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Democratic Convention Summary: A Powerful Case for Obama

By September 7, 2012

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It's a great day to be a Democrat. And after the exuberant 2012 Democratic Convention that wowed the nation, I believe it's a great year to be part of the Democratic flock, who, indeed, are "Fired Up and Ready to Go!."

But just as important as passionate energy is the clear portrait Democrats painted of their agenda for our great nation. As the President stated in ending his smart, deeply patriotic speech:

"... we... believe in something called citizenship. Citizenship: a word at the very heart of our founding; a word at the very essence of our democracy; the idea that this country only works when we accept certain obligations to one another and to future generations...

"America, we understand that this democracy is ours. We, the people, recognize that we have responsibilities as well as rights; that our destinies are bound together; that a freedom which asks only 'what's in it for me,' a freedom without commitment to others, a freedom without love or charity or duty or patriotism is unworthy of our founding ideals and those who died in their defense...

"Yes, our road is longer, but we travel it together. We don't turn back. We leave no one behind. We pull each other up... we keep our eyes fixed on that distant horizon, knowing... that we are surely blessed to be citizens of the greatest nation on Earth."

The complete message of the 2012 Democratic Convention is found in consideration of the collective speeches delivered at the three-day liberal celebration. Highlights for me, other than the President's words, included:

    On Tuesday, Day One:
  • House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer, who described how House Republicans have blocked President Obama at every turn
  • Rep. James Clyburn, the third-ranking House Democrat
  • Tammy Duckworth, Iraq War veteran and Congressional candidate
  • Two Democratic governors who delivered passionate stem-winders in defense of Obama, Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts and former Gov. Ted Strickland of Ohio
  • And, of course, First Lady Michelle Obama, whose remarkably strong, personal speech was a convention headliner. As she did again in this speech, Mrs. Obama often explains her husband's aspirations more fully than does the President.
    On Wednesday, Day Two:
  • Labor leader Richard Trumka, AFL-CIO President, who made the case that Obama supports hard-working Americans
  • Harvard professor Elizabeth Warren, U.S. Senate candidate in Massachusetts, who powerfully explained how "the system is rigged against" "hard-working people: people who get up early, stay up late, cook dinner and help out with homework; people who can be counted on to help their kids, their parents, their neighbors, and the lady down the street whose car broke down; people who work their hearts out..."
  • President Bill Clinton, who graciously and astutely made the case for reelecting President Obama. (I fully believe that Clinton would still be President, barring term limits. His charm remains infectious and contagious! Here's Clinton's 2008 convention speech: judge for yourself.)
    On Thursday, Day Three:
  • DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, who teared up as she spoke of her breast cancer battle and the Affordable Care Act
  • Jennifer Granholm, former Michigan governor, who preached to the Democratic choir about Obama's tremendous support of the ailing auto industry. See photo, above right. (She had the best tagline of the convention about Romney: "The cars get the elevator, the workers get the shaft!")
  • Sen John Kerry, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chair, who spelled out the convincing case for Obama's foreign policy accomplishments (Where was this John Kerry in 2004?)

I was encouraged by the deep bench of rising Democratic leaders, including Rep. Karen Bass, Rep. Judy Chu, and Rep. Xavier Becerra. Especially inspiring was the rich cadre of young, new Democratic leadership voices, including San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, California Attorney General Kamala Harris, Congressional candidate Joseph Kennedy III, LGBT activist Zach Wahls, and College Democrats of America President Alejandra C. Salinas.

But I was personally most touched at understanding, again, that the Democratic Party is led jointly by both women and men, not mainly men. And in stark contrast to the Republican Party, Democrats care and take action about the issues that most concern women... health, education, communities, families, choice, and giving everyone a fair shot at the American Dream.

To me, this was gloriously personified when all twelve women Democratic U.S. Senators were recognized, and assembled on center stage on Day Two:

Objectively, I have no earthly idea why women would vote Republican in 2012, and not Democratic. In fact, I have no idea why every American wouldn't vote to reelect President Obama.

(Well, except for greedy, unpatriotic millionaires and billionaires. Please read or watch Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland's superbly on-target speech: "Barack Obama is betting on the American worker. Mitt Romney is betting on a Bermuda shell corporation. Barack Obama saved the American auto industry. Mitt Romney saved on his taxes. Barack Obama is an economic patriot. Mitt Romney is an outsourcing pioneer.")

The 2012 Democratic convention is history now, friends, and it's up to us Democrats to get-out-the vote! The future of our great country, and of the middle class, depends on our effort.


September 8, 2012 at 10:25 am
(1) rob says:

B.Hussein Obama will not win this election because he has no record to promote. His democrat-led senate hasnt approved a budgetsince before he was inaugurated, he hasnt gotten a single senate vote for his own proposed budgets, unemployment has been over 8% since he took office, and average gas prices have gone up from 1.89/ g to 4/gallon. Sure he talks like a nice guy, he may soubd suave and “cool”, but those are facts that i just stated and you can blame the republucans all you want but eventually that argument falls apart. Dems control the senate and executive branch but have done nothing. At least the gop has approved budgets in the house, even if they get rejected by the senate.

September 8, 2012 at 10:26 am
(2) eddie white says:

I’m sticking with obama because we’ve came a long way

September 8, 2012 at 10:33 am
(3) James Walden says:

I am in total agreement with all that was said at the convention, and fully support the call for a second term for the President!!!!!

September 8, 2012 at 3:27 pm
(4) Veronica says:

Rob: The Republicans created this mess that Obama walked into and they’ll create even more of it if Romney gets in. Keep in mind that they have also blocked just about every good legislation that the president and the Democrats have proposed (and no, Republican legislation that offers nothing good just doesn’t cut it). So I say: keep Obama in.

September 8, 2012 at 5:04 pm
(5) John Ballard says:

…the gop has approved budgets in the house, even if they get rejected by the senate.

That should read …the gop has approved budgets in the house, knowing at the time that they would be rejected by the senate.

You’ve been drinking too much Koolade, rob.

October 1, 2012 at 11:42 am
(6) Emily says:

I am a woman and I will not vote for Obama for many reasons: I am against abortion; I am against big government. I am also against same sex marriage. Oh by the way, I am not greedy, nor am I a millionaire. My husband is a blue color worker and a member of a union. Thanks to Obama who take away chunk of tax $$$ and our budget is even tighter than we were during Bush admin.

October 3, 2012 at 5:23 pm
(7) Veronica says:

To Emily: Fine if you’re against abortion, but it’s NOT okay for a politician to try to deny the rest of us women that same right. There are plenty of women out there who are anti-abortion but don’t try to deny others that right. That’s called being pro-choice–and that’s me.

October 3, 2012 at 9:48 pm
(8) Bailey says:

Veronica: Don’t think about your biased opinion and look at the facts. The unemployment rate has stayed at 8% since Obama has been in office. He’s made an even bigger mess than the mess that was started. He has doubled the deficit each year of the past four years. Obama may not take away the right of abortion but he has taken away the free choice of choosing whether or not you want to pay for health insurance. So I say: give someone else a chance. It’s time for change, yet again.

October 3, 2012 at 10:03 pm
(9) Veronica says:

Bailey: The “change” you have in mind is the very thing that got us into this mess in the first place. Obama HAS done something to fix this colossal mess that he inherited (remember, it DIDN’T start with him); voting for the “change” you want will only plunge us into it again. And being a woman, I can’t vote for this “change” because I will lose my rights to make my own choices about my body and my life. No way will I vote for that. I’m sticking with Obama.

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