Just days after we at Milwaukee Magazine published this informative letter to presidential candidate Joe Biden about how he could make the most of his visit to Milwaukee, news has dropped that the former vice president will no longer be visiting us for the Democratic National Convention.
The DNC Committee sent out a news release Wednesday morning saying that Biden and all other convention speakers will not be traveling to Milwaukee for the DNC, “in order to prevent risking the health of our host community as well as the convention’s production teams, security officials, community partners, media and others necessary to orchestrate the event.”
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In the year of 2020, aka the year of the pandemic, the highly anticipated DNC has been adapted and warped multiple times in an effort to adjust for health concerns.
Back in April we were assured that yes, the DNC was still happening in Milwaukee, we just have to push the dates back from July to August. Huzzah! The event was still on, it was just delayed, like so many others at the time. We knew the event would be scaled back, but at least it wasn’t canceled.
More news came in June, as word trickled out about what a shrunken DNC would look like. There were a lot of unknowns at the time, but one thing was certain: Biden was coming, and he would accept his nomination in Milwaukee.
Then, the event took a not entirely unexpected turn toward a mostly virtual platform in late June. The event was moved out of the brand-new Fiserv Forum and into the Wisconsin Center, delegates were no longer coming and Biden was among a small list of speakers who would be traveling to Milwaukee.
They also started to call it a “Convention Across America,” which doesn’t really highlight Milwaukee as the host city.
Today’s news that Biden and the other scheduled speakers would not be making the trip to our city leaves Milwaukee with one central question: What’s left? According to the DNC Committee, the answer is four nights of programming with broadcasts from “across the country,” including Delaware, where Biden will accept his nomination.
This national event was supposed to shine a spotlight on our city and stimulate the economic boom that comes with it. Now, if we’re lucky, Biden might say Milwaukee in his speech.