Bernie Tattoos, Hillary Hats & More Photos From Inside The DNC

Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Amid sweltering temperatures and the party’s own simmering scandal over an email hack that prompted the Democratic National Committee chairperson's resignation, the 2016 Democratic National Convention is officially set to begin.

Presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is expected to formally become her party’s choice for the White House after a roll call vote on Tuesday, but some of the delegates loyal to Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders have pledged to take the fight all the way to the convention floor.

Hundreds of Sanders supporters protested against Clinton on Sunday, and hundreds marched from Camden, NJ, to Philadelphia on Monday to gather outside City Hall. As leadership calls for unity, some delegates are concerned about the party's ability to come together before November, when Clinton is expected to take on Republican nominee Donald Trump.

As delegates arrived and prepared for what promises to be one of the biggest weeks in their party's history, female Democrats shared their thoughts with Refinery29.

Editor's note: We asked Republican women about their feelings in Cleveland, too. Read that story here. Refinery29’s News team is on the ground covering the Republican National Convention and the Democratic National Convention. Follow along @R29News and check out our full coverage of the 2016 race here.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misspelled Jessica Chasteen's name. Refinery29 regrets the error.
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Megan Srinivas
Iowa Delegate

"I'm just really excited to be able to be a part of voting on the platform, and for Hillary," Srinivas told Refinery29.

She said she has been a fan of Hillary Clinton since 2008.

"I was going to college in Boston at the time, and the caucus was the night before my organic chemistry final, and I actually flew back to place my very first caucus vote for her. She has long stood for every principle I believe in, from women's health rights to healthcare access for children, and just fighting for the underdog who doesn't often have a voice. And it doesn't matter if she's going against the tide or all the naysayers — she is there to stand up for what she believes in and truly carry through on her words."
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Lore Elisabeth, (right)
Germantown, PA


Elisabeth backs Sanders. But she's planning on voting for Clinton in the fall, since she sees her as the "lesser of two evils" compared to Donald Trump.

"The most important issues [to me] are civil rights, LGBTQ equality, climate change, obviously, equal pay, women’s rights," she said.
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Nicole Butler Talley
Black Girls Vote organization

"We have a clear purpose going into November. Whichever nominee comes out, because there's a chance it might not be Hillary, it could be Bernie, whoever it is, we have to have a clear purpose of winning in November."

She said Black Girls Vote is not only working to register people to vote, but also informing them about the candidates' policy stances.

"It's not just about voting, even though that's the first step and the main step. There are other things that you need to consider," she said.
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Aisha Alyaseen
Originally from Kuwait, now living in Philadelphia

"I don’t believe in your election because I think everyone should vote individually. I don’t like the [superdelegate] system. Back in my country, we have also a voting system. I like my country where everyone has to choose one [candidate] and they count the votes directly. All are equal," she said.
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Lexi Lanka
Omaha, NE


Lanka, a Bernie Sanders supporter, came to Philadelphia to participate in pro-Sanders demonstrations.

"I support all his ideals, but it’s also cool to see a group of people come together — with or without him — to make change," she said.
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Natalie Vowell
Missouri Delegate


“This has been my go-to campaign gear: this Bernie sash. The day of the presidential-preference primary, I decided, Dress like the event you wish you were going to. So we are just going to dress like it’s Bernie’s inauguration until the end of the campaign. Here we are at the DNC, and this is the big time."
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Vowell said what she was most excited about has already happened.

"I was most looking forward to Debbie Wasserman Schultz stepping down, and that’s already happened, so I think we are going to have better leadership and [a] more fair chair, so it’s going to be interesting."
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Melanie Draper
Portland, OR


"At this point, I’m closest to Jill Stein and will be voting for her come November."
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Lorraine Hatcher
Guest of Washington Delegation

"I'm here to support Hillary, and I'm excited for at least two reasons. First and foremost, I think she is the most qualified person to be president of the United States. Secondly, I'm excited because I think that she will bring this country back together again after all the divisive and disgusting kinds of rhetoric that have come from the Republican side."

Hatcher also had strong words for Sanders supporters who don't want to support Clinton.

"I think for many of the Bernie Sanders people, their issues are more systemic, having little to do with this electoral process. They're the generation whose parents never told them no, that got trophies for participation as opposed to winning, and don't understand really what the democratic process is. So, really, what we will see here in the next couple of days is them doing a Donald Trump-like temper tantrum, stomping their feet…things like that. I think they'll go away, which is unfortunate, because I would rather that they become part of the democratic process."
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Jessica Chasteen
Knoxville, TN


"I came here to support Bernie, march in the protests, go to the rallies, and show support…I will be voting in November, but I won’t be voting for Hillary."
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Liz Cole and Chicken the dog
Philadelphia


"I’m very grateful to Bernie Sanders for energizing so many people and getting so many people to actively take a stance," Cole said.

"I’m feeling very strongly about Bernie Sanders, so it might be a tough call, but I will vote for the Democratic ticket. I’m not voting for Trump."
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Elizabeth Hahn
Georgia Delegate


"We are Hillary supporters."
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Sameera Khan
Former Miss New Jersey


"I don’t live in a swing state thankfully, but I could never vote for Hillary Clinton," she said. "She is everything I stand against."
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Dannielle Owens-Reid
Los Angeles

The 30-year-old said that Sanders was the first candidate to really light a political spark for her, so much so that she had his face tattooed on her arm.

"I was inspired by Obama — he came to my school and spoke and I thought he was really amazing, but I was like two-and-a-half blocks from Grant Park when we found out that he won [in 2008], and I was at a Hanson concert. And after [the concert], we got on a bus and got home. We didn’t go to Grant Park," she said. "But if Bernie was there, I would have been there."
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Allison Vail
Colorado Delegate


"I’ve been supporting Bernie from the very beginning. I saw him in Denver when he came last year, very early in his campaign. I have been following his career as a politician for at least a decade, and as soon as he announced that he was running, I knew that he was the man I would support," she said.
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Vail had mixed feelings about supporting Hillary Clinton, however.

"That poses a little bit of a problem for me. I’m also a party-elected official. So I have to support my candidate, our nominated candidate. What I [will] do in the privacy of my own ballot booth, I’m not sure yet."
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Kim Netherton
Colorado At-Large Delegate


"I’m most hoping Bernie Sanders will be the Democratic nominee for president,” she said. “I think it’s a contested convention. Hillary Clinton doesn’t have the delegates to win; Bernie doesn’t have the delegates to win, so it’s up to us to convince people to vote for Bernie. He’s a stronger candidate; he can beat Trump. Everybody keeps talking about how terrible and horrible Trump is, and it’s true, but if the DNC were as worried as they say they are, they would choose Bernie Sanders who polls higher and has more support."
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Netherton shows off her Bernie button earrings.
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Valencia Seay
Georgia State Senator


"I'm here to support Hillary!"
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Diana Hatsis-Neuhoff
Florida Delegate


"I’m looking to nominate the Democrat. I am an absolute Bernie Sanders supporter. But if [Hillary] is the nominee… My intention is to get the Democratic nominee elected."
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Hatsis-Neuhoff said the convention is about more than just finding unity.

"I see unity, but we also want to hold the Democratic nominee’s feet to the fire with a Democratic platform that is progressive. We worked really hard to make it progressive, and if there is any steering away from that progressive platform, we will be loud, we will be heard, and we hold the Democratic nominee’s feet to the fire to stay with that progressive message."
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Fay Herold
Alaska Guest Delegate


"I'm looking for a nomination for Bernie Sanders on a contested convention floor fight," she said. "I am confident in my soul that it will happen. It's happened before. The last time it happened was FDR, and he bucked the system in the same way Bernie has. Nobody ever thought he would win, but he won his nomination on a contested convention floor, and he became one of the most beloved presidents we have ever had."
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Photographed By Nathaniel Welch/Redux.
Herold shows off her buttons.

"My mom is 90, and she remembers FDR, and she believes Bernie is very much like him. So, we have faith, we have hope, and we have belief that [he] is the best for our country."
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