feeling that really is how we approach leadership: family in every version that it comes."
Harris said the day after Biden chose her as his VP, she and her husband "hung out eating homemade chocolate chip cookies" at the Biden's home in Delaware. Biden then called Harris' stepchildren to welcome them to the ticket.
Harris said that she and Biden have an understanding that she will be the kind of vice president to say no and she will "be the last one in the room — and there to give him honest feedback."
The candidates participated in a socially distanced photoshoot with People and a full version of their conversation appears in this week's print edition.
Jill Biden to ask: ‘How can you make a broken family whole?’
Jill Biden will highlight Joe Biden’s deep experience with personal loss on Tuesday night, in an appeal to a nation ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic and mourning 170,000 dead.
“How can you make a broken family whole?” she will ask, according to a source close to the former second lady, while sharing her own experience marrying a widowed Joe Biden at 26.
In 1972, Biden’s first wife and young daughter were killed in a car crash that also injured his two young sons. He lost his eldest son, former Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden, to a brain tumor in 2015.
These losses were enormously public — Biden was sworn into the Senate in 1973 in a Delaware hospital at his son's bedside and was serving as vice president when Beau died — and voters have connected deeply with him because of it, often sharing their own losses with him.
Politicians, they're just like us...
Trump levels new attacks responding to Michelle Obama's criticism
"It was a divisive speech. Devoid of facts and it wasn't current. It was all old. It was done probably two, three weeks ago," Trump said in Yuma, Arizona, where he was receiving an update on construction of a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico.
Trump was responding to the series of criticisms he faced Monday on the first night of the Democratic convention. Former Vice President Joe Biden's campaign staged an event that largely focused on delivering a scathing rebuke of Trump and his first term in office, with a series of speakers making the case to the American public that the president is unfit to hold the office.
Trump continued his criticism of the former first lady during a campaign speech at the Yuma airport, telling supporters that Democrats "want to bring unity, and then you listen to Michelle Obama’s speech, which was obsolete by the time it got there."
Colin Powell latest Republican to be featured during Democratic convention
Former Secretary of State Colin Powell criticized Trump and offered support for Biden in a speech during the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday, the latest Republican to be featured as part of the Democratic program.
"The values I learned growing up in the South Bronx and serving in uniform, were the same values that Joe Biden's parents instilled in him in Scranton, Pennsylvania," Powell said. "I support Joe Biden for the presidency of the United States, because those values still define him."
"And we need to restore those values to the White House," he continued. "Our country needs a commander in chief who takes care of our troops in the same way he would his own family. But Joe Biden doesn't need teaching. It comes from the experience he shares with millions of military families, sending his beloved son off to war and praying to God, he would come home safe."
Powell's inclusion comes after a number of former Republican officials and GOP voters spoke Monday. Cindy McCain, the wife of the late Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., will also be featured in a video Tuesday in which she details her husband's "unlikely friendship" with Biden.
Powell was former President George W. Bush's secretary of State when the U.S. invaded Iraq. The former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said he planned to vote for Biden in June. Trump, meanwhile, retweeted a Twitter user Tuesday calling Powell a "neocon [weapons of mass destruction] hoaxer."
"Today, we are a country divided, and we have a president doing everything in his power to make it that way and keep us that way," Powell said. "What a difference it will make to have a president who unites us, who restores our strength and our soul. I still believe that in our hearts, we are the same America that brought my parents to our shores, an America that inspires freedom around the world. That’s the America Joe Biden will lead as our next president."
Biden campaign calls for a 'full airing' from DeJoy about USPS changes
The Biden campaign said Tuesday that the decision by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy to suspend his operational changes to the U.S. Postal Service until after the election “a positive step.”
DeJoy has been sharply criticized by Democrats and some Republicans for making changes to the Postal Service, which resulted in mail being slowed down and raised serious concerns about the integrity of the Nov. 3 election as election officials employ mail-in ballots because of the coronavirus.
Despite the assurance from DeJoy to halt the changes, Biden's campaign spokesperson Andrew Bates said "important questions remain" and called on him to be more transparent about the reasoning behind the changes when he testifies to the House next week.
"The President of the United States has explicitly declared that he is blocking coronavirus relief funding because he wants to impede Americans' right to vote by mail," Bates said in a statement.
"We must have a full airing of the background to these changes and the Postmaster General’s clear and unequivocal commitment that he will not take these or any actions like them that will undermine mail service for voters," the statement said. "Americans need to be reassured that the right to vote and the delivery of prescription medicines and other vital mail will not be impacted by partisan politics."
Cindy McCain to tell DNC viewers about 'unlikely friendship' between her husband and Biden
Cindy McCain, the wife of the late Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., is taking part in a video highlighting her husband's "unlikely friendship" with Biden that is set to air during the convention on Tuesday.
In a teaser of the video released Tuesday afternoon, Cindy McCain said, "It was like a comedy show sometimes to watch the two of them" joke around with each other.
"My husband and Vice President Biden enjoyed a 30+ year friendship dating back to before their years serving together in the Senate, so I was honored to accept the invitation from the Biden campaign to participate in a video celebrating their relationship," McCain tweeted.
McCain is the latest Republican to be featured at Biden's nominating convention, after former Govs. John Kasich and Christine Todd Whitman, former Rep. Susan Molinari and ex-California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman addressed the convention on Monday.
Donald Trump had an icy relationship with the longtime Arizona senator and Vietnam War hero and has on a number of occasions criticized him over voting against repealing the Affordable Care Act in 2017.
Meanwhile, Sen. Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican nominee, and former President George Bush, who carried the GOP banner in 2000 and 2004, will not be taking part in next week's Republican National Convention.
Bill Clinton speech to excoriate Trump: 'Chaos...storm center'
Bill Clinton will rip Trump's handling of the job he once held during his speech Tuesday night.
Paraphrasing Harry Truman's famous maxim that the buck stops with the presidency, Clinton will say Trump's only consistent goal during his almost four years in office is trying to blame others for his own mistakes.
"At a time like this, the Oval Office should be a command center. Instead, it's a storm center. There's only chaos," Clinton will say, according to an excerpt released by organizers. "Just one thing never changes — his determination to deny responsibility and shift the blame. The buck never stops there."
Biden calls 2020 convention 'a template for the future'
Ahead of night two of the virtual Democratic convention, Biden predicted that future conventions will look more like the one debuting this week than those made famous in past cycles.
Speaking with the Florida delegation to the convention, Biden on Tuesday called this week's lineup “the most creative, inclusive convention we’ve ever had."
"I doubt we’ll ever go back to the same exact conventions we had in the past. It’s a template for the future," he added.
Kamala Harris' husband to host first Biden campaign fundraiser with James Taylor
Nearly 29 million watched virtual DNC on Monday, but TV viewership down
The first night of the 2020 Democratic National Convention drew about 18.7 million Americans on television, a significant drop-off from four years ago, according to data released Tuesday by measurement firm Nielsen and reported by Associated Press.
The virtual convention, lacking the real-world buzz of typical events, kicked off Monday with Sen. Bernie Sanders and former first lady Michelle Obama as the headliners. It included a combination of taped and live events, all of it done remotely. Parts of the convention were carried on the major broadcast networks, and most of it was shown on cable news channels.
But the total audience fell below the 26 million people that watched the first night of the 2016 Democratic National Convention — a 28 percent decline.
That drop-off may have been eased by a growing digital audience that has embraced watching events over the internet. TJ Ducklo, national press secretary for Joe Biden's presidential campaign, tweeted Tuesday that the event drew a total of 28.9 million Americans, with 10.2 million internet streams of the event making up for the TV drop-off.
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Biden hits Trump on coronavirus during fundraiser with Tom Hanks
Biden held a grassroots fundraiser with actor Tom Hanks on Tuesday that around 10,000 people watched live. The event was part of a three-part series of grassroots fundraisers, which the campaign said has raised $750,000 from over 20,000 small donors in the first 24 hours.
In the segment, Biden went after Trump's response to the coronavirus pandemic, calling Trump's refusal to wear mask the "most irrational, illogical and egotistical exercise I’ve ever seen a president enter into."
"Donald Trump talks and talks and talks, but what do the American people have to show for it?" Biden said in his introductory remarks. He condemned the president for reportedly saying he doesn’t want to be distracted by the pandemic, and for his "wild TV performances every day from the White House.”"
He said that Trump’s inability to lead must serve as a "wake up call for all of us" and called on the thousands on the call "to respond with purpose and with action."
Biden leads Trump in recent TV and radio spending across 2020 battleground
WASHINGTON — Over the past week, former Vice President Joe Biden has had a significant edge in TV and radio advertising spending over President Trump in the presidential battleground, outpacing the incumbent in virtually every state that's key to winning the presidency.
From Aug. 11 through Aug. 17, the Biden campaign outspent the Trump campaign in Arizona, Florida, North Carolina and Wisconsin, according to NBC analysis of TV and radio advertising data provided by Advertising Analytics.
Biden is also outspending Trump in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Nevada, four states where the Trump campaign hasn't run any TV or radio ads in at least two weeks.
On the flip side, the Trump campaign is outspending Biden in Georgia and New Mexico, states where neither Biden nor his top affiliated outside groups have spent significant money on TV or radio ads.
'Disgruntled employee' mocks Trump’s claim he doesn't know him
Miles Taylor, the former Trump administration official who endorsed Biden, shot back at the president on Tuesday after Trump said he had no idea who he was.
Taylor is a former chief of staff at the Department of Homeland Security who said on Monday that Trump "wasn't interested" in cybersecurity and terrorism issues and sought to "exploit" Homeland Security.
Trump said in a tweet he had "never hear of" Taylor, who he called a "former DISGRUNTLED EMPLOYEE," who was being used by the "Fake News."
Taylor fired back on Twitter, posting a photo of the two posing together in the Oval Office.
“Alas, I’ll take the bait. Haven’t forgotten you though!” he wrote in a tweet that garnered tens of thousands of likes.
Conflicting expectations of Biden in DNC opener point to governing dilemma
MILWAUKEE — Moments after former Republican Gov. John Kasich of Ohio insisted that Joe Biden wouldn’t “turn sharp left,” democratic-socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders implored his supporters to vote for him as a figure who would advance the progressive revolution.
The first night of the all-remote Democratic convention captured the ambitious extent to which Biden has designed his candidacy around being an innocuous alternative to President Donald Trump with unity-based appeals to a wide swath of the American political spectrum. And it has caused leaders with conflicting policy visions to view Biden as their ally.
“I’m sure there are Republicans and independents who couldn’t imagine crossing over to support a Democrat. They fear Joe may turn sharp left and leave them behind. I don’t believe that because I know the measure of the man,” Kasich said.
About a half hour later, Sanders urged his supporters to vote for Biden as a candidate who will “begin that fight on day one” for a “more equitable, more compassionate and more inclusive” country.
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, who was on Biden's short list, praises Harris choice
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, a former contender for Biden’s running mate, on Tuesday praised Sen. Kamala Harris and said she is thrilled to see a Black woman on the ticket.
“It’s fantastic to see it happen, especially in 2020 when we have seen so many disappointments this year,” Bottoms said in a live interview with the Washington Post, adding she was “personally disappointed” she wasn’t chosen.
Bottoms said she trusts Harris to work with her and other mayors to understand what cities need.
The mayor also commented on why she chose to endorse Biden back in June 2019.
“My best polling source is my mother,” Bottoms said. “With every twist and turn and stumble in the primary system, she never left Biden.”
The mayor said her mother’s relationship with Biden during the primary was “sometimes rocky” but she “never wavered.”
“That gave me confidence” she said, “even in the early states.”
AFL-CIO president Trumka: 'We know Joe and Joe knows us.'
AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka sharply criticized Trump and explained his support for Biden in a live interview with the Washington Post on Tuesday afternoon.
Trumka, whose union is the largest federation in the U.S., said Trump got “caught flat-footed” and “wasn’t prepared for the pandemic,” at the expense of American workers.
“He treated us an expendable,” Trumka said of the president.“If he cared about the health and safety of the American worker, he wouldn’t have gutted OSHA,”
Of the Democrats’ 2020 platform, Trumka said he has never seen one that is more “worker friendly,” and Biden “is a blue collar guy who never forgot where he came from.”
“We know Joe and Joe knows us,” he said.
DNC 2020: Bill Clinton, AOC, Jill Biden and what to watch for on Night 2
WASHINGTON — The second night of the all-virtual Democratic National Convention will feature a new twist on the old convention classics as well as an address by Bill Clinton, who has delivered memorable speeches in years past.
Tuesday night's program will be less jam-packed than Monday's, and is to be capped by what is likely to be deeply personal remarks by Dr. Jill Biden, a life-long teacher and wife of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.
It will also include a virtual roll call of the states, a convention tradition in which representatives from all 57 states and territories offer brief tidbits of trivia and pride about their home states, and speeches from former Secretary of State John Kerry and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.
Trump bashes Michelle Obama's speech that said he was 'in over his head'
On the heels of former first lady Michelle Obama's convention speech, President Donald Trump spent Tuesday morning bashing her sharply critical remarks, in which she said that Trump was in over his head.
"Yeah, no, she was over her head, and frankly, she should've made the speech live, which she didn't do, she taped it — and it was not only taped, it was taped a long time ago, because she had the wrong deaths, she didn't even mention the vice presidential candidate in the speech," the president told reporters about the speech, which was recorded before Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., was announced as former Vice President Joe Biden's running mate.
"And, you know, she gets these fawning reviews," Trump added. "If you gave a real review it wouldn't be so fawning. I thought it was a very divisive speech, extremely divisive."
Trump also slammed the former first lady in a tweet on Tuesday, saying someone needs to explain to her that it was her husband's presidency that led to Trump winning the 2016 election.
Jill Biden to go back to her teaching roots for prime-time DNC speech
Whenever Joe Biden discusses his wife’s work, he’ll inevitably say that teaching “isn’t what she does, it’s who she is.” So as Jill Biden considered where to deliver her prime-time speech in this unorthodox Democratic National Convention, there was an obvious answer: the classroom.
The former second lady and potential future first lady will deliver Tuesday’s keynote address live from Brandywine High School in her hometown of Wilmington, a city where she taught English in the early 1990s. The choice is a signal of how the self-described reluctant political spouse has always forged her own professional path even as her husband’s career has taken him just shy of the White House.
A lifelong educator with two master’s degrees and a doctorate in education, Biden continued to teach at a community college in Northern Virginia while her husband served as vice president, a decision her staff initially thought was a nonstarter. She has said she hopes to continue teaching if they move to the White House next year.
“How great would that be?" she asked in an interview with NBC News from the campaign trail last fall. "What would that say about teachers? Wouldn't that lift up the profession and celebrate who they are? It would be my honor.”
Biden has often talked on the campaign trail about how teaching at community college has been particularly important to her, given that her students come from all walks of life. In an introductory video, the country will hear rare testimonial from one of her former students. “She gave 100% of her energy to the students,” the student, Yvette Lewis, says.
ANALYSIS: Trump in front, progressive policy in back at Biden's convention
If the first night of the Democratic National Convention was any indication, Joe Biden plans to stick to the safest route possible in the final months of his campaign to defeat President Donald Trump.
Biden's ideal coalition includes the Democratic base, swing voters and some longtime Republicans turned off by Trump's manner. When Biden and his surrogates talk about their disdain for Trump, that coalition unites; when they talk about a progressive policy platform, it is more likely to fracture.
Like Biden's broader campaign, the opening night largely amounted to an argument about the incumbent — that Trump has mishandled his job, and the response to the health and economic crises wrought by the coronavirus in particular, because of fundamental personal flaws that won't change if he is re-elected.
Perez defends decision to give Kasich, other Republicans a DNC role
MILWAUKEE — Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez offered a full-throated defense of his decision to give Republicans like former Ohio Gov. John Kasich a prominent role at the 2020 convention, brushing back criticism from progressives who say the former GOP presidential candidate doesn’t represent their party.
“I disagree with John Kasich on issues of real importance, whether it’s women’s reproductive health or the right to form a union. But Ted Kennedy taught me that progress was the search for Venn diagrams,” Perez told NBC News here late Monday after opening night. “The moment that you give up the search for common ground is the moment that governance gets really, really hard.”
Kasich wasn't the only Republican who spoke on Monday at the convention: He was joined by former New Jersey Gov. Christine Todd Whitman, former Rep. Susan Molinari, R-N.Y., and Quibi CEO Meg Whitman. In backing Joe Biden they described President Donald Trump as a mix of divisive, unstable and unable to deliver results.
The decision to give GOP luminaries a seat at the table is a source of tension between Perez, whose mission is to win the 2020 election, and progressive advocates whose goal is to advance their policy causes over the long haul by enhancing their clout within the party. Perez said those Republicans who spoke out against Trump were creating a “permission structure” for Americans who don’t typically vote Democrat to pull the lever for Biden.
Trump returns to campaign trail to counter Democratic convention
President Donald Trump hit the campaign trail Monday as part of his effort to offer a counter message to the Democratic National Convention this week.
As the Democrats kicked off their virtual convention Monday, Trump made three campaign stops in Wisconsin and Minnesota, two states that are pivotal to his re-election bid. He has strategically deployed news-making comments in the past to distract from his political opponents.
The president is scheduled to continue his counterprogramming events Tuesday in Arizona and Thursday in Scranton, Pennsylvania, Biden's hometown.