US DNC postpones 2020 convention due to coronavirus pandemic

Democratic National Committee postpones the nominating convention from July to August 17.

    Two people wear face masks and gloves as a proactive prevention measure at a campaign event of Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders, at Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles [Damian Dovarganes/AP Photo]
    Two people wear face masks and gloves as a proactive prevention measure at a campaign event of Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders, at Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles [Damian Dovarganes/AP Photo]

    The United States Democratic National Committee (DNC) has postponed its nominating convention from July to August over the coronavirus pandemic, DNC officials said on Thursday.

    The convention will be held on August 17 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, about a week before the Republican Party's convention. 

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    "In our current climate of uncertainty, we believe the smartest approach is to take additional time to monitor how this situation unfolds so we can best position our party for a safe and successful convention," DNC CEO Joe Solmonese said in a statement. 

    The announcement came just days after former vice president and likely nominee Joe Biden called for the convention to be moved due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

    The coronavirus crisis has upended the 2020 election cycle, with more than a dozen states postponing primaries and campaigns moving online

    Questions surrounding the conventions have forced Democrats and Republicans to re-examine what the election might look like amid the global pandemic. 

    Biden, who was vice president under President Barack Obama, currently leads the Democratic nominating contest against his rival, Bernie Sanders, a US senator from Vermont.

    Republicans plan to gather from August 24 to 27 in Charlotte, North Carolina, for their nominating convention. 

    More than 217,000 people in the US have been infected with the novel coronavirus and more than 5,000 people have died due to the respiratory disease.

    New York has been hardest hit, with officials warning the peak may come in a week to 30 days. But cities and towns elsewhere in the US are bracing for their own surges in cases. 

    White House medical experts have forecast that even if Americans hunker down in their homes to slow the spread of COVID-19, some 100,000 to 240,000 people could die from the disease.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera News