Quick Takes: The Question of Democratic Unity

* While some might suggest that he’s a bit late to this party, today Bernie Sanders did his part to promote unity among Democrats.

Brothers and sisters, brothers and sisters, this is, this is the real world that we live in. Trump is a bully and a demagogue. Trump has made bigotry and hatred the cornerstone of his campaign. Throughout this campaign he has insulted Mexicans and Latinos, he has insulted Muslims, he has insulted women and African Americans. […] Trump does not respect the Constitution of the United States or civil liberties. […] Trump is a danger for the future of our country and must be defeated! And I intend to do everything I can to see that he is defeated.

Whether or not he can convince his supporters who have gathered in Philadelphia remains to be seen.

* Paul Waldman provides some important perspective on the “Democrats in Disarray” headlines that are soaking up all of the media attention today.

And this is what’s important to understand about the protests now going on: They aren’t Democrats fighting with Democrats…I’d encourage the reporters who are there and are covering the anti-Clinton protests to ask those participating a simple question: Do you consider yourself a Democrat? Because I’m fairly certain that they’ll find almost no one who says yes. This is even true of some of the people who are Bernie Sanders delegates; they got involved in the Sanders campaign, but they weren’t Democrats before this election began and they won’t be after it’s over…

Just to be clear, none of that invalidates the substance of the critiques the protesters are making; those can be evaluated on their own terms. Nor does it mean that the fact of the protest itself isn’t newsworthy. What it does mean, however, is that it’s a fundamentally different story from “Dems in Disarray!”

* If Trump’s word on this means anything, there is no question about who is responsible for the hack on the DNC server.

“Little did [Wasserman Schultz] know, Russia, China, one of our many, many ‘friends’” – Trump emphasized with air quotes – “came in and hacked the hell out of us. Can you imagine?”

Trump was discussing the cyber attack on the DNC, which has been widely attributed to Russian intelligence forces.

* James Fallows highlights a fascinating take on the Trump/Putin connection from a “Ukrainian Jewish immigrant, now a naturalized citizen of the United States. I also was a Bernie Sanders voter in the primary, who will be voting for Hillary Clinton in the general election.” Here’s just a taste – but you should read the whole thing:

…in the recent stories, there’s been this emerging picture of Russia as a legitimate threat to the United States, run by a chessmaster. Russia is not a legitimate threat, and Putin is not a chessmaster. Russia is a transparently desperate country. The sanctions and financial freezes have spread Russia thin. They’ve impacted the oligarchs that run the country. They’ve impacted its long-term capacity to use war as an economic plan and perpetually hold sovereign states as territories on a whim. They’ve reduced its capacity to control its client states.

The well is running dry. And what they’re doing is the same thing they did in Ukraine.

* Here are a couple of my favorite tweets about VP nominee Tim Kaine.

* The line-up of prime-time speakers at the Democratic National Convention tonight is powerful: Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Sen. Bernie Sanders and First Lady Michelle Obama.

* Finally, here is an important reminder:

Nancy LeTourneau

Nancy LeTourneau is a contributing writer for the Washington Monthly.