This is what it sounded like yesterday afternoon on the floor of the Wells Fargo Center here in Philadelphia when Democratic National Committee secretary Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said from the podium:
Senator Sanders has moved, in the spirit of unity, to suspend the rules, and nominate Hillary Clinton by acclamation as the presidential candidate of the Democratic Party. Is there a second? All in favor say aye. Opposed, no. The ayes have it!”
With that, Hillary Clinton became the first woman to be nominated for President of the United States by a major party. Whatever your politics, it was a historic moment and there was real excitement in the room.
Yet, not everyone was happy. It’s hard here to know actual numbers and it’s hard to judge to what degree they are significant, but there were those who are still upset with the way Hillary won the nomination. By the time Hillary was put over the top yesterday, the fallout from the leaked emails had faded, but it was still on the minds of some delegates. So much so, that these delegates got up and walked off the convention floor in protest.
We are silently protesting./They system is rigged. That’s why we’re walking out./We want a clean Democratic party. The party died today./When Bernie made his announcement to switch his delegates to Hillary, the anger erupted.”
How much actual anger, and what impact that anger will have on Democratic voter turnout, remains to be seen.
To cap the evening, Hillary’s husband, former President Bill Clinton, offered a 43 minute speech that consisted mostly of anecdotes and storytelling – all in support of Hillary. It was vintage Clinton.
She’s been around a long time. She sure has. And she’s sure been worth every single year she’s put into making people’s lives better.”
And so history has been made in back-to-back weeks. A week ago yesterday, the roll call at the Republican convention gave the nomination, for the first time ever, to a man who has neither ever held elective office or served as an officer in the military. All American presidents to date have done one or the other.
Yesterday afternoon, here at the Democratic convention, the roll call gave the nomination, for the first time ever, to a woman.
We all leave Philadelphia Friday morning to begin the 101-day march (trudge?) to the general election – an election that will make history no matter how it turns out.