Key takeaways from night 2 of the Democratic convention

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In this image from video, former Georgia House Democratic leader Stacey Abrams, center, and others, speak during the second night of the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. (Democratic National Convention via AP)

Sustaining energy through four days of a political convention is never easy. It's even more challenging during this, the first virtual convention. On the second night of the Democratic National Convention, party leaders tried to blend its past with its future.

Here are key takeaways from night two.

DEMOCRATS DISPLAY BIG TENT

Joe Biden, who was formally nominated Tuesday night in a virtual roll call of states, doesn’t shy away from the obvious: He’s a 77-year-old white man leading a party that celebrates its racial and ethnic diversity and gets a majority of its votes from women.

He has at times offered himself as a bridge to bring together that coalition, calling himself a “transitional figure” for the party and the country.

Democrats tried to put that on vivid display, an ideological arc that spanned the New Democrat centrism of former President Bill Clinton to the new century progressive movement of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, who was born in 1989, the year after Biden's first presidential run.

Democrats were trying to show that their party tolerates differences in ways that the Republican Party led by President Donald Trump does not. The Democrats honored Clinton, and former president Jimmy Carter, along with the party's nominee in 2004, former Secretary of State John Kerry. Cindy McCain, whose husband, John, was the Republican nominee in 2008, appeared in a video praising Biden.

Former President George W. Bush, the only living GOP ex-president, and Sen. Mitt Romney, the party's nominee in 2012, will not be part of the Republican convention next week.