Former First Lady Michelle Obama kicked off the Democratic National Convention on Monday night. Obama joined other politicians, including Sen. Bernie Sanders and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, in speaking on the opening night of the convention, which primarily took place remotely amidst the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Not only did Obama address many of the issues plaguing Americans right now, but she also issued her support for former Vice President Joe Biden and his running mate Senator Kamala Harris as they strive to win the upcoming presidential election against the incumbent President Donald Trump.
Obama stressed the importance of letting your voice be heard in the upcoming presidential election. She also acknowledged the various problems that Americans have been facing over the last several months, such as issues tying back to the coronavirus pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement. Of course, the former First Lady also spoke out about Trump's presidency, saying that instead of "steadiness," Americans have received "chaos" from the president. She said at one point, "Being president doesn't change who you are, it reveals who you are. Well, a presidential election can reveal who we are, too."
The Democratic National Convention was originally supposed to take place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. But, due to the coronavirus pandemic, many of the events have since gone the virtual route. In June, Democratic officials announced that they would be scaling back this year's DNC considerably after having already pushed the event back by a full month. The Democratic National Convention Committee later announced in mid-July that members of Congress should plan on not attending the event in person, per CNN. Chasseny Lewis, a convention committee member, wrote in an email to congressional aides, "We have been working closely with state and local public health officials, as well [as] epidemiologists, and have come to the hard decision that members of Congress should not plan to travel to Milwaukee. No delegates will travel to Milwaukee and Caucus and Council meetings will take place virtually."
Katie Peters, a spokesperson for the convention, also released a statement about the event's virtual plans. In her statement, she expressed that they would be sure to keep delegates aware of how they can engage in the convention from home. "Ensuring the safety and well-being of everyone involved with the 2020 Democratic National Convention drives every decision we make, and this communication reiterates our guidance from several weeks ago that all members of state delegations—including elected leaders—should plan to conduct their official business remotely," Peters' statement read. "Last week, we sent delegates guidance on how they will vote and we look forward to sharing more details on other opportunities for delegates in the coming weeks."