Here’s Why AOC’s Sanders Nomination Was Standard Procedure

Alexandria - Ocasio-Cortez - Election 2020 DNC

Image via Brian Snyder/Pool via AP

By Mivette Vega

August 19, 2020

An expert explains why the New York congresswoman did not mention Joe Biden in her 90-second speech.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’ nomination of Bernie Sanders for president of the United States during the Democratic National Convention (DNC) Tuesday night caused some confusion.

The New York congresswoman did not mention presidential candidate Joe Biden on the night designated for his official nomination. 

RELATED: Calm Down: AOC Was at the DNC to Nominate Sanders But She’s Supporting Biden

In her 90-second speech, Ocasio-Cortez highlighted the Democratic Party‘s ideals and the progressive movement within it that she represents. 

“A movement is striving to recognize and repair the wounds of racial injustice, colonization, misogyny, and homophobia,” the Bronx-born congresswoman said, in a speech that included a few words in Spanish.

Ocasio-Cortez also addressed proposals for building systems of immigration and foreign policy, guaranteed health care, and higher education.

“A movement that realizes the unsustainable brutality of an economy that rewards the explosive inequalities of wealth for the few at the expense of long-term stability for the many,” the rising star of the Democratic Party added.

After going over her points, Ocasio-Cortez proceeded to second the nomination of Sen. Bernie Sanders, causing confusion on social media. This, in turn, prompted the congresswoman to tweet her support for Biden.

The confusion even spread to news organizations like NBC, that had to release a statement clarifying their previous reports.

The Standard Procedure of Roll Call

Eduardo A. Gamarra, Ph.D., professor of the Department of Politics and International Relations at Florida International University (FIU) in Miami, explained how Ocasio-Cortez’ nomination of Sen. Sanders is standard procedure within the DNC. 

Sanders’ nomination had to happen because:

  • Originally, the Democratic Party had 27 presidential candidates running for the 2020 elections. “Each one of them had to count with the support of 1,900 delegates to be nominated,” Gamarra explained.
  • In the process, the candidates went through an elimination process. In June, Joe Biden already had the support of 1,992 delegates.
  • When the convention takes place in person, all of the delegates are present at the event location, which makes the dynamics of protocol clearer. “The delegates are usually there with their hats and flags,” Gamarra said. “For example, California would say they have this number of delegates for Biden and this number of delegates for Sanders. Last night, obviously because of the pandemic, the convention was virtual, and it was interesting to see how the party solved the situation.”
  • The DNC includes a procedure of nomination in which two people are supposed to represent the candidacy of Sanders. Before Ocasio-Cortez, Bob King, former president of United Auto Workers, was the first to officially nominate Sanders on Tuesday. “It is an absolutely formal thing because you have to respect the 700-odd delegates who had supported Sanders,” Gamarra said.
  • This procedure does not imply that the congresswoman does not support Biden. “People are interpreting it that way, but that’s not what it means,” Gamarra said.
  • Gamarra said Ocasio-Cortez’ tweet to show support for Biden and clarify her speech was a good move. “In the long run, she is going to be an important person in the party,” he said. “She already is.”


CATEGORIES: Elections | National | Voting


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