Chicago DNC will have a prime time roll call even with Biden already nominated

WASHINGTON — The Democratic National Convention in Chicago this August will have a prime-time roll call after all, the Sun-Times has learned, even though President Joe Biden will already have been officially nominated weeks before.

A spokesperson for the Democratic National Committee confirmed that the 2024 roll call will revive elements of the virtual 2020 “Roll Call Across America,” with final format decisions over the virtual and live components still to be made.

The 2024 planners are aiming to recreate one of the biggest hits from the 2020 convention, which was virtual because of the then-raging COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2020, the COVID lemon turned into lemonade with the “Roll Call Across America,” a slick video package starring delegates in their home states and territories casting votes, often from meaningful places — and telling why it was important for Biden to be elected.

The roll call was visually interesting, tight, original and deemed effective in driving pro-Biden messaging.

Conventions are basically four-night television shows. The 2020 virtual roll call turned out to be much better for the audience at home watching the show over what had been the standard, often chaotic roll call from the convention floor, which got somewhat repetitive by the time states starting with the letter “C” got their turn. The virtual roll call also eliminated the potential for unwanted surprises.

Nevada delegates participate in the virtual 2020 DNC roll call.

Screen grab from NowThis video

Democratic convention producers were on a path to reviving the best parts of the 2020 virtual hit for the 2024 roll call at the Chicago convention, running Aug. 19-22, even before Ohio Republicans seemingly scrambled things.

Ohio law requires candidates to be certified by Aug. 7 in order to be on the ballot.

Last month, Ohio GOP Gov. Mike DeWine called a special state legislative session to change the date; Republican Ohio lawmakers would not agree to a fix unless there were deal-killer strings attached.

That’s why Democrats have to formally nominate Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris by Aug. 7.

Republicans meet in Milwaukee July 15-18 to nominate former President Donald Trump for the third time, so the Ohio deadline is not an issue.

Michigan delegates participate in the virtual 2020 DNC roll call.

Screen grab from NowThis video

On Thursday, members of the Democratic National Committee approved moving up the Biden-Harris nomination and to allow for an “electronic” roll call. The vote was 360 for, two against and five abstaining.

The date for nominating Biden and Harris has not been set, but it will be before Ohio’s Aug. 7 deadline.

That Biden and Harris will have already been nominated for a second term by the time they arrive at the Chicago convention is being shrugged off by the planners.

The 2024 planners have a high bar to clear. In 2020, the Nevada votes were announced by uniformed union workers in front of the iconic Las Vegas sign; cars were the backdrop for the Michigan votes and the Rhode Island Democratic Party chair plugged calamari.

The Illinois votes were cast by former Illinois Sen. Carol Moseley Braun, standing in front of the Old State Capitol in Springfield — where ex-President Barack Obama announced his presidential bid, returning to the same place to name Biden as his running mate.

Former Illinois Sen. Carol Moseley Braun, pictured during Illinois’ 2020 Democratic National Convention virtual roll call.

Screen grab from NowThis video

Moseley Braun cast 59 votes for Sen. Bernie Sanders and 122 votes for Biden. In her one minute, the first female Black senator addressed housing discrimination “that has denied too many Black Americans the chance to own a home,” and what Biden was going to do about it.

Democratic platform drafting starting

The Platform Committee — some 200 Democrats from 57 states and territories — will hold a virtual hearing on July 9.

A likely issue brewing is over a plank addressing the ongoing Israel-Hamas war and how it is worded.

Pro-Palestine protesters are expected at the convention, and the issue is one that is dividing Democrats. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will be addressing Congress on July 24, in between the two conventions.

 A 15-member drafting subcommittee will meet July 11 to deliver a first draft of the platform.

DNC Chair Jaime Harrison said in a statement, “We’ll build a platform that is rooted in the collective experience of Americans and mobilize people to vote for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris in November.”

Convention chair Minyon Moore, who also chairs the DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee, said in a statement, “We look forward to drawing upon our party’s rich diversity and hearing from Americans from all walks of life as we chart the course for the next four years.”

(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *