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In an election season of convention firsts, U.S. President Donald Trump is considering delivering his Republican convention speech from the White House. (Aug. 21)

AP Domestic

Democrats countered the messages coming out of the Republican National Convention by putting the COVID-19 pandemic in the spotlight – literally. 

As Republicans delivered convention speeches at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium in Washington, Democrats used a projector to cast a giant slideshow about the ever-rising number of coronavirus cases and deaths onto the side of the former Newseum, about six blocks away. 

“During his convention, Trump and Republicans will try to mislead the public about their failure to contain the coronavirus or likely ignore this pandemic altogether. That’s why we’re making sure voters know the truth – Trump’s failed leadership has led to over 175,000 deaths, more than 5 million cases, millions of lost jobs, and he still has no plan to stop it,” Democratic National Committee War Room spokesperson Lily Adams told USA TODAY. 

Democrats have regularly accused President Donald Trump and his Republican supporters of downplaying the severity of the pandemic. Trump insisted for months that the GOP convention would be held in a traditional, live format before agreeing that much of the event would have to be held virtually because of the danger of infection. 

‘Not an easy task’: GOP scrambles to finalize plans for convention amid COVID-19, venue changes, Trump input

In addition to projecting coronavirus statistics near the Mellon Auditorium, prominent Democrats will offer addresses on each night of the convention on the ways they believe the U.S. is in crisis. 

On Monday, Rep. Val Demings of Florida – one of the House impeachment managers during Trump’s Senate trial and a reported member of the shortlist of candidates Biden was considering as a running mate – will speak on the theme of “Families in Crisis.” 

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey will speak Tuesday on the “Economy in Crisis.” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will address “Health Care in Crisis” on Wednesday and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg will speak on the night Trump accepts the nomination about the “Country in Crisis.” 

Trump attempted his own counter programming during the Democratic National Convention last week with rallies in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Arizona and Pennsylvania.

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