July 27, 2016

The Convention Begins

Here's a post from Ryan Turner - a Bernie Sanders delegate from Spain - about some of the events he attended on Day One of the Convention. With a focus on the Black Caucus meetings and passage of the Democratic Party Platform - and a message from DNC Vice Chair Donna Brazile about the emails from the DNC that were recently revealed:

Day one of the Democratic National Convention kicked off with various caucus and committee meetings on a hot, muggy Monday in the city of Brotherly Love after a long night of welcome parties across the city where democrats celebrated their arrival to the convention. 
I had the particular pleasure of starting my day at the Black Caucus Committee meeting where I had the pleasure of seeing various African American visionaries speak and give their input on the impact of these elections as well as the issues that affect African Americans.
The morning opened with some remarks by star Senator Cory Booker who talked about the importance of diversity. Benjamin Jealous, CEO of the NAACP then spoke to us, followed by a powerful message from the legendary Reverend Jesse Jackson. The star of the meeting was without a doubt, DNC vice Chair Donna Brazile, who used her time to openly and frankly apologize to ALL party members for the horrendous actions and behavior of the Democratic Party and their involvement in promoting Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders despite being sworn to neutrality. Her video can be seen here:
Actor Danny Glover and pollster Cornell Belcher also gave incredibly interesting remarks. 
One of the highlights of the day was a controversial meeting at 12:30 that Bernie gave to his pledged delegates in an attempt to show his support for Hillary which backfired and resulted in many of his own delegates booing him. 
The gavel to the convention floor was dropped by Baltimore mayor, Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. Incredible speeches from Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren and Michelle Obama brought the crowd to cheers and tears, but the most polemic and energized moment was when Bernie Sanders took the stage to address the entire convention and show support for Hillary and was received with a mixed bag of boos, applause and cheers. Between the boos of the staunch Bernie-or-Bust supporters who wanted a vote to include strong language against the TPP In the party's platform, and the cheers from more moderate Bernie supporters who were happy with the platform, it became unclear how the crowd would react upon Bernie's' finale. 
Day 1 was a hard yet important step in moving towards unifying a very fractured party. After aome much needed rest, we all hope that day two will be more positive than day 1. Democrats Abroad's delegation has set and extremely good example of how both hillary and Bernie delegates to unite and fight for the same cause. We will continue forward. 
Ryan Turner 

Delegate at Large for Bernie Sanders