Written by Ann Brown
Aug 21, 2020
The Democratic National Convention just wrapped up to good reviews and the Republican National Convention is set to start Aug. 24.
After that, there will be a third convention — the People’s Convention — which has been organized by and for “disaffected progressives.” It will take place from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern Time on Aug. 30 and will be broadcast live on YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter.
A lineup of heavy-hitting progressives includes author and Prof. Cornel West, self-help author and former presidential hopeful Marianne Williamson, and Nina Turner, former co-chairwoman of the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign.
All three have spoken out against the Joe Biden campaign. In fact, Turner recently said voting like Biden would be like eating “half a bowl of sh**t.”
West has called Biden out a number of times. Once, he declared that Biden had to get off his “symbolic crack pipe” or risk losing Black voters to Trump.
The goal of the People’s Convention it to have an open debate on the possibility of starting a third party.
Former Sen. Mike Gravel, a contender who ran for the White House earlier this year, will appear. So will Chris Smalls, a five-year Amazon employee who was fired in March after helping to organize a walk-out from a Staten Island Amazon warehouse. He protested after management forced employees to work during a coronavirus outbreak with insufficient protection. Smalls has since founded The Congress of Essential Workers.
Williamson talked about the need for the new party in the U.S.
“An entirely new way of being is struggling to be born, and we need a political container for it — one that puts humanitarian values before amoral economic ones, and breaks free of a 20th-century political paradigm that no longer serves our democracy or even our survival on the planet,” Williamson said in a statement. “A new birth of freedom is struggling to be born, emerging from the hearts and minds of millions of people no longer willing to go along with systems that devolve rather than evolve our life on earth.”
In A Politico interview, Smalls talked about so-called “radical” ideas.
“It has become clear that neither the Democratic nor the Republican Party truly cares about working-class people,” Smalls said. “Both party platforms think that our demands like Medicare for All, raising the minimum wage to $30 andhour, a wealth tax, and the right to unionize without fear of retaliation, are radical ideas.”
The pressure is mounting for the Democrats, especially if the People’s Convention moves ahead with a third party. Even though Biden is currently ahead in most polls, there is no guarantee he will take the White House.
Trump could win.
“Facing the combined calamities of a pandemic and an economic meltdown, Trump hasn’t collapsed. His base never really grows, but neither does it crumple, keeping him competitive,” The Atlantic reported.
“If Trump could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and not lose supporters, he could also raise the dead on Fifth Avenue and not gain any supporters,” said Charles Franklin, director of the Marquette Law School poll.
There are several factors that could weigh in Trump’s favor. For one, the economy could come back just enough to give voters confidence in him. Or, the polls indicating Biden is ahead could be wrong — they have been before. Then, add in Biden’s own problems with progressives like those expected at the People’s Convention. Biden “still symbolizes a brand of establishment centrism that leaves some younger voters and some in the party’s activist wing uninspired,” The Atlantic reported.
The Black vote could abandon the Democratic party and either go for Trump or not vote at all. High-profile celebrities like Diddy and Ice Cube have warned that they will hold the Black vote hostage until the Black community gets what it wants — reparations.
Mail-in voter suppression is also a growing concern, and this most likely would hurt Biden.