Having made history, the party begins the time-honored political process of passing the baton. At the Democratic National Convention, both the president and vice president will address delegates and hand the podium off to Secretary Hillary Clinton’s vice presidential ticket mate Tim Kaine. And having won a place at the table and planks in the party platform, Bernie Sanders’ role recedes. But his most ardent supporters are doing no such thing. NJTV News Chief Political Correspondent Michael Aron is standing by outside the convention center. He spoke with Anchor Mary Alice Williams.
Williams: Michael, fair to say few people saw what you witnessed last night?
Aron: That’s correct Mary Alice. NJTV News was one of the few news organizations out here to cover a protest. We’re on South Broad Street about half a mile from the Wells Fargo Center. Maybe 500 to 600 Bernie Sanders supporters joined by a few dozen Black Lives Matter demonstrators marched up and down this street last night. It was mainly peaceful, but there were a few tense moments.
This is the fence where that action took place and this is the remnants of that little bonfire we saw in the piece a few minutes ago. As angry as some of those demonstrators seemed, and you could hear it, they also seemed somehow out of sync with Bernie Sanders himself who was inside the Wells Fargo Center back there handing his delegates to Hillary Clinton by acclamation. Two very different moods outside and inside. Mary Alice?
Williams: Right Michael. Tell us about the earlier protest inside the perimeter.
Aron: Mary Alice, somebody said if you want to get the media’s attention, occupy the media’s location. There is a small media tent across a patio from the convention center. It was stormed by Sanders supporters last night. I don’t know how many of them were actual delegates or people who got passes from Sanders’ delegates. They held it for about an hour. The place was shut down. It was full of mostly smaller news organizations, which is why you didn’t see it on the major networks, but it was significant.
Williams: Very quickly, how widespread is the disaffection?
Aron: That’s the big question. If 50 percent of the Sanders supporters are disaffected from Clinton, that’s a problem. If it’s more like 1 percent as I suspect, she can probably survive that. We’re hearing that there could be another demonstration tonight. Mostly it’s been happening at City Hall four miles from here. Back to you.
Williams: OK, thank you very much, Michael. Thank you.