Lovely US First Lady Michelle Obama stands up for Hillary and knocks ‘em dead — while Bill O’Reilly at Fox News still thinks it’s important to note that the slaves who built the White House were well-fed and decently housed.
[UPDATED JULY 28, 29]. According to two US national polls at the start of this week on Monday, July 25, “Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump tied going into Democratic convention” and (still worse) “Donald Trump bounces into the lead.”
And then, very early on Wednesday, July 27, even the Associated Press was reporting : “Sanders loyalists warn of party split in wake of Clinton victory.” (Despite a July 26 New York Daily News column by ardent Sanders loyalist Shaun King, headlined “To stop Donald Trump, I’ll be voting for Hillary Clinton.”)
Watching the second evening of the Democrat convention on TV Tuesday night, I was more impressed myself by Bernie Sanders’s own motion to make Hillary Clinton’s nomination unanimous.
“Panel speakers at the Native American Council on the first day of the Democratic National Convention included, from left, Charles Galbraith (Navajo), Rion Ramirez (Saquamish), Jodi Gillette (Standing Rock Sioux) and Kimberly Teehee (Cherokee).” Photo : Suzette Brewer.
And I was most impressed by the image of the current US Democratic party floating up from the state-by-state reporting of the vote that preceded Bernie’s final declaration of party unity. (Despite the press-reported hurt feelings of a 22-year-old “college student from Flint, Michigan, who expects the Democratic Party to break apart over Clinton’s victory.”)
Then, at 9 AM (and updated just after noon) on Wednesday, July 27, the excellent Éric Grenier was reporting that : “According to the CBC’s new Presidential Poll Tracker, which you can follow throughout the campaign to see where the race to the White House stands, Clinton retains a narrow lead with 44.6 per cent to Trump’s 42.8 per cent in a weighted average of polls.”
America Ferrera and Lena Dunham at 2016 DNC.
There has as well been much applause for Michelle Obama’s speech on Monday night and Bill Clinton’s on Tuesday night. (I was also especially impressed by Cory Booker — and I think I mostly agree with Amy Davidson’s Bill Clinton reservations in the New Yorker.)
President Obama will no doubt do brilliantly yet again tonight. And there have been more than a few other impressive TV clips from African Americans, Alicia Keys, business gurus, handicapped individuals (remember FDR), Hispanic Americans, movie stars, Native Americans, police officers, politicians, professional comedians, and on and on, at what was starting to look like a pretty smart and well-executed convention by the end of Tuesday night.
For me so far, however, the most compelling part of all the “great political theatre” (Chris Matthews, I think) was still the image of the current US Democratic party floating up from the state-by-state reporting of the vote, that finally officially confirmed Hillary Rodham Clinton’s status as 2016 Democratic presidential nominee.
UPDATE JULY 28, 3:30 AM : On the evening of Wednesday, July 27 in the city of brotherly love President Obama did in fact do brilliantly yet again — his best speech ever on some accounts : a mix of farewell address and passionate advocacy for his successor Hillary Clinton (who finally joined him onstage at the end!).
Other great speeches were delivered by business magnate, political Independent, and former NY City mayor Michael Bloomberg (a cutting attack on Donald Trump : “I’m a New Yorker, and I know a con when I see one”), Barack Obama’s Vice President (and “friend and brother”) Joe Biden, and (quite surprisingly to me) Hillary’s Vice Presidential running mate, the social-gospelling former Governor of Virginia, Senator Tim Kaine.
Whatever else, the Democrats finally do seem to be getting some kind of compelling act together for the fateful general election of 2016 — as the party of democratic change (in Bernie’s spirit) and traditional American optimism and can-do conviction. Will it be enough to defeat the Dystopian Donald? Only the next 100 days will finally tell … Meanwhile, I was happy to be happily blown away last night.
UPDATE JULY 29, 12 NOON : The big question before Hillary Rodham Clinton’s most important speech in her life last night was could she pick up and run with the big boosts from the two previous nights at the DNC in the city of brotherly love.
For what it’s worth I agree that she will never be the orator that her husband and President Obama are. (Though I also like the view I hear on TV, sometimes at any rate and even from some Republicans, that Obama is the best American presidential orator since Lincoln.)
At the same time, I felt myself that Hillary’s 56-minute performance last night was close enough for jazz. And President Obama’s remarks the night before have finally convinced me that she is altogether an excellent choice for Commander in Chief of Democracy in America in 2016.
Note as well, of course, that Canadians almost always vote Democratic in American elections. And resolute exclusively Canadian citizen as I am, I of course cannot actually vote on November 8 in any case. May the best woman nonetheless win.
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