As conventions fade away, what sticks with us are the one-liners.
Few can hope to achieve the immortality of Democratic convention GOAT Ann Richards, who in 1988 was the state treasurer of Texas, a state she’d go on to lead as governor. Her takedown of the gaffe-prone George H.W. Bush didn’t halt his rise to the White House, but it still burns a generation later: “Poor George. He can’t help it,” Richards said with a beguiling smile. “He was born with a silver foot in his mouth.”
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This past week offered more than its share of pithy and biting jokes, gags, insults and warnings. The socially distanced format meant there was no live crowd of Democratic partisans to chortle, cheer and hoot in real time — just a captive audience of Americans, quarantined at home, tweeting, “Oh snap!”
Presented below, the top seven one-liners of the 2020 Democratic convention.
1) Kristin Urquiza
Kristin Urquiza is not a politican. She lost her father to the covid-19 pandemic because he listened to the president and refused to wear a mask in his home state of Arizona. In a video testimonial, Urquiza told the convention:
“My dad was a healthy 65-year-old. His only pre-existing condition was trusting Donald Trump, and for that he paid with his life.”
Kristin Urquiza speaks about her father who died from COVID-19: "My dad was a healthy 65-year-old. His only pre-existing condition was trusting Donald Trump, and for that, he paid with his life." #DemConvention pic.twitter.com/NpyHCvSnpM
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) August 18, 2020
In her address to the convention, the vice presidential nominee tied her work as a prosecutor to the impeached Republican in the White House. “I’ve fought for children and survivors of sexual assault. I’ve fought against transnational gangs. I took on the biggest banks and helped take down one of the biggest for-profit colleges,” Harris said before waiting a beat and staring directly into the camera:
“I know a predator when I see one.”
The Vermont senator — the last rival standing to Joe Biden on the way to the convention — used his platform to drag President Trump as an incompetent authoritarian, whose disastrous mismanagement of the pandemic has left more than 170,000 Americans dead.
“Nero fiddled while Rome burned,” Sanders said. “Trump golfs.”
4) Julia Louis-Dreyfus
The Veep star emceed the last night of the convention. Some of her one liners about Trump fell flat, but one joke targeting a monster of Silicon Valley hit different. She quietly lumped Mark Zuckerberg’s company in with a sinister authoritarian trinity.
“If we all vote,” she said, “there’s nothing Facebook, Fox News and Vladimir Putin can do to stop us.”
— The Hill (@thehill) August 21, 2020
5) Hillary Clinton
The winner of the 2016 popular vote popped in with a painful reminder about the need to trounce Trump so soundly the Electoral College can’t undo the will of the people:
“Joe and Kamala can win by 3 million votes and still lose,” Clinton said. “Take it from me.”
“Don't forget, Joe and Kamala can win by 3 million votes and still lose. Take it from me. So we need numbers overwhelming, so Trump can't sneak or steal his way to victory,” Hillary Clinton said during the #DemConvention. https://t.co/OIulB4wXds pic.twitter.com/FeGoj1ptII
— CNN (@CNN) August 20, 2020
6) Barack Obama
The former president’s speech was a stark warning to not let the trainwreck of the Trump administration breed cynicism and spur disengagement from politics. “That’s how a democracy withers, until it’s no democracy at all. We can’t let that happen,” Obama said.
“Do not let them take away your power. Don’t let them take away your democracy.”
The former first lady threw the words president Trump used to describe the nation’s covid death count back in his face, while excoriating the president’s lack of leadership.
“Donald Trump is the wrong president for our country. He has had more than enough time to prove that he can do the job, but he is clearly in over his head. He cannot meet this moment. He simply cannot be who we need him to be for us,” she said. “It is what it is.”
“Donald Trump is the wrong President for our country…….. it is what it is”
-Michelle Obama pic.twitter.com/PLMX8A0hPI
— 💫✨ (@TheJessieWoo) August 18, 2020
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