Democratic National Conventions: Past and Present

ABC News' Brad Mielke and Ann Compton tell us what to expect on the final night of the DNC and look back at past conventions.
11:40 | 07/28/16

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Transcript for Democratic National Conventions: Past and Present
Well good evening for the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. I knew BC's Greg looking. We are high above the stage right on back over my shoulder you can see the balloons that we'll talk later tonight. As Hillary Clinton becomes the first woman to accept the nomination in a major party's history. In this country. And a woman who's been there for a whole lot of balloon jobs ABC's Ann Compton. How are you in this is the first time ABC as let me be be up here in the nose bleed section overseeing the balloons this close. The convention's going way back in 1976. When I was brand with ABC news and I was floor correspondent. L point that the delegates trying to figure out as it gets the nomination the Republican Convention. Where we hate it if we didn't know who was gonna. And so we're going to be talking having to little story time in Compton here who has so many stories in. We have or credentials here. You tell me you've kept all of your credentials since one yes since 1976. It was my first convention for ABC news and I've also took the I've got wanting to get on the floor of don't want to get in the ceiling that got one. Search something from the Secret Service. News. I think it's not that one. Spot for. 96. And they gave us. Given special. Credentials for his big announcement. And then we added another big special. Credentials former election night and I say it kept me. Credential in between had sent gave them false sense donated to the museum in Washington and new museum. The long run it's been mentioned no hand like no other horse on it in fact just yesterday you gave me a former nominee I got to speak to Walter Mondale just because. You said. I think I have and it seemed Walter down there on the floor Walter Mondale of course. Nominated for vice president was elected vice president but that ran against Ronald. Collection by Reagan won. 49. States everything except. Mondale's home state asked the president what would you like for your birthday in February sit Minnesota. Nice last night. Walter Mondale. Interviewed with new and I guess grabbed your Mike replace it get here you should be interview McVeigh. These this is how people are on the convention street in content and look at this convention. Have you ever seen anything that is quite rivaled the drama of these two conventions back to back. Right now there import. And their dramatic but there have been such he. Amazingly. Dramatic ones. Like at first in 1976. Incumbent president Gerald Ford he healing the nation after Watergate. And this renegade governor from California named Ronald Reagan a B grade actor. Challenges him they both get to the convention nobody has enough delegates we had to go. Delegation by delegation as each person we can vote for it was a cliff hanger which also had moments like. Convention speakers who either really bomb really electrified. The place. And we have not at this time anything to compare with Clint Eastwood. Who came to BP. Conventions. Four years ago. Add. They've put it empty chair there and he spoke to the empty chair. It was a little creepy most puzzling one probably we've seen. Yeah that there's still pick at 99%. Of what happens at that podium and we never show every war we never even mentioned. The fun part about doing what you would hired to get this convention. You go down on the floor at crucial moments. And you'll find delegates were sitting there anything. They're so excited they can't stand people who could perhaps say. Who are you what is this. And bringing those delicate voices to the American people that's the best business you mention the agony Hayden Clint Eastwood that the Ecstasy any. Who's that was the that was the best speech you've ever seen the most effective one the most the most rousing address you've never seen a couple of them. Outgoing wave back to that 1976. Convention. Where president Ford finally succeeded. He got the nomination but he's such a gracious man he invited Reagan to come to the podium and very final night. And safety of words nothing planned this is totally impromptu. Reagan gave us a beautiful elegant. All writing for history. From the heart shining city on the hill very short address. Everybody else look pretty bad after that. I identity every presidential nominee who gets the nomination and stands there with didn't hire arena. Democrats for 5000 delegates 101000 people in the room. Any nominee who stands there and basks in that time base it's an experience music do you get the impression that that. These are the biggest moments and some of these candidates lives that that he's really do shape. These election. Inaugural addresses are a bit better for the winners. For the losers they're very poignant moments I didn't go down and interview Michael Dukakis tonight just as we go on the air. And here he came and he he ran and he. Launched two. Kennedy. President lost four years later. And he's been limping around their percent so if it can be the biggest moment for you at that point in your life but it's usually not life change. Mike Jensen speaks. I know we've seen so much action from the Bernie Sanders supporters and a lot of it's not even necessarily about Hillary Clinton some of its about. These delegate fights these rules fighters are also at the RNC. Some drama there. What what sort of chaos today have you seen during your time on these convention floor. Oh there's no question that the organizers of conventions sometimes totally lose control. It doesn't happen much an appearance of John county one example that the police are right here its most recent example. Bernie Sanders delegates were still just. On and so much for him to get the validation for all he's done. And when he actually came to the delegates sat but the Vermont delegation. And they say it was their turn everything was choreographed. And Easton and Easton. And said I want this convention to make it unanimous. For Hillary Clinton now some of his own supporters. Were devastated. A leadership like that. I think that's what Americans remember our system as at home right here. Both in their local communities to send their neighbors to come here and pick the next leader of the free world and that's democracy. We're live with ABC's Ann Compton here as we go. Back through at New Year's worth of moments that don't at a convention just like this one. That's yet another balloon got here Sutton at about who those balloons will be falling around Hillary Clinton. Course she had her own moment eight years ago. Now she's in the spotlight what's going through her head right now vote for Hillary Clinton she has wanted this for so long. And she is not only the first woman she's the first spouse about president. To run it's the first time a family has had quite that dynasty and others like the Kennedy Brothers mind. We've had. Father and sons. But the idea but that John Quincy Adams and of course George W. Bush but to have someone. And lived in the White House raised her daughter in the White House and had that had her own political courage and now. He's going to run to run the country. From ordinary Americans scenario and in our Barbara Bush is the one who said. We've had enough dynasties. Somebody other good sources other than the clintons should begin in. But I think it speaks to our political system that once you get on the inside track it's very hard from some outside of Bernie Sanders. McDonald's. To come in. What's that better and that insiders that status quo right now. Speaking in the delegates then as I know there's many Hillary Clinton supporters here. A lot of people who don't like her though even on this floor similarly these aren't the RNC McDonald's company have you seen here where there was so much antipathy from the party itself for the for the people running. There has never. Busy here where the two nominees have such high negatives job disapproval personality disapproval. This convention is much different from flea. In this convention when you put down that this isn't Hillary Clinton I know the Bernie Sanders people are still upset. But this really she Combs this this territory this is certainly a state tonight. Is. In Cleveland for Donald Trump there were still a lot of Republicans. Mainstream puppets and went there on the floor of war. Rules committee one woman who's running the green room down underneath the platform would. Make sure the next speaker was ready and pushed out the right time she's doing it for seven convention Republican conventions. Are happy with their company. So at that convention was unusual in that the roof itself. Was not quite alone the heart is owned by them. And you retired last year he said no more of this. I'm not here for the bell at ABC. As. He's been so wonderful to establish snow. Exit 26 year old kid in the Eliot in Virginia when they vote me out brought it in York and here later Richard Nixon. Resigned and they sent it the White House and nothing Booth next to me is Bob Schieffer and Tom Brokaw. And people would fit in the motorcade but John Kennedy they were shot at school when that happened. So I found myself as a very young reports that ABC has given me all those opportunities. And I am glad I retired my family is thrilled and I'm I'm doing other things now but what brought you back. When ABC Paulson says. Just one. Yes a chance to sit here with Bradley. And her radio anchor Erin could terse yeah we've been partners for so many years. But to be able to sit in the Booth for the first time I've never sat down your convention this war. To sit here and watch. A first home. Another at a what was the same age kids of the same age were both married bills went to Gayle there's a lot of but for the women's colleges is that I've Italy's world and what that they have a lot in common to be able to be here concede that it's kind of the nice. Period at the end of the sentence. This is a period you said you're not coming back for four years from now this is the record it live on ABC news. This tonight it's my Lance. There you go you guys thank you so much for watching and content thank you so much for an extraordinary career. Getting new perspective as it was even till the very last night's until the last balloon pops. I think Compton I'm Brett milky we'll see you next time I hear an ABC news.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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