In an effort to downplay the chaos and division on display at the first day of the Democratic National Convention, on Tuesday’s NBC Today, correspondent Andrea Mitchell celebrated Monday night’s speech from Bernie Sanders as “everything Hillary Clinton could have wanted, an unqualified endorsement.”
The reporter gushed: “Passion and purpose at the Democratic National Convention. The night’s main speaker, Bernie Sanders, getting an emotional prolonged ovation.... Moving some of his followers to tears....After a raucous start, the most exciting moment of opening night...”
Turning to the address from the First Lady, Mitchell was gleeful: “And while Sanders closed the night throwing his support to his former adversary, it was Michelle Obama who stole the show, taking veiled shots at Donald Trump without mentioning his name....The First Lady delivering an emotional appeal to voters.”
Only at the end of the glowing report did Mitchell acknowledge the rancor plaguing the convention:
But throughout the day, Sanders supporters outraged over leaked e-mails showing party officials favored Clinton during the primaries, taking out their frustrations. Party chair Debbie Wasserman Shultz, who agreed to resign at the end of the week because of the scandal, booed off the stage at a breakfast with delegates from her home state of Florida. By afternoon, pressure to give up the convention gavel immediately.
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In a report at the top of the 8 a.m. ET hour, fellow correspondent Kristen Welker joined Mitchell in applauding Democratic gathering: “When Bill Clinton takes the stage here tonight, he’s expected to speak in very personal terms about his wife's record while trying to build on the momentum that capped a raucous first day here. All this, as Bernie Sanders delivered for Hillary Clinton with a full-throated call to support her.”
After briefly noting the DNC e-mail scandal, Welker assured viewers: “But for all of the discord in the city of brotherly love, there was also plenty of celebration....From Paul Simon to Philly favorites, Boys II Men, and Eva Longoria. But it was First Lady Michelle Obama who brought down the house, taking thin-veiled shots at Donald Trump....Reminding a divided party they were able to come together after a bruising battle eight years ago."
Wrapping up the segment, Welker touted Tuesday’s night program: “Now, in addition to Bill Clinton, mothers who’ve lost their children to gun violence are also expected to speak and they’ll serve as character witnesses for Clinton, who’s still struggling to rebuild the public's trust in her.”
Here is a full transcript of Mitchell’s July 26 report:
7:01 AM ET
SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: Day two of the Democratic National Convention. I'm here in Philadelphia with a few of my closest friends. Matt, I know you're back in the studio. We said it last week at the Republican convention, let's say it again. Who said conventions are boring and scripted?
MATT LAUER: Yeah, not at all. Day one's theme was “United Together” but from the sound of things, Savannah, at certain times last night, despite the speeches of Bernie Sanders and Michelle Obama, it felt like someone forgot to tell a couple of thousand people of the floor of that arena.
GUTHRIE: There was some work to do to unite this party, Matt, we’ll see if it got done. Also coming up, we’ll get House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi's take on the drama we’re seeing here in Philly, she joins us live. But first, let's get right to NBC’s Andrea Mitchell. She’s inside the Wells Fargo Center, the room were it happened last night. Andrea, good morning.
ANDREA MITCHELL: Good morning, Savannah. It was everything Hillary Clinton could have wanted, an unqualified endorsement from Bernie Sanders. The two former rivals even cooperating, trying to stop an all-out rebellion on the convention floor.
[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Drama at the Democratic Convention; Sanders Urges Angry Supporters to Unify Behind Clinton]
MITCHELL: Passion and purpose at the Democratic National Convention. The night’s main speaker, Bernie Sanders, getting an emotional prolonged ovation.
BERNIE SANDERS: Thank you!
MITCHELL: Moving some of his followers to tears.
SANDERS: Let me thank the 13 million Americans who voted for the political revolution.
MITCHELL: After a raucous start, the most exciting moment of opening night, Bernie Sanders at the Democratic convention, only the second one he’s ever attended.
SANDERS: Based on her ideas and her leadership, Hillary Clinton must become the next President of the United States.
MITCHELL: Backing his former rival and touting concessions she had made on the party platform.
SANDERS: We produced by far the most progressive platform in the history of the Democratic Party.
MITCHELL: And while Sanders closed the night throwing his support to his former adversary, it was Michelle Obama who stole the show, taking veiled shots at Donald Trump without mentioning his name.
MICHELLE OBAMA: The issues a president faces are not black and white and cannot be boiled down to 140 characters.
MITCHELL: The First Lady delivering an emotional appeal to voters.
OBAMA: And because of Hillary Clinton, my daughters, and all our sons and daughters, now take for granted that a woman can be President of the United States.
MITCHELL: Other Democratic stars, including Senators Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker, pushed for party unity. But throughout the day, Sanders supporters outraged over leaked e-mails showing party officials favored Clinton during the primaries, taking out their frustrations.
DEBBIE WASSERMAN SHULTZ: Alright, everybody, now settle down.
MITCHELL: Party chair Debbie Wasserman Shultz, who agreed to resign at the end of the week because of the scandal, booed off the stage at a breakfast with delegates from her home state of Florida. By afternoon, pressure to give up the convention gavel immediately. That honor going instead to Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, even though she forgot to officially bang the gavel.
Hours before his big speech, Sanders texted his supporters urging calm, “I ask you as a personal courtesy to me to not engage in any kind of protest on the floor.” Many did, then Sarah Silverman, a passionate Sanders supporter, ad-libbed her own message.
SARAH SILVERMAN: Can I just say to the Bernie or bust people, you’re being ridiculous.
MITCHELL: Donald Trump live-tweeting the Democrats, slamming Sanders for giving up his revolution. Sanders tweeting back, “Never tweet.” Savannah?
GUTHRIE: Alright, Andrea Mitchell, thank you so much.