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As Dems Look For Unity In Philly, Colorado Still Leans For Bernie

Bernie Sanders speaks to the Democratic National Convention on day 1, July 25, 2016. Other speakers included First Lady Michelle Obama and Sen. Elizabeth Warren.
Chris Frommann
Bernie Sanders speaks to the Democratic National Convention on day 1, July 25, 2016. Other speakers included First Lady Michelle Obama and Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

The Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia got off to a rocky start. Supporters of Bernie Sanders repeatedly booed speakers and even Sanders himself, when he urged his backers to support Hillary Clinton.

Some of the consternation came from Colorado's delegates, where Sanders won the caucuses.

"I'm a Bernie person all the way," said Cleo Dioletis, a delegate from Denver. "In my mind, I have to support a strong candidate who is ethically correct."

Dioletis, who said she would not vote for Clinton in November, is even more adamant in light of leaked emails from that Democratic National Committee. The email showed chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz saying disparaging things about Sanders and working to try and bolster Clinton's campaign.

"The Democratic party cheated and lied," Dioletis said.

Wasserman Schultz resigned over the emails and isn't presiding over the convention. She was slated to gavel the convention to order but stepped down after it was clear how bad the optics would look on opening day.

State representative Jonathon Singer (D-Longmont), another Sanders delegate, said the Clinton campaign needs to try to embrace Bernie supports, many who are young and new to the political process.

"If Hillary can really show that they're paying attention and that they're listening and they're invested," Singer said.

The catch however, is that Singer is not happy with the selection of Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine as Clinton's running mate.

"He's going to have a long way to with progressives to really prove he's going to do the things the progressives want."

Sanders supporters can point to some victories though. They successfully changed the Democratic Party rules to greatly reduce the number of super delegates going forward. Key to Clinton's support base, super delegates are party insiders and elected officials who many Sanders supporters feel don't speak for the people.

Other Democrats expect all these differences to fade come fall and predict the party's more progressive supporters will back Clinton to defeat Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump.

Read More: Sanders Closes A Night Of Disunity By Encouraging Support For Clinton

Copyright 2021 KUNC. To see more, visit KUNC.

Bente Birkeland
Bente Birkeland has been reporting on state legislative issues for KUNC and Rocky Mountain Community Radio since 2006. Originally, from Minnesota, Bente likes to hike and ski in her spare time. She keeps track of state politics throughout the year but is especially busy during the annual legislative session from January through early May.
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