Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton told the audience tuning in to the virtual Democratic National Convention on Aug. 19 that the lives, health, and jobs of Americans are on the line in the 2020 election.
Clinton urged Americans to vote for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.). She also criticized President Donald Trump, saying that “America needs a better president than this.”
“Remember in 2016 when Trump asked: ‘What do you have to lose?’ Well, now we know: our health, our jobs, even our lives. Our leadership in the world and, yes, our post office. As Michelle Obama and Bernie Sanders warned us on Monday: If Trump is re-elected, it will get even worse,” Clinton, who lost the presidential race to Trump in 2016, said.
“Vote like our lives and livelihoods are on the line, because they are,” Clinton said later in the speech.
The Democrats nominated Biden on Aug. 18 to represent the party in the presidential race. Biden is expected to speak on Thursday, the closing night of the convention.
Clinton delivered the speech on a night packed with the biggest names in American politics. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) spoke shortly after and former President Barack Obama was scheduled to deliver the closing address.
Clinton, who lost the electoral college to Trump but won the popular vote, encouraged citizens to vote early and to encourage others to do the same.
“Remember: Joe and Kamala can win 3 million more votes and still lose. Take it from me. We need numbers so overwhelming Trump can’t sneak or steal his way to victory,” Clinton said.
The Trump campaign responded to the speech by pointing out that Clinton “failed to visit Wisconsin and lost fair and square in 2016.”
“President Trump is cleaning up the mess caused by Biden and Clinton by bringing jobs back to the U.S., instituting an America First foreign policy, and taking on China,” the Trump campaign said in a statement. “He created the best economy in American history before the virus from China hit us, and he will do it again. President Trump is succeeding where Biden and Clinton failed.”
Clinton pivoted the speech away from defeating Trump by running down a list of issues and policy proposals, including universal healthcare, paid family leave, reproductive rights, and the environment.
Clinton also suggested that voting for Biden would ensure that foreign adversaries would not be the ones choosing America’s president—an apparent reference to the Russia collusion narrative which roiled the nation for more than three years.
“Vote to make sure we—not a foreign adversary—choose our president,” Clinton said.
Special counsel Robert Mueller concluded his 22-month investigation last year, finding no evidence of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. The day before Clinton’s speech, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence completed a three-year investigation and reaffirmed that the FBI used a dossier funded by the Clinton campaign to obtain a warrant to spy on a former Trump campaign advisor.
“She refused to accept the results of the election and even said President Trump was an illegitimate president, doing the Kremlin’s bidding by undermining our democracy and sowing division,” the Trump campaign said in a statement.