Day Three: Bill Clinton, John Kerry, and Joe Biden

Barack Obama was officially nominated by his party tonight.  Bill Clinton gave a barnburner that had them dancing in the aisles.  John Kerry hammered on national security, and Joe Biden was introduced to the nation as the next Vice President.

Johnkerry

Joebidenkid

Discuss.

Comments

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    I was cleaning Abby's room, so I missed President Clinton. But I have been able to catch all of Kerry's speech. He's doing a really good job of being the one to attack McCain. Like one of the reporters from CNN said last night - each night there is a person who strips the skin off the opposition. Obviously that was Kerry tonight.

    I loved his comments about how he knows Senator McCain, but is getting to know Candidate McCain. How candidate McCain is against positions Senator McCain took. And that he needs to finish his debate with himself before he takes on anyone else.

    "Talk about being for it before you were against it," he joked.

    I think this convention is filled with great speeches that can be used to help convince those who are still sitting on the fence.

  • stan (unverified)
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    Kerry just gave the best speech I've ever heard him give. Beyond great.

  • Bill R. (unverified)
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    Biden was superb! And his mother's presence and her story, the whole Biden family were an absolute hit. And Barack's appearance to top it off... stunning........

  • admiral_naismith (unverified)
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    I can see how Biden gets re-elected so handily each term. Half the population of Delaware is in his family.

    My God, there's more Bidens than there are Kennedys!

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    I have to get up for work in, like, five hours... but I had to watch the speeches tonight before I could go to sleep. I was worried about some underlying bitterness from President Clinton, but he, like Hillary, let his disappointment show without it overpowering what is most important - that we pick up where we left off nearly eight years ago.

    Joe Bidend - Oh my God! That was the best VP speech I think I've ever seen (sorry, Al).

    I'm inspired. I'm totally inspired. If America cannot see what I saw tonight - then I'm in the wrong damned country.

    And it ain't over yet!

  • Matthew Sutton (unverified)
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    Greetings from Denver! If I did this right, you should be able to access my first hand reports from the Oregon delegation by clicking my name.

    To all a good night!

  • (Show?)

    Sorry to do this, but why does typing anything in the comment box at the "Homework" thread cause the thread to reload to a PUMA website, and is there anyone on scene in Portland who can do anything about it?

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    Chris -- fixed. Thanks for the heads up.

  • GeapsepalaHok (unverified)
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  • Buckman Res (unverified)
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    First words out of Biden’s mouth described JMac as “a friend, a good friend, an honorable man, a war hero”, etc. Strange way to go about convincing voters that your opponent would be a bad choice for the country.

    Any subsequent criticism Biden might have made was blunted by all that praise he started with. Plus it’s impossible for Biden to attack JMac on his support for the Iraq war since Biden was one of its biggest cheerleaders.

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    First words out of Biden’s mouth described JMac as “a friend, a good friend, an honorable man, a war hero”, etc. Strange way to go about convincing voters that your opponent would be a bad choice for the country.

    Actually, that's an excellent way to convince undecided or swing voters who may share those sentiments about McCain but who are uncomfortable with some of his policies or who think he's too old. If you don't believe me, you should have noticed that Bill Clinton did the same essentially the same thing Joe Biden did--and no one has ever accused Clinton of being a political novice.

    My hope is that the Republican speakers understand this and don't try to belittle Barack and Michelle Obama. Questioning his experience, his preparedness, even his "toughness" is fair; questioning his or her patriotism or "Americanism" will backfire, in my opinion.

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    First words out of Biden’s mouth described JMac as “a friend, a good friend, an honorable man, a war hero”, etc. Strange way to go about convincing voters that your opponent would be a bad choice for the country.

    Any subsequent criticism Biden might have made was blunted by all that praise he started with. Plus it’s impossible for Biden to attack JMac on his support for the Iraq war since Biden was one of its biggest cheerleaders.

    I agree with jack. Read David Brooks's columns and read his commentary. Brooks openly admires Obama and I think has some of the most on-point criticism of Obama's weaknesses.

    Brooks argues (and I agree) that attacking McCain's character is a no-win proposition. We should honor the man, his service, and even his voting record IN THE PAST.

    And then we should express deep disagreement with his current proposals and his voting record in the last 8 years.

  • LT (unverified)
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    Jack, I agree. If the GOP turns their 2008 convention into another "slanderfest", they deserve a loss of historic proportions (Goldwater to LBJ sort of thing).

    There may be red meat types who love the unvarnished attacks. But is the goal to be nasty, or is the goal to win over undecided voters? Seems there are people in both parties who could learn from that.

    My brother is someone in what I once thought was a target audience of the GOP. He's a white male in his 40s. His work as a technician at a convention hotel can be physically demanding (meeting equipment setup, take down, etc.). Our grandfather was a Republican elected official (in another state) many decades ago.

    He thinks for himself.

    That is why he had given up on the GOP and registered NAV some years ago, prior to 2004. He had seen Kerry on CSPAN and been impressed, so he was happy when Kerry ran for President.

    He called the 2004 GOP convention a "slanderfest"--all they wanted to do was slander Kerry and other Democrats. About that time, his local GOP sent out a mailing to former Republicans registered NAV "wouldn't you like to return to the Republican Party?". After some thought, he wrote them a letter saying "Thank you for the enclosed registration form. But given the behavior of the 2004 GOP convention, I have decided to register as a Democrat".

    When people talk about the Republican brand, among other things they are saying that ordinary folks no longer want anything to do with a party which seems like it loves slandering opponents more than solving problems.

    Not to mention the Pat Buchanan speech and others at the 1992 GOP convention which convinced an old family friend, life long Republican, to vote for Clinton because of the way the Republicans were attacking Hillary in particular in a way she thought inappropriate.

    Yes, I know there are those in both parties who love red meat. But I thought the purpose of a political party/political campaign was to win elections. "I like the guy" (or woman) has always seemed to me an excellent way to campaign.

    The "scalpel" approach of "John McCain is a war hero, but the way he has voted in the last 8 years..." or "Yes, McCain is a war hero, but there are other veterans with better voting records on veterans issues--what was his problem with the recent GI Bill?" (starting with a positive and then stating opposition) is very often a more effective tactic than the "chainsaw" approach of "he's unpatriotic", "he was wrong on the war", or belittling anyone who supports one's opponent.

    Republicans would do well to remember the Golden Rule, esp. about the spouses. Anything they wouldn't want said about Cindy McCain, they shouldn't say about Michelle Obama.

  • Lani (unverified)
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    I was very impressed with Captain Biden's speech (DE's AG). He did a great job humanizing his father and will be a person to watch in the future.

    One of the better things about the convention is getting a glimpse into the future of the Democratic party by showcasing some of the younger talent out there.

  • Harry Kershner (unverified)
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    Biden recently went to Georgia himself to beat the war drums and threaten Russia with "consequences" if they don’t leave Georgia alone. "When Congress reconvenes, I intend to work with the administration to seek Congressional approval for $1 billion in emergency assistance for Georgia, with a substantial down payment on that aid to be included in the Congress’ next supplemental spending bill," Biden said." (Biden calls for $1 billion in emergency aid to Georgia).

    Welcome to the new, improved Cold War. Is this the "change" you want? Not even less insane than McCain.

  • Buckman Res (unverified)
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    There may be red meat types who love the unvarnished attacks. But is the goal to be nasty, or is the goal to win over undecided voters?

    I’m not suggesting Biden should have come out like a slathering, rabid, attack dog tearing into JMac’s character and moral fitness. But instead of wasting time praising the opposition he should have cut directly to substantive policy differences and drawn clear distinctions for voters.

    What he ended up doing was giving cover to voters uncomfortable with BHO’s lack of experience by making JMac a safe alternative who even Dem leadership has respect for.

    I doubt the favor will be returned next week when the Repubs meet.

  • Harry Kershner (unverified)
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    Kerry's first choice for his running mate four years ago, McCain, is and was then a war criminal, not a war hero. That Democrats would disagree is proof positive of the degree to which the party has moved irrevocably to the right.

    <h2>Kerry admitted during a time when I admired him that he and the US government had committed war crimes, and he as well as the other DP elites need to return to the spirit of that time. Instead, they are returning to the spirit of the Cold War.</h2>
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