I want to share with my community the following essay by Charlie Gerow on the 2020 Republican National Convention. Charlie brings a unique perspective to this unprecedented virtual event as he has attended every Republican National Convention starting in 1980:
The nation’s first virtual convention is now in the history books.
The Democrats faced the same daunting challenge the Republicans now face as they roll into their quadrennial conclave: how do you possibly make a two-hour Zoom meeting interesting?
Without the hoopla, funny hats, noisemakers and floor demonstrations we’ve come to associate with party nominating conventions, a lengthy infomercial is a tough way to hold anybody’s attention.
That problem was certainly borne out by the Nielsen ratings for the first nights of the Democrat’s convention. The second night drew a broadcast audience of only 6.3 million, down 48 percent from the second night of their last convention. They fared little better on opening night when they were down 42 percent from four years ago.
The speeches appeared exactly what they were: highly polished, well-rehearsed and carefully scripted snippets delivered by the party’s top marquis stars. But they lacked the authenticity of live speeches delivered in front of an audience.
The themes were not surprising. The far Left doesn’t like Donald Trump. That’s hardly shocking news. But there wasn’t any meaningful insight into what a Biden Administration would actually do. The party platform was kept well under wraps.
That’s because the convention managers knew that if the views of Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Cortez and Elizabeth Warren, which are fully encapsulated in the Democrat platform, were the centerpiece of the convention or the campaign they lose.
Yet there was Bernie Sanders bragging that his ideas that were considered “radical” just four years ago are now “mainstream.”
That’s ‘mainstream’ of the delegates to the Democrat National Convention maybe, but certainly not to Main Street America.
The Democrats only gave AOC one minute. She didn’t manage to cram any mention of the party’s nominee into her 60 seconds before seconding the nomination of another self-proclaimed socialist.
For most of the week there was only one over-arching theme: the national Democrats view that Donald Trump is evil and the Republic is in dire straits. They even tried to convince us that they’re-pandemic economy was no good despite a mountain of evidence to the contrary.
Finally Thursday night rolled around. It was the biggest night of Joe Biden’s political life.
During the day President Trump headed to Old Forge, just a few miles from where Joe Biden was born.
There he laid out a preview of the attractions coming next week with a bill of particulars against the radical left’s agenda and their candidate, Joe Biden.
My on-air colleague said that it was inappropriate for an opponent to step on the other candidate’s big night. He has a historical point. But here’s putting even odds that the Trump team would love for Joe Biden to try the same thing next week.
But he won’t. He’ll be back in his basement hoping that he can hold on to his shrinking lead and happy with his performance on Thursday night.
That performance was enhanced by the exceedingly low bar the Trump campaign and even the media had set. As long as Joe Biden didn’t flub it up, he’d be declared a winner for the night.
Reading off the screen pretty much guaranteed that. He sounded good. He didn’t forget the words to the Declaration of
Independence as he did the last time he tried without it being written down for him.
But much like the Nixon-Kennedy debate of 60 years ago, what people saw may have been different from what they heard. Biden may have sounded good and not made any of his trademark gaffes. But he looked, well, old, and the fact that he is now the oldest major party nominee in history was subliminally reinforced.
As he concluded there was no deafening crescendo of cheering from delegates crammed to the rafters, no balloon drops or confetti guns. It all ended pretty quietly. The fireworks were a nice touch, but that was about it.
Joe Biden didn’t fumble any of his reading from the teleprompter. He may have looked tired, but he made it through it. Democrat stage managers and consultants breathed a sigh of relief as the always reliable media began to heap praise on a “great speech.”
The first unconventional convention was over. Now it’s the Republicans turn. Then the real fun begins.
Charlie Gerow is a Republican strategist and CEO of Quantum Communications.