For the first time in history, a presidential convention was held virtually. If you were a delegate, then you would be disappointed by missing the excitement and the energy of the crowd. However, as a viewer, I liked this format better. There were fewer interruptions and the program moved faster.
The Democrats had a few goals. Two were to counter the repeated claim by the president and his supporters that Biden is out of it and merely a puppet of the radical left. The Democrats succeeded on both. Biden’s acceptance speech was the speech of his life. Also, the roster of speakers was geared more to moderates with the progressives on the fringes. The best example is that former Ohio Governor John Kasich, a Republican, was given more time to speak than Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. There was a fight between AOC and her supporters and Kasich about his being given more time. This fight did not hurt Biden because it showed that the moderates were in control.
Furthermore, AOC was given the role of seconding the nomination of the loser Senator Bernie Sanders. There were three other Republican former office holders who spoke in support of Biden. Even John McCain’s wife made a video about the friendship between Biden and John McCain.
Another issue that came up was seeing Linda Sarsour in a video with a group of Muslim women. The campaign could have just said that they did not pick the people in the group and left it at that. Instead, Biden’s spokesman came out with a comment, “Joe Biden has been a strong supporter of Israel and a vehement opponent of anti-Semitism his entire life, and he obviously condemns her views and opposes BDS, as does the Democratic platform.” This did not ingratiate him with the progressives. Biden understood that it is important to criticize views of people when you disagree with them, even though they now support you for president.
Another goal was to introduce Joe Biden’s wife, Dr. Jill Biden. I think she spoke better than Michelle Obama. They were also trying to counter the anticipated attack on Hunter Biden at the Republican convention. Mentioning the tragedies in the Biden family including Joe losing his first wife, daughter and son not only showed the resilience and empathy of Joe Biden but it makes Hunter a more sympathetic figure. Clearly, not only did Hunter suffer these losses, but even at this convention he was overshadowed by his deceased brother Beau, whose speeches at prior conventions were played.
I found the non-politicians more interesting. The haunting line of the convention came from Kristin Urquiza, whose 65-year-old father died from COVD-19 which he contracted as a result of going to a karaoke bar after listening to Trump’s advice (that it was okay to go to bars). Her father had no preexisting conditions and had voted for Trump. She said, “His only preexisting condition was trusting Donald Trump and for that he paid with his life.”
Another memorable moment involved a thirteen-year-old boy who, like VP Biden, has a stuttering problem. The boy met Biden at a town hall event. Biden then give him some pointers on how to deal with the stuttering. The boy read a message. He did stutter with some words, but he got through it. Not only did it make Biden look good that he took the time to try to help this boy, but hit home with parents of children with special needs. One of the regulars on MSNBC admitted for the first time that he had speech impediment growing up. Another pro-Trump commentator was moved since he has a child with learning disabilities.
The calling of the states was entertaining since each state wanted to have their own theme. My favorite was the representative of the Montana delegation standing in a field in front of a few cows. After Biden finished his speech to end the convention, he walked outside to a parking lot to fireworks and people sitting on their cars social distancing. It reminded me of being in the country for July 4 fireworks and the drive-in at Fair Oaks.
Although it happened before the convention, Kamala Harris was not the progressive’s choice for vice-president. Senator Harris has law enforcement experience having been a district attorney and attorney general. These are not qualities that progressives look for.
In contrast, during the convention, the news involving the president was not positive.
On August 17, Myles Taylor a lifelong Republican, and the chief of staff of the former head of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen, talked about his experiences dealing with the president and endorsed Biden.
On August 19, during a press conference Trump was asked about QAnon, to which he replied: “I don’t know much about the movement, other than I understand they like me very much. Which I appreciate.” Trump described QAnon adherents as “people who love our country.” When a reporter asked Trump if he could support a theory that says Trump “is secretly saving the world from this satanic cult of pedophiles and cannibals,” he responded, “Well, I haven’t heard that, but is that supposed to be a bad thing or a good thing?”
QAnon believes that there is a worldwide cabal of Satan-worshiping pedophiles who rule the world. They control politicians, the media and Hollywood and cover up their existence. They would have continued ruling the world, were it not for the election of President Donald Trump. We know about this because of a person in the government who uses the alias Q. An FBI “Intelligence Bulletin” memo from the Phoenix Field Office dated May 30, 2019 identified QAnon-driven extremists as a domestic terrorism threat.
In contrast to Biden, all that matters to Trump is that you support him. Thus, it is reasonable to conclude that he would have no problem accepting the support of those who marched at night in Charlottesville making anti-Semitic comments.
On August 20, Steve Bannon was arrested on a yacht owned by a Chinese fugitive and charged along with others in fraud involving the organization “We Build the Wall.” Bannon had been a Trump advisor in 2016 election and was in the Trump administration until August 2017. Just another example of the president proving that he was correct when he stated that “I’ll choose the best people for my administration.”
Trump claims that he knew nothing about the project other than “I did not like when I read about it.” Kolfage, the president of “We Build the Wall”, was also arrested. He said he discussed the border wall with officials at CBP (Customs and Border Protection) and DHS (Dept. of Homeland Security) and with White House senior adviser Jared Kushner. Donald Trump Jr. in 2019 touted the organization and its building the wall. Kolfage said that the president supported it.
On August 19, the president acknowledged that he is considering selling F-35 stealth fighters to UAE, despite Israel’s objections.
By the time this article is published, the Republican Party convention will near its end. If they do as well as the Democrats did at their convention, they will be happy.