April 2 (UPI) -- The Democratic Party said Thursday it has delayed its national nominating convention in Milwaukee by about a month, to Aug. 17, due to the coronavirus emergency.
The convention was scheduled to run four days beginning July 13, but restrictions and health guidelines related to the crisis persuaded the party to postpone the event.
"In our current climate of uncertainty, we believe the smartest approach is to take additional time to monitor how this situation unfolds," DNC CEO Joe Solmonese said. "During this critical time, when the scope and scale of the pandemic and its impact remain unknown, we will continue to monitor the situation and follow the advice of health care professionals and emergency responders."
"I'm confident our convention planning team and our partners will find a way to deliver a convention in Milwaukee this summer that places our Democratic nominee on the path to victory in November," he added.
Some state primaries have also been interrupted by the outbreak. Wednesday, however, Wisconsin officials said their Democratic primary will be staged as scheduled next Tuesday.
The Democratic Party decided on the delay after its presumed nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden, expressed doubt this week that the event could safely be held in July.
"It's hard to envision that," Biden told MSNBC. "We were able to do it in the middle of the Civil War all the way through to World War II, have Democratic and Republican conventions and primaries and elections and still have public safety."