Nick Gass writes about Politico on the chaos plaguing the opening day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
Democrats on Monday struggled to contain the chaos that threatened to take hold in Philadelphia, as Debbie Wasserman Schultz bowed out of plans to gavel in the Democratic National Convention and restless Bernie Sanders’ supporters lashed out.
A day after the resignation of the embattled party chairwoman over a massive leak of emails showing disdain for Sanders’ campaign, the party could not escape the optics of a convention marred by discord, much like the Republicans’ the week before. And once again, Hillary Clinton has found herself ensnared in another email-related controversy.
Trouble started early Monday, when Wasserman Schultz’s debut at the convention proved disastrous. The Florida congresswoman as was heckled as she tried to speak before the Florida delegation breakfast, with some in the room yelling “Shame!”
“So I can see that’s little bit of interest in my being here and I appreciate that interest,” Wasserman Schultz said amid the cacophony. “And a little bit of interest from the press but that really shows you that Florida is the most significant battleground state that will make sure that Hillary Clinton is elected president of the United States of America. We are the state that will deliver the White House to make sure that we can continue to make the progress that we have been able to make under Barack Obama for the last eight years.”
By Monday afternoon, as concerns grew about Wasserman Schultz also being jeered on stage, the outgoing DNC chair said she would step aside.
“I have decided that in the interest of making sure that we can start the Democratic convention on a high note that I am not going to gavel in the convention,” Wasserman Schultz told the Sun Sentinel.
Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, the mayor of Baltimore and secretary of the DNC, gaveled in the convention at 4 p.m. instead.
There were also signs that Sanders’ supporters will not be accepting Clinton’s nomination quietly — and that Sanders’ camp was not actively trying to shut down some disturbances.
Before news hit that Wasserman Schultz would bow out of the night’s festivities, Sanders’ campaign manager Jeff Weaver said his team “would certainly encourage people to be respectful” but that he couldn’t guarantee what they would do.
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