Political circus moves to Philadelphia: Democratic National Convention commences

Email scandal dominates as attention switches to DNC in Philadelphia; Clinton and Kaine make impressive debut together; Trump returns to usual style in Friday presser

Attention switches from Cleveland to Philadelphia this week, as the Democratic National Convention commences Monday. But hopes of positive momentum were stymied as a leak of 20,000 emails on Friday from the party’s servers distributed on WikiLeaks showed anti-Bernie Sanders bias by the DNC and party chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz. She was stood down from her duties and from presiding over the week’s convention in Philadelphia; Ohio Rep. Marcia Fudge will instead oversee the conference as chairwoman. Clinton campaign manager Robbie Mook suggested Sunday the Russians were behind the ill-timed email leak.

The Democrats will convene under a United Together theme in the hope of striking a more positive and progressive tone than the RNC in Cleveland last week. Hillary Clinton and Vice President running mate Tim Kaine appeared on 60 Minutes Sunday night, striking a more comfortable pose than their RNC equivalents the week prior.

If anyone wasn’t already familiar with Democratic nominee Kaine, they were after the Virginia Governor’s acceptance speech in Miami on Saturday. Mixing English and fluent Spanish, Kaine gave a confident and polished performance.

In contrast to the RNC, the DNC’s speaker line-up this week will be full of party establishment figures, including FLOTUS Michelle Obama, Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton’s husband and former President Bill Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden, and President Obama. Former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg will also endorse Clinton in a speech to the convention. Celebrities such as Katy Perry and Lena Dunham will also speak.

Politico reports that former Tesla global comms VP Ricardo Reyes is part of a new group launched Friday called Republicans for Clinton, who argue that the best strategy for voters in this election is to opt for the Democratic nominee rather than Donald Trump, because the latter’s principles do not align with those of the Republican Party.

After sticking largely to the Teleprompter in his lengthy keynote speech last Thursday night, RNC nominee Donald Trump returned to his stream of consciousness style of delivery at a presser on Friday morning wrapping the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. He insisted he would not accept an endorsement from Texas senator Ted Cruz, even if it was forthcoming, and exalted the credibility of the National Enquirer.

Trump used the press conference to thank a long list of people related to the campaign, including former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who was forced out of his role last month after an internal battle, saying "he’s been very loyal, and he’s been on CNN and he’s been fighting for me." Running mate Mike Pence stood alongside Trump throughout, looking uncomfortable, confining himself to a few short remarks when he was finally handed the microphone.

The Republican presidential nominee also name-checked his spokesperson Hope Hicks during the speech and tried to bring her up on stage during the presser. "She's very shy, but she's a great person. She's done an amazing job," said Trump. Replacement campaign manager Paul Manafort also received a shout-out.

In other news… Verizon reported to be buying Yahoo’s core business for $5 billion… French luxury behemoth LVMH sells Donna Karan to G-III for $600 million… J&J pays $18 million to make Acclarent marketing claim go away… Nintendo shares drop as Pokémon effect downplayed.

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