Hillary Clinton spoke in the evening but because of all the women around speaking, working, organizing, you could see her presence at the party. I was able to participate in a virtual fundraiser she held for Onward Together. Her guest was Lin-Manuel Miranda. This very different convention has made it easier for so many people to come together.
The Virtual Delegation Breakfasts are richer every morning. The speakers have been great. We started with Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio, who came a little early to chat. He is so down to earth, practical but clearly dedicated to public service.
Senator Brown was followed by U.S. Jason Crow from CO CD6. I first met Jason at an Obama Rally on the state capitol steps in 2008, I was really impressed then and that has not changed. He won his seat, which had been elusive since created. We have to make sure that he is returned to Congress.
U.S. Rep. Sheila Jacksons represents a district in the Houston, Texas area. Her words were inspiring. Since I grew up 40 miles north of Houston, in Conroe, Texas. There was a predominance of Democrats then. Today much of Texas is Republican. It is exceptional to have a Democrat serving.
U.S. Rep. Al Green also spoke. His seat includes part of Houston and surrounding areas. He outlined the needs of his constituency. They are the same fundamental challenges for people all ovear the country.
We heard from Adam Dunstone, who is the Western Region Director for the Biden campaign. In addition, Ernest Apreza was introduced once again to the delegation. He is the director of the Colorado Coordinated Campaign.
The late morning and early afternoon caucuses, and policy roundtables provided a chance to continue to get updated. A session cohosted by the Colorado Democratic Party, focused specifically on Senate seats that are key to win the majority. Amy McGrath, running against Senator Mitch McConnell in Kentucky, was introduced by Senator Cory Booker. She gave a rousing campaign talk.
Best of the West was also co-hosted by Colorado and highlighted what is happening in the Western States. Colorado was represented by Morgan Carroll and U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse. Morgan gave a great intro for Joe but also talked about Colorado’s aspirations for this election. Joe was impressive as ever. As a son of Eritrea refugees, he has a unique story to tell. Beyond that, he has introduced over 40 bills into Congress already. And he is the leader of his freshman class.
I attended the session for women governors. There are only six states with a female Democrats as governor. I was particularly moved when the chair of the session, Gina Raimondo of Rhode Island, asked each one to describe their worst day. All of them are so articulate and smart. Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan talked about dealing with virus and having no supplies. Then the Presidential was sending out awful tweets against her. To really add to the stress was the collapse of the dams.
Kate Brown, Governor of Oregon, discussed the ongoing protests in the streets of Portland. The Presidential sent in plain clothes mercenaries which made the situation worse. Michele Luan Grisham of New Mexico said her worst day was receiving threats from a group calling for her execution, just as she was calling parents whose child had died.
For Laura Kelly of Kansas, the decision to shut down the schools was her worst moment. For Janet Mills of Maine, the first death from COVID was her worst day. All of them demonstrated the strength and compassion needed to govern in these times.
The evening program was rich with women speakers. Nancy Pelosi gave an excellent speech on public service. Elizabeth Warren was electrifying, as usual, particularly describing an economy that does not work for everyone. I loved her story of trying to find childcare so she could teach and almost giving up. Her aunt came to live with them to help with the children. I remember the childcare agonies myself.
Barack Obama’s speech was a call to action. But it also reminded us of what is at stack in this election. Especially was the call to young people to continuing questioning. He said he was “counting on your cynicism — a democracy withers until there is no democracy left.” I will continue to think about the speech and that phrase.
Kamala Harris was nominated from the chair of the convention since there were no other candidates. She gave the speech noting during it that we are celebrating to 100th anniversary of ratification of the women’s right to vote. She told the story of her mother and how she encouraged her. I think so many women can identify with that, as I do. I loved the phrase that she and Joe have “a vision of our nation as a beloved community. Yes.