The Corner

Obama’s Fizzle

This wasn’t a speech that would have fit a stadium and barely fit the arena. It was mostly limp and tinny, and sounded very familiar. He has lost the capacity to surprise or interest. He probably scored the most with his shots against Romney on foreign policy and taxes. But he didn’t make a convincing case on the economy. In general, he rebutted the typical ridiculous strawmen — for example, the idea that Republican proposals to get government spending down to 20 percent of GDP represent incipient anarchism. He was wholly dishonest on entitlements and, tellingly, said he’s eager to cooperate with Republicans except on their policies. He strained for rhetorical take-off near the end, but it’s not 2007 again. I could be wrong, but this convention doesn’t feel very bouncy to me.

Rich Lowry is the editor of National Review. He can be reached via email: 

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