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Dispatches From Philadelphia: Day 1

The Prospect's ongoing coverage from inside and outside the 2016 Democratic National Convention. 

AP Photo/John Locher
At Democratic Convention, Bernie's Army Takes on a Life of Its Own dem_convention_icon.jpg On the eve of the Democratic Convention, Bernie Sanders’s army has split into two columns, marching in opposite directions. While the Bernie-or-Bust faction here at the convention still would like to stage floor fights or at least express their discontent volubly, Sanders will endeavor to talk them out of such actions at a 2 p.m. meeting today—two hours before the convention is called to order. His campaign also has put in place a whip operation on the convention floor to persuade his followers, if needs be, to cool it. “Bernie will talk with his delegates about how they can further the revolution in the states, running for office, putting together campaigns,” said one campaign adviser. “And he’ll encourage them to vote for Hillary in November.” Sanders, his lieutenants and the most of the more-experienced Sanders delegates believe, with good reason,...

Dispatches From Cleveland

The Prospect's ongoing coverage from inside and outside the 2016 Republican National Convention. 

Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call via AP Images
gop_convention_icon.jpg Trump's Dystopia “I have visited the laid-off factory workers and the communities crushed by our horrible and unfair trade deals,” Donald Trump said last night. “These are the forgotten men and women of our country. People who work hard but no longer have a voice. “I AM YOUR VOICE.” Those words were capitalized in the written text of Trump’s acceptance speech. That all-caps sentence was meant to be a big deal. And so it is. Franklin Roosevelt spoke up about “the forgotten man” during his 1932 campaign, in a time when the nation really had plunged into the kind of abyss that Trump spent well over an hour last night trying to convince his listeners is back again. But Roosevelt never claimed that he was his supporters’ voice. Nor did Lincoln or Washington. “I have joined the political arena so that the powerful can no longer beat up on people who cannot defend themselves,” Trump also said. “...

Dispatches From Cleveland: Day 4

The Prospect's ongoing coverage from inside and outside the 2016 Republican National Convention. 

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call via AP Images
HAROLD MEYERSON Boos for Cruz gop_convention_icon.jpg Day Three of Donald Trump’s convention has come and gone, and we have already seen two unplanned disruptions the likes of which hadn’t visited the GOP since its uproarious Goldwater Convention of 1964. On Monday afternoon, Ted Cruz’s delegates booed and shouted so loudly after they lost their fight to change the convention rules that the party chairman left the stage and the proceedings ground to a halt. Last night, as it became clear that Cruz would not conclude his speech to the delegates with a Trump endorsement, Trump’s delegates all but booed him off the stage. Maybe this is what happens when Republicans abruptly shift course, as they did in ’64 and as they’re doing today. When the GOP takes a radically new direction, all hell breaks loose. In ’64, a party that had been dominated by moderate Eastern elites, friendly to civil rights and even resigned to living with unions, personified...

Dispatches From Cleveland: Day 3

The Prospect's ongoing coverage from inside and outside the 2016 Republican National Convention. 

Monica Jorge/Sipa via AP Images
HAROLD MEYERSON Citizen Trump gop_convention_icon.jpg The theme of Night Two of the Republican Convention was “Make America Work Again,” but the jobs that the delegates plainly wished to create were jailers’ –the guys who would “Lock her up.” The “her,” if you’ve been orbiting Jupiter and have missed the reduction of the Republican Party to a communal hate-fest, was Hillary Clinton. “Lock her up” was the delegates’ shouted refrain in response to New Jersey Governor’s Chris Christie’s “indictment” of Clinton for crimes against America (crimes so horrible, in fact, that they actually didn’t happen). This is, so far, the “Lock Her Up” convention. Republicans have spent more time vilifying, defaming, and demonizing Clinton (literally demonizing—Ben Carson twice linked her to Lucifer) than they have extolling Donald Trump. Any articulation of a Republican program,...

Dispatches From Cleveland: Day 2

The Prospect's ongoing coverage from inside and outside the 2016 Republican National Convention. 

AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster
HAROLD MEYERSON The Trump Show is Trapped in Time gop_convention_icon.jpg What time is it? What year is it? The first night of Donald Trump’s convention suggested we were back in an earlier age, when crime was rampant, fear stalked the cities, and good people hunkered down in their homes and prayed the storm would pass. “The vast majority of Americans do not feel safe,” Rudy Giuliani grimly announced, before proclaiming that Trump would restore order in America as he, Rudy (thumping his chest to make sure you understood he meant himself), had in New York. Never mind that serious crime has fallen by a quarter since 2006, and had been halved in the decade preceding. Dangers lurk everywhere. To prove the point, Trump’s handlers produced three parents of sons killed by undocumented immigrants. Two were killed in auto accidents, however, and with more than 30,000 Americans killed in such accidents every year, it’s hard to argue on the basis of two cases that...

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