Democratic National Convention: The schedule for 2020

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The Democratic Party is heading into unchartered territory as it readies for its first-ever mostly digital National Democratic Convention, which is set to culminate in the official nomination of presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden. 

In the past, the event has been a high-energy pinnacle of the primary season, when delegates across the United States pledge their support for the candidate who will compete for the highest office in the country in the November general election. 

US Democratic race: How it works

Part hype fest, part party business, the gathering is also when the Democratic Party unveils its 2020 Democratic Platform - a list of the party's defining policies and values for the election season. 

This year's four-day convention will be anchored in the city of Milwaukee, in the US state of Wisconsin, but will be mostly digital, with speeches from Democratic heavyweights, officials and the presumptive candidate Biden all live-streamed from across the country as a precaution for the coronavirus pandemic. 

The party has said only essential staff will be on site to make sure things run smoothly. The convention's main nighttime events will be preceded by party caucus and council meetings, as well as a pre-show from 7pm to 9pm local time (23:00 GMT to 01:00 GMT).

Here is the schedule for the 2020 Democratic National Convention:

DNC 2016

The 2020 Democratic National Convention will be scaled down in light of the coronavirus pandemic, unlike the high-energy event in 2016 when Hillary Clinton was officially nominated the party's candidate [File: Andrew Harnik/The Associated Press]

Monday, August 17 Theme

The first night of events is themed "We the People" and will feature speakers who the party says have risen up to face three defining challenges in modern American life: The coronavirus pandemic, the resulting unemployment crisis and racial injustice.

9pm to 11pm   (01:00 GMT to 03:00 GMT) Speakers

Former First Lady Michelle Obama

Former Democratic Presidential candidate, Senator Bernie Sanders

Senator Catherine Cortez Masto

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer

Representative Jim Clyburn

Convention Chairman Representative Bennie Thompson

Representative Gwen Moore

Former Governor John Kasich

Senator Doug Jones

Former Democratic presidential candidate, Senator Amy Klobuchar

biden sanders

Former presidential Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders has thrown his support behind Biden [File: Matt Rourke/The Associated Press]

Tuesday, August 18 Theme

Tuesday is themed "Leadership Matters" and will focus on the "leaders and the experts, the veterans and the activists, all those who seek to unite and not divide, and who step up - not back down - from a fight over what’s right", according to the party. 

9pm to 11pm ET (01:00 GMT to 03:00 GMT) 'Roll call across America'

Tuesday will include a virtual roll call that will "take viewers to all 57 states and territories" across the US as delegates officially cast votes to nominate Biden.

Speakers

Former Acting US Attorney General Sally Yates

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer

Former Secretary of State John Kerry

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Representative Lisa Blunt Rochester

Former President Bill Clinton

Former Second Lady, Joe Biden's wife, Dr Jill Biden

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden, accompanied by his wife Jill, speaks to members of the press at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, Tuesday, March 10,

Joe Biden's wife, Dr Jill Biden is set to speak on the second day of the Democratic National Convention [File: Matt Rourke/The Associated Press]

Wednesday, August 19  Theme

Wednesday's theme is "A More Perfect Union" and speakers are set to include the "Vice Presidential nominee and many others who are committed to working alongside Joe Biden to achieve his goals to form a more perfect union". The night will also include the official nomination of Biden's vice presidential pick Kamala Harris.

9pm to 11pm ET (01:00 GMT to 03:00 GMT) Speakers

Democratic Vice Presidential Candidate Kamala Harris

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi

Former Secretary of State and 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton

Former Democratic Presidential candidate, Senator Elizabeth Warren

Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers

New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham

Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords

Kamala Harris

Senator Kamala Harris has been chosen as Joe Biden's candidate for vice president [File: Etienne Laurent/EPA]

Thursday, August 20: Theme

The final night of the convention focuses on Joe Biden himself and is themed "America's Promise". 

Speakers will include individuals who can speak to Joe Biden’s "leadership and character", according to the party.

Joe Biden will address the convention and "speak about his vision for uniting America to move us forward out of constant chaos and crisis, and for delivering on that promise for all".

9pm to 11pm ET (01:00 GMT to 03:00 GMT) Speakers

Vice President Joe Biden

Former Democratic Presidential candidate, Senator Cory Booker

California Governor Gavin Newsom

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms

Senator Tammy Baldwin

Senator Tammy Duckworth

Senator Chris Coons

The Biden family

Joe Biden speech

Democratic presidential candidate, former Vice President Joe Biden is set to speak on Thursday night [File: Andrew Harnik/The Associated Press]

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