Westport resident Martha Aasen will be on hand to nominate President Barack Obama to run for his second term as Democrats converge on Charlotte, N.C. this week at the Democratic National Convention.
Aasen, who has been to eight Democratic National Conventions dating back to 1960 when John F. Kennedy and Lindon B. Johnson were competing with five other candidates, said the conventions have changed over time, but they still play an important role in our history.
“Earlier conventions were quite different. They were competitions, you voted for several different people,” she said. “Nowadays, both republicans and democrats, we already know who the nominee is going to be.”
Conventions used to last a week, but now they are limited to only three days. Aasen, who graduated from Ole Miss and moved to Westport in 1963, said she the energy and atmosphere at each convention she has attended has been fascinating.
“We go there to tell our story about how we want to make this country better than it is today, and do our best to sell our candidates,” Aasen said.
Aaesn has fond memories of the DNC four years ago when the party first nominated Obama.
“We all realized this was someone who was really destined to play a part of the political life in our country,” Aasen said. “This year we we’ll be doing that again.”
In order to win the election this year President Obama needs to tell the story about what has been accomplished in the past four years, Aasen said.
“He has had a lot on his place,” she said, mentioning things like the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, turmoil in the Mid-East and the economic situation the country sits in. “He has accomplished a lot. It’s a story that has to be told.”
In order to become a delegate, you have to apply and put your name up for nomination. Delegates are then chosen during two rounds, becoming pledged and at-large delegates. Delegates vote for the candidate they endorse and have a say in the party platform as well.