Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett calls second session of Democratic National Convention to order

Screenshot+from+DNC+livestream.

Screenshot from DNC livestream.

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett called the second session of the 2020 Democratic National Convention to order Tuesday night, addressing the DNC’s transition to a mostly virtual setting and voicing his pride in the Democratic Party and the city of Milwaukee in their handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I would love to be welcoming you to my home city right now,” he said. “The good people of Milwaukee and I were so excited when we learned that our resilient city was chosen to host the 2020 Democratic National Convention.” 

Barrett is Milwaukee’s 40th mayor and was first elected in 2004. He was reelected in 2008, 2012 and 2016 with over 70% of the vote, according to the city’s website.

He said this was the first time Milwaukee had been chosen to host a political convention for a major party. 

“But these are not conventional times and … as we all know this is not a conventional convention,” he said. He took pride in the Democratic Party for making public health a number one priority, denouncing incumbent President Donald Trump’s responses to the pandemic.

“Unlike the president, we’ve never called COVID-19 a hoax,” he said. “Unlike the president, we’ve never made fun of face masks. And unlike the president, we’ve never belittled our public health experts.”  

The mayor said Democrats are virtually coming together to nominate Joe Biden as the party’s candidate, showing the rest of the country they have chosen a leader who will not shy away from difficult decisions.

“We’re nominating a leader who isn’t afraid to … work with health experts — not against them — to address this pandemic,” Barrett said. 

He closed his speech by inviting viewers to experience Milwaukee for themselves once the health criss abates, describing the city as a special place eagerly awaiting future visitors.

This story was written by Ryan Hagan. He can be reached at ryan.hagan@marquette.edu.