Democratic National Convention 2020: Day 2

By Melissa Macaya, Kyle Blaine and Jessica Estepa, CNN

Updated 6:20 p.m. ET, August 19, 2020
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11:50 p.m. ET, August 18, 2020

Biden officially wins Democratic nomination

From CNN's Eric Bradner

Democratic National Convention
Democratic National Convention

Joe Biden was officially nominated for president by the Democratic Party on Tuesday night.

After his home state of Delaware delivered the final delegates in his favor, the former Vice President appeared live on screen for the first time in the convention.

Shots of Biden and his wife Jill Biden -- and then his grandchildren, who shot celebratory streamers over him -- were interspersed with videos of Americans cheering.

"Thank you all from the bottom of my heart from my family, and I'll see you on Thursday," Biden said, referring to his upcoming speech to close the convention.

Watch the moment:

Former President Barack Obama tweeted congrats to Biden on his acceptance of the nomination.

"Congrats, Joe. I'm proud of you," Obama said.

6:20 p.m. ET, August 19, 2020

Fact Check: Trump and the "hoax"

From CNN's Daniel Dale

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said Tuesday about Milwaukee Democrats: "Unlike the President, we've never called Covid-19 a hoax."

Facts FirstAt a February campaign rally, Trump did call something related to the virus a Democratic "hoax." The President left it unclear, though, whether he was calling the virus itself a hoax or saying that Democratic criticism of his administration's handling of the virus was a hoax. When he was asked the next day, he said he was talking specifically about the Democratic criticism.

We can't call Barrett's claim false despite Trump's next-day explanation: The President's imprecise claim at the rally was open to viewer interpretation. But it's worth noting that there is certainly a more benign way to view it. For your reference, here's what Trump said at the rally:

"Very dishonest people. Now the Democrats are politicizing the coronavirus. You know that, right? Coronavirus. They're politicizing it. We did one of the great jobs, you say, 'How's President Trump doing?' They go, 'Oh, not good, not good.' They have no clue. They don't have any clue. ... One of my people came up to me and said, Mr. President, they tried to beat you on Russia, Russia, Russia. That didn't work out too well. They couldn't do it. They tried the impeachment hoax. That was on a perfect conversation. They tried anything, they tried it over and over, they've been doing it since she got in. It's all turning, they lost. It's all turning, think of it, think of it. And this is their new hoax."

10:51 p.m. ET, August 18, 2020

Gold Star father Khizr Khan recalls 2017 Charlottesville violence in roll call

From CNN's Adrienne Vogt and Melissa Macaya

Gold Star father Khizr Khan, who represented Virginia in the roll call to officially nominate Joe Biden as the presidential Democratic nominee, invoking the violence that happened in Charlottesville in 2017 in his remarks.

"Three years ago, my beloved city Charlottesville was attacked by white supremacists when a young woman was killed. We were attacked again when Donald Trump praised those racists, turning his back on a community that just wanted peace," Khan said.

"That was the day Joe Biden decided to join this battle for the soul of America. Over time, my wife and I have come to know his soul. He's a decent, compassionate man. He will bring the nation together," he added.

This was Khan's second appearance at the 2020 Democratic National Convention, who was also included in a video about the convention's theme on Monday.

Virginia cast 32 votes for Bernie Sanders and 91 votes for Joe Biden. 

9:57 p.m. ET, August 18, 2020

Why Delaware passed in the roll call vote

From CNN's Kate Sullivan

Democratic National Convention
Democratic National Convention

The roll call vote to nominate Joe Biden for president is going in alphabetical order at the convention, but Delaware, Biden's home state, passed so that it can be the decisive state to nominate Biden.

Gov. John Carney and Sen. Tom Carper are expected to appear for Delaware.

10:03 p.m. ET, August 18, 2020

Roll call vote to officially nominate Biden for president begins

From CNN's Kate Sullivan

The roll call vote to formally nominate Joe Biden for president has begun at the Democratic National Convention. 

The roll call vote will be held with people from all 57 states and territories appearing over video. The range of Democrats set to nominate Biden includes elected officials, including a number of his 2020 opponents, to activists like a fisherman from Alaska, a farmer in Kansas and a bricklayer in Missouri.


9:58 p.m. ET, August 18, 2020

Security guard who said "I love you" to Biden in an elevator delivers nominating speech

From CNN's Eric Bradner

The New York Times security guard Jacquelyn Asbie.
The New York Times security guard Jacquelyn Asbie. Democratic National Convention

The New York Times security guard who blurted "I love you" to Joe Biden in an elevator -- and delivered the former vice president his first viral moment of the 2020 campaign -- officially nominated him for president on Tuesday night.

Jacquelyn Asbie, whose elevator conversation with Biden on the way to an editorial board meeting proved much more potent for the Biden campaign than the newspaper's actual endorsement (it backed Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar), played the ceremonial role of kicking off the vote on Biden's nomination.

In a brief but heartfelt speech, she said she felt in their short interaction that "my life meant something to him."

"I take powerful people up in my elevator all the time. When they get off, they go to their important meetings. Me? I just head back to the lobby," she said. "But in the short time I spent with Joe Biden, I could tell he really saw me, that he actually cared, that my life meant something to him. And I knew, even when he went into his important meeting, he’d take my story in there with him."

Asbie continued: "That’s because Joe Biden has room in his heart for more than just himself. We’ve been through a lot, and we have tough days ahead. But nominating someone like that to be in the White House is a good place to start. That’s why I nominate my friend, Joe Biden, as the next president of the United States."

Her nomination of Biden was seconded by two of his home-state allies in Delaware's congressional delegation: Sen. Chris Coons, who said that "he’s always brought that same personal concern he showed for Jacquelyn to getting things done as our senator and then as President Obama’s vice president." And Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester, who said Biden "restored decency to our government and integrity to our democracy."

Watch the moment:

10:17 p.m. ET, August 18, 2020

Ocasio-Cortez fits big ideas into brief speaking spot

From CNN's Gregory Krieg

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Democratic National Convention

She only had a little more than a minute, but she fit a whole lot in it.

New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wasn’t given much time to address the country, as she seconded Sen. Bernie Sanders’ nomination, but in those 95 seconds she offered a poetic accounting of the progressive movement’s aspirations – and offered her “fidelity and gratitude” to those in the fight alongside her.

This “mass people’s movement,” she said, is dedicated to addressing the “the wounds of racial injustice, colonization, misogyny, and homophobia,” and building “reimagined systems of immigration and foreign policy that turn away from the violence and xenophobia of our past.”

It is a movement, Ocasio-Cortez said, “that realizes the unsustainable brutality of an economy that rewards explosive inequalities of wealth for the few at the expense of long-term stability for the many, and who organized a historic, grassroots campaign to reclaim our democracy.”

That campaign, now over, is Sanders’. But the crises he described during his campaign and Ocasio-Cortez spoke about on Tuesday night, are very much alive.

“In a time when millions of people in the United States are looking for deep systemic solutions to our crises of mass evictions, unemployment, and lack of health care, and ​espíritu del pueblo and out of a love for all people,” she said, “I hereby second the nomination of Senator Bernard Sanders of Vermont for president of the United States of America.”
9:44 p.m. ET, August 18, 2020

JFK’s grandson: US needs "a president who asks what he can do for our country"

From CNN's Adrienne Vogt

Caroline Kennedy and Jack Schlossberg.
Caroline Kennedy and Jack Schlossberg. Democratic National Convention

President John F. Kennedy’s grandson Jack Schlossberg echoed his grandfather’s famous words — “ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country” — when speaking about Joe Biden during the Democratic National Convention. 

“We can reach these new frontiers, but only with a President who asks what he can do for our country and what together we can do to build a better world. It's up to us. Let's get it done,” Schlossberg said. 

Schlossberg said this election is a defining one for his generation. 

“Times have changed. But the themes of my grandfather's speech — courage, unity and patriotism — are as important today as they were in 1960. And once again, we need a leader who believes America's best days are yet to come,” he said.  

Kennedy’s daughter and Schlossberg’s mother, Caroline Kennedy, said she was able to see Biden “in action” when she was US ambassador to Japan. 

“He stepped off Air Force Two wearing his aviator glasses and a big smile, radiating American optimism and generosity. I saw a leader who was tough but fair,” she said.

9:48 p.m. ET, August 18, 2020

Chuck Schumer: "Joe can't do it alone. Democrats must take back the Senate"

From CNN's Leinz Vales

Sen. Chuck Schumer.
Sen. Chuck Schumer. Democratic National Convention

With the backdrop of the Statue of Liberty in New York, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer emphatically said that the Democrats must retake the Senate in November. 

"If we're going to win this battle for the soul of our nation, Joe can't do it alone," Schumer said in address at the Democratic National Convention. "Democrats must take back the Senate. We will stay united, from Sanders and Warren to Manchin and Warner and with our unity we will bring bold and dramatic change to our country."

The New York senator went on to lay out the policy goals that would be accomplished under a Biden presidency and a Democratic majority in Congress. 

"We will make health care affordable for all. We'll undue the vicious inequality of income and wealth that has plagued America for far too long and we'll take strong decisive action to combat climate change and save the planet," Schumer said. "We will protect voting rights, fight systemic racism in the criminal justice system and in our economy, and restore a Supreme Court that looks out for people not corporations. We'll rebuild our infrastructure and make sure every home from inner city to rural America has broadband. We will save the post office and once and for all defeat Covid-19, this evil disease. And beckoned by the lady behind us, we will reform our immigration system so that immigrants yearning to breathe free will at last become American citizens."