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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT
Opening Night of Convention Under Way; Awaiting Speeches From Michelle Obama, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired July 25, 2016 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[18:59:55] BAKARI SELLERS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: And I think as the night progresses, I think the biggest speech of the night. Although Bernie Sanders is important and Elizabeth Warren is important, the biggest feature of the night belongs to Michelle Obama. Because there are a lot of people you can boo. But one person you ain't going to boo is Michelle Obama.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: Dan, what's the most important speech tonight?
DAN PFEIFFER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I agree that the First Lady is probably the most important in terms of motivating the voters and a person who can make a very strong case for Hillary Clinton, to motivate. Now, the Obama coalition, women voters have their African- American voters. I think in terms of getting the loud, very small minority of folks who have been booing here and causing trouble here, Bernie Sanders has a big role to play. And he seems very prepared to do that.
BURNETT: And that we are getting ready for John Podesta. Obviously, this is a big kick-off here this hour, the campaign chairman, 67 years old, has known Hillary Clinton for more than 20 years, worked with Barack Obama in the White House. Worked with Bill Clinton in the White House. Chief of staff for some crucial years. And obviously, this is going to be -- here he is, coming on out. Let's listen to John Podesta with his crucial speech here, the campaign chair.
JOHN PODESTA, CLINTON CAMPAIGN CHAIR: Hello, Democrats! I want to begin by saying thank you to all of you across the country who have volunteered your time, donated what you could. Signed off at HillaryClinton.com. You have voted to make Hillary Clinton the nominee of the Democratic Party. This is your victory!
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
And to everyone who supported Senator Sanders, this is your victory, too! I've known Bernie since I was a young staffer for Senator Pat Leahy and he was mayor of Burlington. He stood up to the special interests and fought to give working people a fair economy and a bigger say. And those are the same values that he brought to this campaign and our party and our country are better for it. Donald Trump has different values. He built his career by ripping people off, stiffing contractors and skipping out on his bills through bankruptcy. He is too erratic, dangerous and divisive trust to the White House.
You know, I am a fortunate grandson of Italian and Greek immigrants with a blue collar dad and a pink collar mom, I've had the honor to serve two great presidents who fought for working people and met the challenges of their time. Now, like all of you, I'm working to elect a president who has the experience, vision, values and grit to make progress in these turbulent times. That person is Hillary Clinton.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
Hillary will be a president who gets results. She'll take on powerful special interests in a rigged system to make our economy work for everyone, not just those at the top. And she will be a champion for our children and our families. With your hard work, we can build a better future for everyone. Steelworkers and school teachers, farm families and military families, the forgotten middle class and those who have been left out and left behind. And immigrants. People like my family and yours, who struggle to get here, who built this country and who love America.
That's who we're fighting for. That's who this election is about. That's why she picked Tim Kaine as her running mate, a man with a deep heart and a passion for service. And if we work overtime, work overtime for the next 105 days, we will succeed in making history and elect the first woman president of the United States! Thank you.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
BURNETT: That was John Podesta, the Clinton campaign chairman. I'm back here with my panel. David, we did get the cheers there, Tim Kaine, Hillary Clinton. You got the cheers on this floor.
DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: They did. (INAUDIBLE). We're going to hear a lot of contrast. From tonight maybe the night where we hear it the most.
BURNETT: And not afraid to be critical of Trump, Kayleigh. He was coming out erratic and dangerous. Those are the sorts of words we're going to hear tonight. I would imagine they will pale in comparison to the words we hear from Elizabeth Warren later on tonight.
KAYLEIGH MCENANY, DONALD TRUMP SUPPORTER: Oh, certainly. We will definitely hear attacks from Elizabeth Warren. We've seen video after video attacking Donald Trump, and he really sheds I guess some questions on Hillary Clinton's interview on "60 Minutes" where she tries to paint herself as a positive figure who is not willing to attack Trump. Well, every single surrogate on the stage is attacking him repeatedly. So, I suspect we will hear that going forward.
BURNETT: And Bakari, you know, again, that's one of the things that stood out last week, it was about attacking Hillary Clinton not being for Donald Trump. Are we going to see that as much tonight? There's more criticizing Trump than for her?
SELLERS: I think you will see people attack Donald Trump's xenophobic rhetoric. I think you'll see people attack his record on Trump University, that thousands of lawsuits, that his business practices, those types of things. What you won't have are the chants of "lock her up" from the floor. You won't have a lot of the foul language that may have been seen on signs and posters throughout the arena last week.
In fact, I think that and I would encourage Democrats, and I think you would agree with me that after tonight, after you have Bernie Sanders and after you have Elizabeth Warren to pivot, to start talking about the new days in America. And I think that we need to steel a mantra from Ronald Reagan. It's morning in America again, to kind of paint that clear contrast between what Donald Trump was last week.
[19:05:46] BURNETT: Dan, the bar is very, very high for her. Our poll this morning had her coming into this convention. And she's going to hope for a convention bump. But with the most highest unfavorables since we started doing that poll question here at CNN, the bar is high.
PFEIFFER: Well, she should be very grateful she's running against Donald Trump. But I think it's very important that we, like polling between conventions is useless. If we believe the polling in the conventions, John McCain and Mitt Romney would both be president of the United States. They both get big -- instead of theirs and they went back.
BURNETT: But Dan, I know it's significant because this is the first post-convention bounce we've seen in nearly two decades. This is an astonishing bounds --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's right.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's absolutely not true.
BURNETT: Since 2000, yes, it is. It is the first six-point convention bounce we have seen since 2000. The numbers say that, go read CNN's articles. They say that. So, that is the truth.
PFEIFFER: John McCain had a five-point lead on Barack Obama and lost that election side like seven points in a massive electoral side. Like if it gives you false hope in this week period of time, that's great. But it didn't mean anything before and it doesn't mean anything right now.
MCENANY: It is true on favorability, on terrorism, on who is be able to handle the economy on public image. He bounced on nearly 15 metrics. On the CBS swing state poll, likewise, he bounced. It means something when something is happening that hasn't happened since the year 2000.
BURNETT: And David, the big question though is going to be Independents, because coming out of the Republican convention, that's where we saw the big swing. They swing significantly towards Donald Trump. She needs to get those back.
CHALIAN: This is a bounce. That's what this is. What we don't know is that when Hillary Clinton gets her bounce, where does the race settle down --
BURNETT: Do you just go back to where you were before?
CHALIAN: -- after the convention. So, there's no doubt that we'll continue to look at that after Hillary Clinton has the opportunity how to -- bounce. I do think, though, that what we were just discussing before here about the importance of -- and what you're going to hear and the balance, I don't think you're going to -- yes, you're going to hear as you heard from some surrogates Trump contrast and Trump attacks.
The Clinton campaign is also very eager, because of the unfavorable and they get that. To put Hillary Clinton out there as somebody who understands the economic pain. They don't want Donald Trump to be the only person in this race that gets to own the anger vote. They want her to be able to tap into that not in the same way, but in a way that expresses that she understands economic frustration.
BURNETT: And that is Bernie Sanders' job tonight.
SELLERS: Correct. But in just the kind of, to quickly talk about that bounce again. If we go back to 2000, I believe it was George Bush after his convention had an eight-point bounce.
SELLERS: But then we saw Al Gore have an eight point bound, and so they kind of neutralized each other. So, with all of that being said you brought up the point of Senator Bernie Sanders. His speech tonight, I think I was listening to reports that he was still writing it at 6:00 p.m. This speech is his. This is his and his alone. And I expect a lot of fireworks from him today, talking about the issues that were talked about earlier today on a platform. But does again, this is the most progressives platform that the Democratic Party has had and Bernie Sanders is responsible for that platform.
BURNETT: And yet, Dan, I was talking to one Bernie Sanders' supporter that said he's worried that when Bernie Sanders comes with his full- throated endorsement that there could be boos from this crowd.
PFEIFFER: I think that's going to be likely to happen here. I think where you've heard boos here is when it's time it's been quiet. When the loud, very fired (INAUDIBLE). When he comes out in this crowd, people are going to cheer. There is a fired up. Bernie Sanders approval ratings among Hillary Clinton supporters are incredibly high. I would be very surprised to hear that.
BURNETT: And of course, even if you do have boos, David, it is not in any way a Ted Cruz moment. And he is upping his endorsement of her tonight, whatever he needs to do to have people get on board.
CHALIAN: That's the difference. Now, we do have to acknowledge. Bernie Sanders does not have complete control of Bernie Sanders supporters.
BURNETT: No. CHALIAN: I mean, it just doesn't translate that way. He's doing his piece, every bit he can right now. So, you were right, and I think he will amp it up and accelerating it to try to bring them aboard. But they -- there are some die-hard Bernie Sanders supporters that don't want to hear that.
BURNETT: And the next speaker is going to be Linda Sanchez. Congresswoman from California, chair of the Congressional Hispanic caucus. A lot of people speaking Spanish today.
SELLERS: Well, yes. I mean, this party is a big tent party. I mean, this is not anything that we do that's patronizing, it's not anything that we do just to try to woo voters. That is who we are and --
BURNETT: And here she is. Let's listen.
REP. LINDA SANCHEZ (D), CALIFORNIA: -- To nominate Hillary Clinton, the next president and Tim Kaine, the next vice president of the United States.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
[19:10:12] I want to share a little bit of my story because it's an American story. It's the sorry of millions of Latinos and Latinas across this country. I'm the daughter of immigrant parents from Mexico. They came to this country and worked hard every day to provide for me and my brothers and sisters. My father, Ignacio, was an industrial mechanic. And my mother, Maria, became an elementary school teacher after raising a family. They owned their own home. They sent all seven of their children to college.
My mother and father saved and sacrificed to achieve the American dream for our family. They weren't given their success. They earned it. Donald Trump believes that Mexican immigrants are murderers and rapists. But what about my parents, Donald? Let me tell you what my parents are. They are the only parents in our nation's 265-year history to send not one, but two daughters to the United States Congress.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
Like my parents, Hillary Clinton believes the United States is a country where people of all backgrounds can make a home and a better life. But that America isn't possible if we allow Donald Trump and his Republican Party to build a wall that divides us. I stand here tonight as the chair of the Congressional Hispanic caucus and a proud congresswoman from California, but most importantly, I'm here as a mom. We all want what's best for our kids.
We want our children to grow up to be healthy, successful and kindhearted. Our job is to nurture them, and be good role models for them to follow as they grow. Now, I will be the first to tell you that being a parent is hard. But Donald Trump is making it a whole lot harder. He has taken the low road time and time again. He has been vulgar and he has been intolerant. Or as we say in Spanish -- (SPEAKING SPANISH).
He peddles fear and insecurity to divide the people of this great country. Tell me what kind of example would we set for our children by allowing a bully to sit in the Oval Office? We know that our children aren't born with hate or racism in their hearts. They learn it from watching the world around them and following the example of the adults in their life. Too many of our children and watching and learning the wrong lessons from Donald Trump.
We've seen it at an Indiana basketball game where a group of white students started chanting "Build that wall" to players from a predominantly Hispanic high school. This is the behavior that Donald Trump inspires in our youth. A Trump presidency would be a signal to our children that we condone this kind of behavior. Well, that is a message I refuse to accept. Who we vote for says a lot about our values. There are few moments in history that have an impact on the trajectory of the world. And I believe that this election is one of those moments.
Our children are watching us. Their future depends on the outcome of this race. Do we want a responsible leader or a loud-mouthed bully? Do we want a president who respects women or who calls them names and devalues them? Do we want a president who appreciates the contributions immigrants make to our country or someone who vilifies them? Hillary Clinton is the only choice for president. She is a president we can be proud of.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
And, Donald, let me just say this. America is great. It is the country that gave my family the opportunity for a better life just like all immigrants who came before them. It is because of our diversity that we are the envy of the world.
[19:15:24] Like I said in the video, Hillary Clinton is bad ass and ready to lead. Let's win in November!
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
BURNETT: And you could see there. Linda Sanchez, congresswoman, finishing her speech. David, a very effective. Many things effective in there. But among them when she brought her sister out and she kept referring to Donald Trump personally. Well, Donald. Well, Donald.
CHALIAN: Right. She did. And she referenced Donald Trump's comments from the day he launched his campaign for the presidency, when he went down the escalator that day in Trump Tower and talked about Mexicans and she put that front and center. We're hearing lots about Donald Trump snippets throughout this convention. And they all try to put her into her in the --
BURNETT: All right. And now, mayor of Boston, Marty Walsh, she's going to be coming out and speaking. He's coming out right now. Let's listen to Mayor Marty Walsh, Boston.
MAYOR MARTY WALSH (D), BOSTON: Good evening. Good evening. Thank you, Massachusetts. Thank you.
(CROWD CHANTING "MARTY, MARTY, MARTY, MARTY, MARTY")
Good evening delegates. My name is Marty Walsh and I'm an alcoholic. On April 23rd, 1995, I hit rock bottom. I woke up with little memory of the night before and even less hope for the days to come. Everybody was losing faith in me. Everybody except my family and the labor movement.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
I followed my father into the Building Trades when I was 18-years-old. Labor gave my immigrant family a chance in the labor community got me the help I needed and gave me a second chance.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
Eighteen years later, I became the mayor of Boston, a city of big dreams and a big heart. As mayor, I work to give everyone a fair shot and a second chance. Whether it's apprenticeships, free community college or help starting a business. There's no doubt in my mind that Hillary Clinton is the champion American workers need.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
She will help workers get the skills, the jobs and the child care they need to support strong families. She believes in an America that's not just for those with advantages. She believes in an America for those who need a helping hand, people struggling with addiction, moms working two jobs, students in debt, seniors struggling to retire. Workers facing layoffs and people like the carpenters and electrician Donald Trump hired but then refused to pay just because he did.
We may not have our names in gold outside any buildings that we've worked on. But our sweat, our work, our pride is on the inside of every single one of them. Hillary Clinton knows that. She believes what I learned in my labor family, we are stronger together. This is our choice. Are we going to let Donald Trump stiff the working families so he can make more for himself and the people at the top or are we going to stick together and build an economy that works for everybody in America?
I know where I stand. I stand with the women and men of every race, creed, color who built this country. And I stand as a living example of Hillary Clinton's vision for an America where everyone gets a fair shot and a second chance to achieve their dreams. That's the America I believe in. That's the America I've lived. And that's why America's working people are going to vote and elect Hillary Clinton our next president. I want to thank you and God bless the United States of America.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
BURNETT: Passionate, well received speech from Marty Walsh, the mayor of Boston.
[19:20:03] Coming up OUTFRONT, Bernie Sanders speaking to 1900 very vocal delegates in this arena tonight. A crucial speech as we count down to that. Can he get his supporters on board for Hillary Clinton? We'll be right back.
[19:24:14] BURNETT: Intensity building here in the convention hall in Philadelphia at this hour. We are back live at the Democratic convention, looking ahead to the big three speakers of the night, Senator Elizabeth Warren, First Lady Michelle Obama and Bernie Sanders. Nearly 2,000 delegates than he wants during a long and primary fight with Hillary Clinton all in this room tonight. The emotion is high.
And I want to go straight to our reporters, we got Dana Bash, Pamela Brown, Jeff Zeleny. All have been looking at this crucial part of the story. And Dana, one of the biggest issues here when we look at this is 44 percent of Democratic voters said they wanted Bernie Sanders and not Hillary Clinton.
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right.
BURNETT: And you see that sort of split reflected here on the delegate floor.
BASH: That's absolutely right. A week ago, the question among Cruz delegates was whether or not they would unite behind Donald Trump. And for the most part, the answer was yes. And they wanted to hear Ted Cruz endorse Donald Trump. Here, what we're hearing from Bernie Sanders all across the floor from states all across the country, that they want Bernie Sanders to tell them why it's important for them to get behind Hillary Clinton, because so many of them are not behind her.
And I'll show you right here is the California delegation up there. They're sort of up in the stands. And they are perhaps the most boisterous so far. Because they are very divided on the question of whether or not they can get behind Hillary Clinton.
BURNETT: You're looking at the California delegation, as Dana was speaking of it. Of course we've got one of the heads of the labor union speaking here. Cheers for that right now. Pam Brown, they are fighting back those. Bernie Sanders has people on the floor, right? To try to go ambassadors as we've been calling them to try to make sure that there is no scene tonight?
PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right. Ambassadors that have been working with the Bernie Sanders' campaign, that are quietly working the floor, the various delegations, trying to keep the calm. Dana mentioned the boisterous California delegation. We spoke to an ambassador in that delegation, he says he has been talking to the Bernie Sanders supporters who are upset about the e-mails, upset about Tim Kaine being picked as Hillary Clinton's vice president. And feel like justice wasn't served.
And the message he's giving to those supporters is that look, in this past year the Bernie Sanders movement has made a lot of headway, we've moved Hillary Clinton more to the left when it comes to, you know, minimum wage, when it comes to trade, when it comes to Wall Street. So we have made a lot of progress here. And you're going to hear a unifying message from Bernie Sanders tonight. Back to you.
BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Pamela. And you see some of those TPP signs, no TPP on this floor. Obviously those are your Bernie Sanders supporters. Hillary Clinton, of course, was very much for the TPP. Now following Bernie Sanders and opposing it.
Jeff Zeleny, the other of course, big speech tonight. Someone who opposes a lot of these things, is going to be Elizabeth Warren in that crucial prime time slot tonight.
JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: No doubt, Erin. And Clinton advisers believe if there's anyone who can turn this room around, they believe it is Elizabeth Warren. I am up on the podium here. She will be speaking just in front of me to my right. And I can tell you, from this vantage point there are about -- sometimes it looks like an equal number of Bernie signs and Clinton signs. But tonight the Clinton advisers believe that it is Elizabeth Warren and her message that can be uniquely tailored to this group. Because she arguably had never dog in the fight. For more than a year, she stayed on the sidelines, in many respects increased her value and respected them. So Elizabeth Warren key to watch tonight -- Erin.
BURNETT: Jeff Zeleny, thank you very much.
And ahead, the Democrats has some serious star power tonight. First Lady Michelle Obama going to be speaking on that stage and some a-list entertainers performing including Demi Lovato at this hour.
[19:31:49] BURNETT: We are back with a special edition of OUTFRONT, looking ahead to tonight's crucial primetime speakers, Senator Bernie Sanders on that list. Elizabeth Warren on that list, reaching out to progressives in the party. Obviously, very, very crucial. They are getting their chance to have their full say.
And in just a couple of moments, another of the big themes tonight, which is the substance abuse pandemic in this country, a woman who Hillary Clinton met on the campaign trail is going to be speaking, talking about that personal connection they had as well as the crisis, Demi Lovato, the pop star, going to be speaking and performing, talking about her personal crisis with addiction.
Dan, this is a very crucial part of this program. They are devoting a significant amount of time to it. We're going to see a video in a few moments. This is something that Hillary believes is very important to be -- again, a significant part of her first night at the convention. PFEIFFER: Right. This is not a political issue in the sense she's
going to win an election on this. This is something that she has been moved by, especially New Hampshire, a state that's been dramatically affected by this. The hope is that in the long run you can take advantage of this platform and send the message to the country and get something done when she's president. She's got to address the question.
BURNETT: David, this is something that does touch a lot of Americans. You take a look at the statistics, they are stunning. One baby born addicted every 19 minutes in this country in New Hampshire, as Dan mentioned. You're going to see the senator speak tonight here as well. You have half of the people in that state say they know something who is suffering from an opioid type addiction.
CHALIAN: Erin, speaking to the most amazing findings, you know, we sent embeds, an embed reporter up to New Hampshire early on to start covering the New Hampshire primary. There is a crisis going on here, every candidate is talking about it, Republican, Democrat. You couldn't go to an event in New Hampshire during the primary this year where there was not the issue.
And when Hillary Clinton went to New Hampshire and met this woman who is going to speak tonight, this became a campaign issue after that. Not just in New Hampshire. She took it all over the country.
Jeb Bush was talking about this and Chris Christie was talking about this. This was just across party lines, the state that these candidates spent so much time in it. They felt the need to address it.
BURNETT: They did. And Donald Trump addressed it, Kayleigh, but Hillary Clinton tonight is dedicating a lot of time in her convention, multiple speakers to this issue.
MCENAN: Yes. And hopefully, this is an opportunity to personalize her a little bit, talk about that personal interaction she had on the campaign trail. That's really was successful for Donald Trump last week is the humanizing of Donald Trump. If this woman can speak to Hillary Clinton's positive attributes, it will be a very good moment for her.
SELLERS: Well, I think I'm taken aback. One of the things that you saw last week versus this week, you actually had speakers who went on stage, especially during the first day, who didn't even mention Donald Trump's name. You have speakers today who are embracing Hillary Clinton. This moment that we're about to see is about to be a very powerful moment, an emotional moment, and one that we really want to see more of Hillary Clinton in. It's a moment that is not draped in politics.
This is something that is very personal to so many people. I look forward to this woman's story and this being an issue. If Donald Trump, God bless him, is the president of the United States, I hope he does something not just about this opioid addiction but drugs in general.
BURNETT: This woman is going to speak Hillary Clinton met on the campaign trail.
[19:35:01] She's going to be speaking about her daughter. We've already heard that. We just heard with Congresswoman Sanchez, talking about children and how important that is. We're going to hear it again later.
She is definitely embracing that as the first female candidate, the first female candidate here. She is embracing those aspects of motherhood and family.
PFEIFFER: She's a mother and grandmother. But also, children's issues were at the beginning of her career, whether she was passing children's health program in the White House when her husband was president. So, this is very important to who she is.
I do think on this particular issue, this is not about politics. It's about the idea that she has a national television audience, big social media audience to push issues she cares about to try to get something done.
BURNETT: This is what we're going to see first this video then hear from her. She met Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail and asked a question going through a very terrible time with her daughter. And now has to take over basic custody of her grandson.
CHALIAN: That's absolutely right. As Dan said, I think this is not just -- you'll start to see this tomorrow night as well. This is about stitching together all the different pieces of Hillary Clinton's life that the campaign wants to get out this week. He mentioned the children's defense fund work and other work she has done. This kind of plays into that narrative.
BURNETT: All right. Let's listen to the video at the Democratic national convention on this issue.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESUMPTIVE PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: You know, when I came here to New Hampshire the first time in this campaign and heard about the heroin epidemic --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Also, the growing drug problem in our area.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're all losing fathers, brothers, sons, mothers.
CLINTON: The numbers of people who are being affected.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You have been impact bid your own or someone else's use of substances, would you just raise your hand?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I didn't even know what was wrong with me until I found out that I was an addict.
CLINTON: This problem touches everybody.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My children suffered. My family suffered.
CLINTON: Meeting grandmothers, raising their grandchildren.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All of my friends are raising their grandchildren because of addiction.
CLINTON: I think you're very brave and very loving to take on this responsibility.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is plaguing families.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't want to go to more funerals. I'm going to one this weekend.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I didn't know if I wanted to better. It had full control of my heart and soul.
CLINTON: I wouldn't have necessarily known that if I hadn't been sitting in a little cafe in Keene, listening to people tell me about what was breaking their hearts and what they wanted their president to know.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We need the voice of those who are using. That is the way in which we can make an impact on this disease.
CLINTON: We can't walk away from these stories. These are our children. These are our friends, our neighbors, our loved ones.
This is not something we can just brush under the rug and wish it would go away. We need to drag it out of the light.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everybody should feel that they are valued, they are cared about and they have a president who sees them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome, Pam Livengood from Keene, New Hampshire.
PAM LIVENGOOD, GRANDSON'S GUARDIAN: Hi. For my 50th birthday, I got a 2-year-old. You see, my daughter and her boyfriend had a beautiful little boy named Francis, but they got caught up in drugs. It started with the pain medication she was given after Francis was born. And it just got worse.
It's hard to explain just how devastating it is to watch your child struggle with substance abuse. I know my daughter loved Francis, but love wasn't enough to take care of him. I started getting calls from child services. And one day, they said Francis would be taken away from my family and put in foster care unless he had family who could take care of him.
There was no way we were going to let our grandson end up in foster care. So, Francis lived with my husband John and I, until he was 5. His grandfather -- he lives with his grandfather now, who is on disability. And when you're my age, you don't expect to start all over again, raising a grandchild.
Today, my daughter is in treatment but she has a long road ahead of her. My story isn't unique. This epidemic has devastated communities all over the country. It doesn't discriminate against age, race, gender or income. It affects all of us.
But sometimes, it feels like folks in Washington don't hear these stories. Well, last year, Hillary Clinton came to New Hampshire for a round table at my workplace.
[19:40:04] And she asked if addiction had touched any of us. And as I told my story, Hillary listened. She even took notes.
And then she did something else we don't see a lot of in Washington. She took action. She came up with a plan, one that includes everything from reducing overdoses to expanding access to treatment.
To me, that's the kind of leader we need. We need a leader who listens to the voices of ordinary Americans, a leader who treats people with compassion and respect, a leader who believes that, as Americans, we look out for each other. I'm not saying that leader has to be a grandmother but it sure helps. For me, that leader is Hillary Clinton.
ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen, Senator Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire.
SEN. JEANNE SHAHEEN (D), NEW HAMSPHIRE: Thank you. Thank you, delegates.
And thank you, Pam Livengood, for sharing your family's story here today. I applaud your courage. Democrats stand with you, your family and all families struggling with addiction and President Hillary Clinton will stand with you and we will win this fight together.
The opioid and heroin epidemic is ravaging communities all across this country. It's a crisis that affects old and young, rich and poor, men and women, Democrats and Republicans. And it will take all of us working together to defeat it. Across my New Hampshire, the awful toll grows each year, 192 overdoses in 2013, 326 fatalities in 2014, and 433 fatalities in 2015.
These stories -- these statistics tell a story of a staggering epidemic, but statistics can't fully capture the profound human toll. It's not only thousands of individual lives that have been destroyed. Entire communities are being devastated.
Hillary Clinton sees the epidemic and its terrific toll because she came to New Hampshire. Not to talk but to listen. And she heard stories like Pam Livengood story. She heard stories like the one I recently heard about a young man full of promise, on his way to college when he suffered a sports injury, got addicted to pain killers, switched to heroin. And now instead of living on the freshman quad, he's living on the streets, panhandling for his next fix.
Hillary heard how addicts are being turned away from treatment facilities due to a lack of resources. And Hillary heard from law enforcement, stretched to their limit, dealing with substance abuse. She knows that drug counselors and police officers and other incredible people on the front lines of the battle are heroes. They're doing amazing work. But they need our help.
More than 47,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2014. Hillary Clinton knows we cannot continue on this path. She knows because during this campaign, she listened in New Hampshire and across the country. She listened. She learned. And she put together a plan to treat this like the health emergency that it is and to deploy the necessary resources to fight it.
Her plan would invest in goals: empower communities to prevent drug use among teenagers, ensure every person suffering from addiction can obtain comprehensive treatment, ensure that all first responders carry Narcan, which can stop overdoses from becoming fatal and prioritize treatment over prison for low-level and nonviolent drug offenses so we can end the era of mass incarceration.
[19:45:16] Early this year, I introduced an emergency funding bill in the Senate to pay for policing, prevention, treatment and recovery. But sadly, it was defeated by Republicans.
Donald Trump certainly doesn't have a plan to deal with this health epidemic that's gripped our country. In fact, Donald Trump doesn't seem to know what's happening outside of Trump Tower. And he seems completely uninterested in finding out.
How can Trump represent America when he doesn't even take the time to know America? We need a president who listens, who learns, who has empathy and who wants the same opportunities for all children that she's had, who wants an America where we go forward together.
We need President Hillary Clinton.
BURNETT: You just heard from Jeanne Shaheen there.
And now, pop star Demi Lovato is going to come out.
David Chalian, has had a serious addiction since she was 19. She said she couldn't go more than 30 minutes without cocaine and now is going to come out and speak about that and then perform one of her most popular songs.
CHALIAN: This is normal affair that you would expect at a political addiction. This is something else. I don't recall seeing something like this actually starting with the mayor of Boston talking about his addiction, all the way through this. This was reaching out to the American people in a different way.
BURNETT: Here's Demi Lovato.
DEMI LOVATO, SINGER-SONGWRITER: Like millions of Americans, I am living with mental illness. But I'm lucky. I had the resources and supporter to get treatment at a top facility.
Unfortunately, too many Americans from all walks of life don't get help either because they fear the stigma or cannot afford treatment. Untreated mental illness can lead to devastating consequences, including suicide, substance abuse and long-term medical issues.
We can do better. Every one of us can make a difference. By getting educated on this epidemic and its frightening statistics and by breaking the stigma, I urge every politician to vote for laws that provide access to better health care and support for everyone.
This is not about politics. It's simply the right to do. I'm doing my very small part by having the treatment center that saw me through my recovery on tour with me so at least a small $ group of people even for a brief moment can have the same support that I received.
It may not be a lot but we have to believe every small action counts. I stand here today, as proof that you can live a normal and empowered life with mental illness. I'm proud to support a presidential candidate who will fight to ensure all people living with mental health conditions get the care they need to lead fulfilling lives. That candidate is Hillary Clinton.
Let's make her the next president of the United States of America.
(DEMI LOVATO SINGING)
[19:52:07] BURNETT: Demi Lovato to a standing ovation at the Democratic National Convention.
Coming up, Senator Bernie Sanders getting ready to speak a Michelle Obama, perhaps as her last major address as first lady.
Anderson Cooper and Wolf Blitzer picking up our coverage when we return.
[19:56:23] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: And welcome.
We are live at the Democratic Convention where Hillary Clinton is getting her turn to tell her story in response to Donald Trump and frame the stakes for this election. I'm Anderson Cooper. Welcome to a special edition of "AC360". Tonight, the Democrats are going to new lengths to try to unite the party here in Philadelphia as they prepare to nominate Hillary Clinton for president. We're told Bernie Sanders will deliver a full-throated endorsement of his former opponent tonight, this just hours after the DNC issued a public apology to Sanders for what it calls inexcusable remarks in e-mails that were leaked to the public.
Another all star speaker tonight, First Lady Michelle Obama, Democrats eager to tap into her popularity, as they try to re-create the coalition of voters that put President Obama in office.
CNN has a front row seat on the convention floor to see it all play out tonight. Let's go across the arena to my colleague, Wolf Blitzer.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Anderson, Hillary Clinton needs a very strong convention after Donald Trump left Cleveland with a bounce in the polls. One of the party's most passionate critics of Trump, Senator Elizabeth Warren, gives the keynote address tonight.
Also tonight, more than any other, seems aimed at energizing liberals in the Democratic Party with the speeches by Senator Warren and Senator Sanders.
Jake Tapper is with us.
Jake, tonight's speeches are all about trying to unify this Democratic Party.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: That's right. It's been very fractious and it's been very contentious in terms of progressives and we're going to have a lot of time to talk about that all night.
But let me take one moment, if I can, Wolf. One hundred years ago in this country, women did not even have the right to vote. Let us take a moment, if we can, to marvel in the fact that from Victoria Woodhull and Belva Ann Lockwood, to Carly Fiorina and Elizabeth Dole, we are finally, in this nation, going to achieve something that other countries have been able to achieve before us, which is have a woman as a major political party nominee. It is a huge moment for the republic itself, whether you like Hillary Clinton or not, whether you're torn about voting for her or you're enthusiastic. It's a big time, a big moment for the United States and I just wanted to take a moment to that.
BLITZER: Good point. She's going to be accepting the Democratic presidential nomination. We're about to hear from 10-year-old Carly Ortiz. She's 11 years old. I should correct that.
She met Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail in February, in Las Vegas, just before the Nevada caucuses. And she told Hillary Clinton at that time, her parents were undocumented immigrants and she feared she would lose her parents.
We're going to hear a lot about this in the coming minutes about these Hispanics who are fearful of that kind of deportation.
TAPPER: In the coming minutes and from now until November, this is one of the biggest dividing lines between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, is the subject of illegal immigration, what to do about undocumented workers in this country, Donald Trump talking about building a wall, talking about deporting 11 million or 12 million of them. Hillary Clinton, the almost exact opposite approach, talking about finding a way to bring them in to the economy and give them legal status.
BLITZER: The major speakers, the first lady of the United States, Michelle Obama. She will be making a very, very strong statement of support for Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders full-throated endorsement. We're going to hear from him tonight and Elizabeth Warren, she is going to give the key note address.
TAPPER: Those are very important speeches this evening. But also what's very important is will or not Michelle Obama, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and others will be able to go out on the campaign trail and get those members of the Obama coalition to the polls. We're talking about college-educated and young, white people who supported Bernie Sanders in huge number. Young people of all colors I should note, as well as African-Americans in the cities.
The progressive wing of this party giving Hillary Clinton a lot of resistance. It's going to be a big challenge.
BLITZER: Let's go to the video first.