|August 17, 2020: The Democratic National Convention begins on Monday with speeches from Bernie Sanders, John Kasich, Michelle Obama, and others. The Trump campaign is launching a seven-figure digital ad campaign during the Democratic National Convention.
“If we look at the history of modern conventions, it’s tempting to dismiss the large, in-person gatherings of power players from all around the country as pageantry. But if you look closer, you’ll notice that conventions have played an important role for different wings of the party, who may disagree with party leadership and want to generate their own media attention.
Granted, this has become harder to do over the years, especially as conventions have become more TV-centric and prepackaged. And that will likely be particularly true this year given the pandemic. But that doesn’t mean conventions have lost all meaning. Even if nothing is actually decided at the conventions, they still shine a spotlight on the parties, illuminating emerging factions and up-and-coming politicians, setting the stage for — and creating — the future of each party. That’s why it’s unfortunate that this year’s format has to be virtual — and why one should hope that it won’t be the new normal.”
– Julia Azari, associate professor of political science at Marquette University
What We’re Reading
Flashback: August 17, 2016
Donald Trump received his first classified national security briefing.
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