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The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

All of the Non-Michelle Speeches (Condensed Version)



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Tomorrow’s Morning Jolt will feature quite a few thoughts on the first night of the Democratic National Convention. I think Michelle Obama gave about as persuasive a case as can be made for her husband’s reelection — primarily because it so quickly and casually glanced at the record of her husband and focused instead on the tales of a much poorer, little-known Barack and Michelle starting their family life, with coffee tables out of dumpsters and cars with holes in the floor. As more than a few noticed on Twitter, about 90 percent of Michelle Obama’s speech could have been given four years ago.

The early governors all seemed to aim to hit the same note, and if any of them broke through, it was Deval Patrick. But Ted Strickland, Martin O’Malley, San Antonio mayor Julian Castro . . . they all blended together. It’s as if the convention organizers gave them a template to personalize, only slightly:

“The country was on the edge of economic apocalypse when Barack Obama took office. It was entirely the fault of free-market economics, and policies encouraging large home loans to people who had spotty or worse credit ratings had absolutely nothing to do with it. Since then, we . . . have . . . made . . . progress! Don’t look too hard at how much progress, or whether 8.3 percent unemployment with a lower labor-force participation rate really counts as progress to you, or whether that’s even remotely close to what we promised four years ago. Lilly Ledbetter now has a much longer period of time to sue her employers, and this is the single most important development for women in the workplace since Rosie the Riveter! If this speech is before 9:45 p.m. Eastern, we must protect women’s right to abortion! If this speech is after 9:45 p.m. Eastern, we trust women to make the best choices . . . (wink, wink, nudge, nudge) about their bodies! We must keep government away from the all-important doctor-patient relationship! Also, we passed health-care reform, and ignore all of that polling you’ve seen since passage, you’re going to love it! The 26-year-old kids among you most of all!”

“And then there’s Mitt Romney. He’s out of touch! He has a Swiss bank account! He’s out of touch from his Swiss bank account! He’s got money in lots of places, and you and I both know, there must be something criminal involved! The Romney-Ryan budget calls for taking away all of your money! And giving it to millionaires and billionaires — and just the ones you really don’t like, not the celebrities and movie stars you’ll be hearing from later this week!”


Tags: Deval Patrick , Julian Castro , Martin O'Malley , Michelle Obama


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