Barack Obama Speech At 2012 Democratic National Convention: Perseverance Replaces Change
There were no fireworks on Thursday night -- at least not of the literal variety. There were no Greek columns or open-air stadiums surrounded by majestic mountains. There were no calls for a new type of politics or for a turning of the page on the George W. Bush administration.
There was some glitz, some Hollywood stars and immaculate stagecraft. But the idea that a presidential candidate could himself become the embodiment of change was replaced with something less lofty but, perhaps, just as politically poignant. When President Barack Obama addressed the Democratic National Convention here at 10:25 p.m., both he and the crowd were animated by protectiveness for what's been accomplished so far in his presidency and hope to build on those achievements.
It was reflected not just in the tone of the week -- from a rousing and unexpected defense of the president's health care law on Tuesday night, to an invocation of the GOP-maligned clean energy subsidies, to a repeated reference to Vice President Joe Biden's favorite line "bin-Laden is dead and General Motors is alive" -- but in the arc of Obama's speech as well.
"I recognize that times have changed since I first spoke to this convention," Obama said. "The times have changed Ė- and so have I. Iím no longer just a candidate. Iím the president.
"I know what it means to send young Americans into battle, for I have held in my arms the mothers and fathers of those who didnít return. Iíve shared the pain of families whoíve lost their homes, and the frustration of workers whoíve lost their jobs. If the critics are right that Iíve made all my decisions based on polls, then I must not be very good at reading them. And while Iím proud of what weíve achieved together, Iím far more mindful of my own failings, knowing exactly what Lincoln meant when he said, 'I have been driven to my knees many times by the overwhelming conviction that I had no place else to go.'"
"America," Obama offered at the conclusion of his speech, "I never said this journey would be easy, and I won't promise that now. Yes, our path is harder -- but it leads to a better place. Yes our road is longer -- but we travel it together. We don't turn back."
More from the HuffPo
Re: Barack Obama Speech At 2012 Democratic National Convention: Perseverance Replaces Change
The meat of Obamaís speech was heavy on policy, as he laid out a series of specific goals for a second term ó like recruiting 100,000 math and science teachers, cutting tuition growth in half, and cutting the deficit by $4 trillion over the next 10 years.
Obama made a similar set of goals and pledges in his 2008 address, and several of them have not been met. Romneyís campaign, in a brief statement reacting to Obamaís speech, knocked the latest goals as more empty rhetoric.
Read more: Obama presents himself as 'tested' leader in convention speech, says -- Foxnews
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