The Democratic National Convention kicks off at Wells Fargo Center on Monday, promising a “United Together” theme even as leaked emails from the Democratic National Committee forced the party’s chairwoman to resign. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont will get a prime-time spot to push his platform, and Michelle Obama will lend a bit of White House glamour to the night.
The leaked emails threaten to undermine unity at the Democratic convention.
If there was one thing Hillary Clinton didn’t need as she prepared to accept her party’s presidential nomination this week, it was another email scandal.
But the release of about 20,000 leaked emails — which suggested the party had worked to undermine the Sanders campaign and forced Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the party’s chairwoman, to announce her resignation on Sunday — is likely to continue fueling resentment among many of Mr. Sanders’s delegates at the convention.
Mrs. Clinton’s campaign had hoped that the convention would showcase unity in the party after a bruising and divisive nomination contest whose outcome left many young and liberal Democrats less than satisfied. Instead, the emails — which reveal snarky, blunt criticism of Mr. Sanders by top Democratic National Committee officials — could amplify the frustration felt by his delegates about what they consider a rigged process.
A large crowd of demonstrators expressed that frustration on Sunday in downtown Philadelphia, with chants of “hell, no, D.N.C., we won’t vote for Hillary.”
Sanders will get his last chance to push his agenda on the big stage.
His supporters may not like it, but Mr. Sanders has acknowledged defeat and endorsed Mrs. Clinton. Even so, on Monday, he will get one last chance to push his agenda in front of an audience of millions.
In appearances on news programs on Sunday morning, Mr. Sanders made it clear that he will use his speech to continue pressing for an ideological revolution that advances party priorities like a higher minimum wage, government health care, breaking up big banks and rebuilding infrastructure.
“We have got to continue bringing people in, fighting for an agenda that works for working families and having the courage to take on the big-money people who today control our economic and political life,” he said on ABC’s “This Week.” Expect Mr. Sanders to have a similar message on Monday night.
And though Mr. Sanders, who called for a broad overhaul of the party’s nominating process, was Mrs. Clinton’s chief rival during the primaries, his appearance at the convention is unlikely to produce controversy like that of Senator Ted Cruz at the Republican National Convention last week in Cleveland. Mr. Sanders has already been clear that he hopes Mrs. Clinton will win in November.
“Right now, we have got to defeat Trump; we have to elect Hillary Clinton,” he said on “This Week,” referring to the Republican nominee, Donald J. Trump.