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DNC Off To Rocky Start As Party Stresses Need For Unity

PHILADELPHIA (KDKA) -- The Democratic National Convention kicked off with a bang Monday as the party struggled to unite amid scandals.

At the first mention of Hillary Clinton's name, there were many audible boos from Bernie Sanders fans , which sparked an even louder reaction from her supporters.

Monday was the first official day of the DNC, and more than 200 Pennsylvania delegates got down to business with breakfast and some uplifting speeches.

"We're going to make Hillary Clinton the next president of the United States and Pennsylvania's gonna make the difference," said Rich Trumka.

"We're here because the Democratic Party is the party of 'we' and not the party of 'me,'" said Senator Cory Booker from New Jersey.

At age 87, Angie Gialoretti from Wilkins Township is attending her 10th convention.

"I'm not gonna stay home as long as I have a breath of air," she said.

For local delegates like her, unity is the theme.

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"If nothing else, ever convention I've attended they have stressed party unity," Gialoretti said.

This year is no different, but the party was still reeling from a stunning discovery. Hacked emails published by WikiLeaks appeared to show top officials at the supposedly neutral Democratic National Committee working to tip the scales toward Clinton.

The ordeal led to the resignation of Debbie Wasserman Schultz as the party's chairwoman.

"This was wrong," said former Lt. Governor Mark Singel. "There were some staffers that clearly were overstepping their bounds, and it was Debbie Wasserman Schultz fell on the sword, and it was Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama who orchestrated those things. I think that puts it behind us."

Many delegates felt the media was over-hyping the incident, when voters care about other things.

"They want to hear what party is gonna stick up for them and raise their wages and help their kids go to college and have a secure retirement," said Rep. Mike Doyle. "They want to see what party wants to build bridges and bring us together, rather than build walls and divide us."

Yet, it was a rocky start for a convention focused on Hillary Clinton and her agenda for the country.

"I think that's what people are looking for, a candidate who can actually make this country fair, not just for the one percent but for everybody," Governor Tom Wolf said.

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