Democrats to hold virtual convention; Republicans will not: cruelty is too obvious

In the same week that Donald Trump returned to the campaign trail, holding two indoor rallies for thousands of supporters in states with rapidly increasing rates of positive testing and hospitalizations for COVID-19, Democrats effectively canceled their plans for a nomination convention. presidential. Or rather, they have long marked him: Officially, the 2020 Democratic National Convention will still be held in Milwaukee, and Joe Biden still plans to attend in person to accept his nomination and deliver the traditional speech. But you will not be speaking to thousands of delegates, alternates, and members of the media who have traveled there from across the country.

Of course, it would be sensible for Republicans to do the same. After all, Donald Trump will be nominated by acclamation, and Biden’s previous opponents accepted him long ago. There is practically no reason to hold standard political conventions in the midst of a raging pandemic. Health experts believe there is an increased risk of contracting the virus in confined spaces such as those used for convention events. By abandoning plans to welcome more than 50,000 people from across the country, including one state and numerous U.S. territories that are literally abroad, Democrats have made an obviously obvious choice, and a cry in terms from a political perspective and consequences in the real world.

But because President Trump’s ego is too fragile to pass up the opportunity to celebrate an inevitable conclusion, the Republican National Convention and the Trump campaign will spend the next few weeks trying to figure out how to make a house full of singing and bellowing. Put on Trump supporters put on masks: the masks his leader insists are only worn by the weak, like the people in China who slander racist attacks almost daily. Essentially self-exiled from North Carolina after Democratic Governor Roy Cooper and other officials dared to foreground their concerns about the possible viral spread, Trump moved his adventure (or at least most of it) to Jacksonville, Florida, where , according a new surveyAlmost 60% of residents do not want it. In another survey, 57% They said they feared the Republican convention would spark a new outbreak.

This is not like moving the party to Guyana, but the Jonestown echoes are unmistakable: a narcissistic madman Leader his cult of death in a state with one of the fastest growing rates of coronavirus worldwide. This will probably be remembered as one of the most callous political movements in modern presidential history. Florida reported nearly 9,000 new cases on Friday, the third new single-day record this week, and nearly 20,000 in the past three days. And it’s not because of increased testing, that Trump bugaboo: The testing rate in Florida has held steady for the past two weeks.

At this point, Biden just needs to stay on the sidelines and let Trump destroy himself and the Republican Party. Sure, that’s almost an unacceptably low bar. But illustrating how a responsible party manages its affairs can go a long way in undoing Republican attacks and allowing Democrats the opportunity to co-opt the Republican Party’s self-proclaimed personal responsibility party title.

Trump will continue to resist calls to cut the convention, of course. As with everything he’s scared of, he seems scared or seems to give in to so-called street vendors in panic. Meanwhile, RNC and Trump campaign staff will be embroiled in a logistical nightmare, trying to keep thousands of people safe and healthy during an indoor convention. In Florida. In late August.

Other than the predictable blows to snuggling up in his basement, Biden faces very few downsides from the party’s decision to cut down on this year’s convention. Data from surveys on reopening and wearing masks show that most Americans are truly aligned with scientific experts. That’s reassuring and even a little surprising, given the sizable and vocal anti-science contingent that attracts too much media attention. Biden’s decision is actually in line with the general public.

Advances in technology will create many alternatives for people to connect with each other during a virtual convention. No one thinks the energy of such large in-person meetings can be replaced, but conventions are no longer electorally important events anyway. Of course, there will be challenges: Remember the Iowa Caucus debacle? – But the DNC has already hired a producer who worked on the Super Bowl and the Tonys to create a television show. All Democrats really have to do to make their convention a success in these circumstances is set up a live stream and book Taylor Swift. By the time Biden delivers his acceptance speech, we should be used to seeing empty stadiums and stadiums dressed in digital gimmicks – the NBA, NHL, Major League Baseball, and Major League Soccer plan to complete their seasons without live viewers. Biden could tell his television audience that every empty seat at Milwaukee’s Central Wisconsin Represents 10 people who died from Donald Trump’s incompetence.

As usual, Republicans could have avoided Trump’s toxic decisions and opted not to, and are now risking the lives of their biggest supporters for political theater. Texas Republicans still plan to hold a face-to-face state convention, with no face mask requirements, next month in Houston, a city whose current virus numbers threaten to overwhelm the hospital system. Trump has done nothing, or worse than that. It has actively weakened our response, both before and after we knew the pandemic existed. Now his most loyal fans will pay the price.