Hard to imagine higher stakes for Hillary Clinton than tonight. The founding principles of her campaign have been illuminated by some of the best orators in the business. Now it’s her turn to close the deal with voters. NJTV News Correspondent Briana Vannozzi is standing by outside the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. She spoke with Anchor Mary Alice Williams.
Williams: Briana, Hillary has a big night ahead of her but she hit the stage last night, right?
Vannozzi: Good evening, Mary Alice. That’s right. Last night we had a heavy hitter list of speakers — President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, VP nominee Tim Kaine, who introduced himself for the first time to the nation — and Hillary Clinton, unbeknownst to many, came out on stage after President Obama’s speech to thunderous applause. Like her or not, this is a historical moment in our nation’s history. Forty-four men have held this position and now potentially the first female president. President Obama last night said that not he nor Bill Clinton nor any other man or woman were more qualified for this position than she. And it’s tough to get a bigger endorsement than that. The gloves were off last night. The attacks on Donald Trump were on. In fact, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg called him a con artist. He said, “I’m from New York. I can spot one when I see one.” And the delegates were loving the attacks there.
Williams: What does Hillary Clinton need to do tonight?
Vannozzi: So the latest polls still show that more than 70 percent of voters find her untrustworthy. Now the Republicans are being criticized for painting an America that’s overly pessimistic. The Democrats are conversely being criticized for painting an America that is overly optimistic. And that’s part of the problem is that voters feel that neither party is really reaching to the issues, to the middle class, the working class, the fact that the economy is still sluggish. And so Hillary Clinton needs to find a happy medium there. She needs to be able to speak to those voters’ issues and appeal to them in a way that makes her appear trustworthy. And it’s a big task ahead but we’ve heard hours and hours of testimony from some of the most powerful political figures and tonight’s her night to make the case for herself.
Williams: And what are you hearing about Bernie Sanders supporters?
Vannozzi: So we’re told from a few of the delegates who have been very heavily involved with some of the walkouts and protests that the plan tonight was to stage a walkout during or just prior to Hillary Clinton’s speech, however, as you can imagine with the likes of former and sitting presidents around, Secret Service has this entire arena on lockdown so it’s making it very difficult to get in or out. And we’re told that it’s more likely the delegates won’t walk out, but they may stand in a show of solidarity for Bernie Sanders with tape over their mouths. Some of them tend to write phrases over that. But they may stand up with that tape over their mouths during her speech if they don’t walk out, though that’s still a factor in play to show that they’re not going down without a fight.
Williams: All right, thank you Briana Vannozzi.