What do you think? Leave a respectful comment.

NHWE Politics Recap: DNC victories and failures, Trump’s RNC plans

The Republican National Convention will kick off on Monday with some in-person events and a small group of delegates heading to Charlotte, North Carolina to rally support for President Trump, who in an unprecedented move is slated to speak every evening of the convention. The Democrats wrapped up their virtual convention last Thursday, with attacks on the president’s record and character. Special Correspondent Jeff Greenfield joins.

Read the Full Transcript

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    Last week, Democrats wrapped up their unconventional political convention without the traditional crowds and hoopla, but with sharp attacks on the record and character of the sitting president.

    Tomorrow, it's the Republicans turn with some in-person events and a small group of GOP delegates heading to Charlotte, North Carolina, to rally their support for the president, who promises to make a speech each evening.

    Still, new revelations and allegations continue to confront him and his record.

    Special Correspondent Jeff Greenfield joins us from Santa Barbara, California.

    Jeff, before we get to the tapes, so to speak, your thoughts on the convention that just happened?

  • Jeff Greenfield:

    I was struck by the degree to which the Democrats were embracing the idea of diversity, who they showed and how they showed them unapologetically in the streets, organizing, protesting, activism.

    And I think that's a consequence of numbers. The Democratic Party is far more diverse than it was, say, when Bill Clinton became president. Forty percent of registered Democrats are nonwhite. And when you add to that the gender gap, which is a chasm right now, Trump leads men by 13 points; Biden leads women by 25. They were doubling down on saying, we need you, the core of our party, you get involved and we're not going to make any apologies for it. We're not going to be hesitant about it. This is who we are.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    At times it felt a bit like a pledge drive because there were so many calls to sign up to become a donor. And then there was also an incredibly consistent message to just get people to vote. And we're still a couple of months away.

  • Jeff Greenfield:

    That's right. And it's kind of odd, you know. Well, they love me in November, as they do in August.

    But here's what researchers have known for decades. The more you can ask the voter to think about how she will vote: mail, in-person, what time, the more likely they are to vote. And there were painful memories of four years ago, some Democrats said well, Hillary is going to win. We can not show up. Maybe we'll vote third party. There was a clear fall off from the African-American vote in key cities that helped turn some of the states in the upper Midwest to Trump by a tiny margin. And when you add to that the fears to of voter suppression of skullduggery, maybe the mail screwing up, yeah, they want that message out early and often.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    So let's shift gears to what's coming up this week in true unconventional form. The president is planning to address the nation every night of his convention.

  • Jeff Greenfield:

    First of all, they're going to try to make it look a little more like a real convention. There are a few hundred delegates down in Charlotte that will formally nominate Trump will be speaking to audiences.

    And you're right. This is unprecedented. Presidents usually show up every night to just wave and say, hi, I'll see you Thursday night. But apparently the president means to talk every night in primetime. He appears to be convinced that the more he is on television, weather it be, a coronavirus, so-called briefings or this, the better he will do.

    And we also know that speaking into a camera like an Oval Office address, that is not Trump's best format to be the very kind about it. So, yeah, we're going to hear from him and his family. All right well, not everybody in his family. That's going to be what we're going to hear the next four nights.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    Based on the tapes that were made public through the Washington Post last night, I suspect the president's sister is not going to have a marquee role.

  • Jeff Greenfield:

    Yeah. And the amazing thing is that was that was the end of a week any one story which would have in other times just blown the whole political spectrum before. You know, the the postmaster general is being called to Congress and saying, are you trying to mess with the mail for political reasons?

    The Senate Intelligence Committee controlled by Republicans, says, you know, not only was Russia trying to interfere, but a senior Trump campaign official was cherry pulled out with a Russian intelligence official. Then the president's former senior strategist, Steve Bannon, is arrested by postal authorities, by the way, on a on a huge yacht. And then we have the tapes to the president's sister, the retired federal judge, who's basically saying he's a liar, he's unprincipled, and somebody else took his exam.

    And what you have to realize, we've seen this now for five years, it's the sheer quantity of all these allegations that somehow almost cancel each other out. And his supporters are, eh more fake news.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    And this is just August. What kinds of October surprises or closer to the election could we possibly see?

  • Jeff Greenfield:

    Well, there's one that we just learned yesterday. NASA says an asteroid is headed toward Earth and there is a 4/10ths of one percent chance, I'm not making this up, Hari, that it will strike the earth the day before the election. And if I'm a betting man, I'm going to take those odds given what we've lived through so far.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    Jeff, that sounds like a great reason to vote early.

  • Jeff Greenfield:

    Very good point, Hari.

  • Hari Sreenivasan:

    All right. Jeff Greenfield joining us from Santa Barbara, California. Thanks so much.

  • Jeff Greenfield:

    Ok.

Listen to this Segment

The Latest