For the second time in the past five presidential election seasons, the City of Philadelphia will be showcased nationally as the host of a major party convention. In 2000, the Republican National Convention came to town and nominated future President George W. Bush.
This year, from Monday, July 25, to Thursday, July 28, Philadelphia welcomes the Democratic National Convention (DNC), which will nominate former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Accordant with the DNC, Penn is educating and engaging policymakers, political correspondents, comedians, and the general public through a series of DNC-related events.
From July 26-29, “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah” will tape four episodes at the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. Tickets are sold out, but the episodes can be viewed nightly on Comedy Central.
Penn’s Fels Institute of Government, as an official sponsor of both the DNC and PoliticalFest, the DNC’s political entertainment festival, is playing an active role during convention week, in keeping with the Institute’s mission to advance the quality of public leadership.
“In a year where the political process has captured the attention of our country like never before, we are proud to bring the resources and expertise of the Fels Institute to help engage the public,” says Fels Executive Director Nelson Lim.
Fels will host a private luncheon for media and invited delegates on the topic of 21st Century policing reform at the Philadelphia Free Library on July 26, which will feature a panel discussion with mayors and police commissioners from around the country and a keynote address by former Attorney General Eric Holder.
Fels will also host two festival-long events at the Constitution Center: Political Feud, an opinion-based question game for members of the public; and Political Trivia, which pits teams of news correspondents and delegates in friendly competition to answer trivia questions developed by Fels students and Associate Professor of Political Science Marc Meredith.
Additionally, the Fels Policy Research Initiative is hosting a panel conversation on Wednesday, July 27, at 9 a.m. in the 4th floor forum of Fisher Fine Arts Library with Congressman Dan Kildee of Flint, Mich.; Marilyn Howarth of Penn’s Center of Excellence in Environmental Toxicology; and Oliver Milman, environmental reporter for The Guardian. The event is free, but space is limited and registration is required.
DNC-related events scheduled for Penn’s newly-constructed Perry World House include a panel discussion on July 27 with former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright; former USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah; Iraq War vet and Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA), and former Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman. On July 28, Perry World House and The Wall Street Journal will co-host a breakfast and conversation between Gerard Baker, editor in chief, and Gerald Seib, Washington bureau chief, about the state of the 2016 election and its impact on the global economy.
Laurie Jensen, program coordinator at Perry World House, says the events will serve as a soft opening for the new building, which will be officially fêted with a grand opening in September.
“Perry World House’s mission is to join together policymakers and Penn faculty on issues of global urgency, and the DNC provides the perfect venue for this type of collaboration,” she says.