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Convention Cheat Sheet: It's a Wrap!

Photo by Reurter/Jim Bourg

DENVER -- The buildup to Barack Obama's speech was so great, the stakes so high and the setting so dramatic that even some of his staunchest supporters wondered whether he could pull it off.

But by the time the confetti came raining down and the fireworks were launched over Invesco Field, Sen. Barack Obama, the first African American to clinch a presidential nomination, had achieved just about everything he had set out to do.

Among the tasks:

• Further the healing process within his party after a bitter primary battle with Hillary Rodham Clinton.

• Reintroduce -- and in some cases introduce -- himself and his wife to the country in a way that addressed concerns he was an elitist and didn't understand the concerns of average Americans.

• Launch a frontal attack on McCain, challenging the Arizona senator on national security -- a perceived strength for the GOP.

Attention now turns to St. Paul, Minnesota where the Republican National Convention is set to open on Monday (more on that below).

OUTSIDE THE HALL: Even as Obama was preparing to go on stage, various media outlets were reporting that the Republican National Convention might be postponed due to Hurricane Gustav, which is storming toward the Gulf Coast. Such a postponement would be a logistical nightmare, throwing into chaos an event that the party and hundreds of media organizations have been planning for the better part of the last two years. The optics for Republicans, however, are potentially problematic. Partying in Minnesota while a hurricane bears down on the Gulf Coast is a VERY tough juxtaposition for the GOP -- especially in the wake of the Bush Administration's handling of Hurricane Katrina.

INSIDE THE STADIUM: What a spectacle. Whether you liked it or not, it was something to behold. From the stage to the fireworks to the entertainment (Sheryl Crow good, Stevie Wonder only so-so) it was a night to remember. The question is whether Obama and Democrats will remember it as the beginning of something special or the beginning of the end.

BEST GIVEAWAY: The CNN Grill -- a restaurant that the network took over for the week -- has served as the hub for political gathering and gossip. And, for great swag. Among the items in the gift bag: a red CNN hat and a t-shirt that reads "I chowed down at the CNN Grill." Well played, CNN. Well played.

WORST TAKEWAY: The crowd was ready to explode for former Vice President Al Gore -- a hero of the party's left. And, while Gore had some good applause lines ("I believe in recycling but that's ridiculous") he bogged down in the specifics of global warming. It reminded us that Gore is a policy wonk, far more comfortable talking about carbon footprints than polling trends.

VIDEO OF THE DAY: Need to impress your friends and vanquish your enemies? Check out this wrapup of the festivities.

PARTY OF THE NIGHT: Google runs the world. So, it's no surprise that their party -- co-sponsored by Vanity Fair -- was THE hottest ticket of the week. Not only were RSVPs required but tickets needed to be picked up at the Ritz Carlton. The wait at times during the day was more than an hour. If you're wondering, yes, The Fix was invited.

By Chris Cillizza  |  August 29, 2008; 7:00 AM ET
Categories:  Convention Cheat Sheet  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: The Speech: How Did He Do?
Next: McCain Picks Palin


it makes me mad about Palin daughter is that if a poor kid in the inner city has a baby out of wedlock you guys put the girl down horribly.

Posted by: jisa | September 2, 2008 8:08 AM | Report abuse

we went from party coverage to Palin debate...

It's funny to read conservatives say experience doesn't matter when that was their whole attack plan on Obama up till friday.

Seriously, you're going to turn that one around on Democratics and call them the hypocrites? This isn't debating, it's schoolyard tag.

Posted by: ackbart | August 31, 2008 3:52 AM | Report abuse

Another bad day for the Baracky Hussein Obama campaign.

Every single day, he sounds more and more like a Republican. Saying anything that he thinks will gain him votes – he is a poll watcher with no convictions.

Baracky Hussein Obama has an extremely liberal voting record – he cannot run and hide from that fact.

Even his running mate and Hillary Clinton have stated, that he is not qualified to be President.

I hope that all Hispanic voters realize, that they will be at the bottom of the barrel if Baracky Hussein Obama is elected.

Baracky Hussein Obama will have to pacify the Black voters, after receiving 99 % of their vote in November.

Democrats for John McCain in 2008 – The Maverick is back.

Posted by: gary | August 30, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

It had applause coordinators, people cheering every-time Sen. Bo broke wind, people pretending to cry, fireworks polluting the environment; and misrepresentation, useless rhetoric and half truth by Sen. Bo.

Example of misrepresentation, useless rhetoric and half truths:

1) Sen. Bo said he was right about sending more troops to Afghanistan a few months ago, and Sen. McC was wrong. Fact, BO was wrong. Because the troops was kept in Iraq and not sent to Afghanistan, terrorism is now null in Iraq; and we can now shift troops to Afghanistan.

2) Sen. BO education policy is the same a the one Pres. Bush advocated when he was running for Pres. Sen. BO is not better than Pres. Bush; therefore Sen. BO education policy would not work also.

3) Sen. BO advocated saving world and working with world to solve world problems. Fact, America has been the greatest monetary donor to world problems, and America has been working with world to solve world problems.

Posted by: Pinky | August 29, 2008 10:26 PM | Report abuse

MOSCOW, Aug. 29 -- Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said Thursday that he had reason to think U.S. personnel were in the combat zone during the recent war in Georgia, adding that if confirmed, their presence suggested "someone in the United States" provoked the conflict to help one of the candidates in the American presidential race.

In Putin's first extended remarks defending Russia's military intervention in Georgia, which has drawn international condemnation, he blamed the Bush administration for failing to stop Georgian leaders from launching the Aug. 7 attack on the breakaway province of South Ossetia that sparked the war.

Speaking on CNN, Putin argued that the U.S. policy of training and supplying weapons to the Georgian army had emboldened the country to abandon long-standing negotiations over the future of South Ossetia and to try instead to seize the region by force, an assault that resulted in the deaths of Russian soldiers stationed there as peacekeepers.

Putin suggested that U.S. military advisers were working with Georgian forces that clashed with the Russian army, a prospect he described as "very dangerous."

"Even during the Cold War, during the harsh confrontation between the Soviet Union and the United States, we always avoided direct clashes between our civilians, even more so between our military personnel," he said in the interview, portions of which were also broadcast on Russian national television. "Ordinary experts, even if they teach military affairs, should not do so in combat zones, but in training areas and training centers," he added.

Putin said he based his assertions on information provided to him by the Russian military, but he offered no evidence and cautioned that his "suspicions" required further confirmation.

Earlier in the day, a senior Russian military official said at a news briefing that Russian troops had recovered an American passport in the rubble of a village near the South Ossetian capital of Tskhinvali, where a Georgian special forces unit had been based during the war.

"What was the purpose of that gentleman being among the special forces, and what is he doing today, I so far cannot answer," said Col. Gen. Anatoly Nogovitsyn, deputy chief of the general staff, holding up an enlarged color photocopy of the passport. He identified its owner as Michael Lee White, a resident of Houston, born in 1967, state-owned Vesti television reported.

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | August 29, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Watching the coverage was the best part for me.

C-SPAN is easily the best, because there's nobody talking, other than the person on the screen addressing the Convention.

Kristol and Barnes on Fox have become pathetic still hung-up on Bill Clinton eight years later.

The coterie of Republican pros on CCN (Larry King) after the acceptance speech all just spinning the expected criticism, except Ben Stein who did correctly point out the times when Obama promised things which were Reaganesque (and totally impractical).

Chris Matthews exceeding his "HEH!" quota.

These 'experts' were focused on trees for almost all of the four days and ignored the forest.

It really showed how shallow so many of the chattering class become when they transition from the printed page to being in front of the cameras.

All of the talking heads on all of the networks who complained for three days that there was no Oomph, no red meat, no 'There' there; and then all of a sudden after Sen. Obama's speech couldn't speak more glowingly about how well choreographed the whole thing was. Made me wish I had thought to watch Comedy Central to see if they had any coverage. At least we know that when they look foolish it is intentional.

A few do provide valuable insight, such as Gergen and Buchanan (when he's talking political process, not philosophy).

Otherwise, the Over the Air networks may have stumbled onto the best non-C-SPAN coverage - One hour per night - even if it was only for monetary reasons.

Posted by: Nor'Easter | August 29, 2008 1:30 PM | Report abuse

I thought Gore had one of the better speeches. While many other speakers repeated the same info about Obama, Gore took the opportunity of a rapt audience to apply the mantra, "Obama is good," to a specific issue.

Posted by: liannehdc | August 29, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

The chances of the (R)'s matching the energy and enthusiasm of the (D) convention are nil. How do we counter that? Pick a total unknown for a running mate and expect her to debate Joe Biden and win. NOT! Inexplicable choice after witnessing the most amazing convention ever, it's like he wants to lose. Okay with me, thanks for helping us elect Obama, johnny.

Posted by: PreAmeriKKKan | August 29, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse



Posted by: fel121 | August 29, 2008 12:48 PM | Report abuse


You have got to be kidding me!!

ha ha ha ha ha, ho ho ho ho, he he he he!!!
This is great, wait until Biden get this broad in a debate, I wonder how good her sandwhich making skills are.

Hey b^%&ch, get me a beer!

Posted by: fel121 | August 29, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

I thought Gore had one of the better speeches. While many other speakers repeated the same info about Obama, Gore took the opportunity of a rapt audience to apply the mantra, "Obama is good," to a specific issue.

Posted by: liannehdc | August 29, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

...I haven't laughed this loudly since Rudi Guiliani talked on Frauds News on the so called off shore drilling by CHINA on the coast of Cuba....which was a FRAUD also

Five reasons why Sarah Palin is a laugh-out
loud ridiculious choice!!!

Seriously? Sarah Palin for VP? It's one thing for millions of voters to put forward a sitting senator as a possible commander in chief, but for John McCaint
to hand-pick a first-term governor of a tiny state is bizarre.

Here are five reasons why, if she is the pick, this is a huge mistake:

1. There goes McCain's best argument.

He cannot say Obama is not ready but she is. Obama started organizing his campaign for president the same month she was sworn in to lead the third-smallest state's government.

2. She has no base of support.

Obama won his senate seat with 3,597,456 votes, that's more than five times the population of Alaska. He has won more than 18 million votes in a long, tough primary that tested him and prepared him.

How has she been tested?

She lost her first bid for statewide office, then won the governor's office with 114,697 votes, not a majority, but enough to take office.

And apparently, enough to set her up for the Oval Office.

3. The "woman card" will backfire.

She's no Hillary Clinton..none of the MEN
in the RNC/GOP lie machine could have come
as well it would be different if she were known to anyone or qualified or something.

4. Alaska, a corrupt hinterland.

Yes, she is a hard-nosed, tough reformer. But the McCaint campaign will have to deal with the fact that Alaska seems like a foreign land as corrupt as Louisiana.

It's longtime senator will stand trial smack dab in the middle of this campaign season, and McCaint may have to vote to remove him from office.

Yes, they can spin it that she is someone cleaning up the mess up there, but what Americans realize is that they don't know much about what goes on up there. Will they be comfortable with her?

5. Was this McCaints choice?

It seems clear that McCaintwanted to go with Lieberman but was talked out of it by the right wing of his party. Rove admits calling Lieberman to ask him to pull his name out. Bush lost his way because he never stood up to Rove et. al.

McCaint' once again is headed down the same path to ruin and political suicide

....So McCaint wanted a VP with nothing to add but an ample laughable.....and sorely pathetic

McCaint..."The candidate does not speak for the Campaign...."

And what about this.....

So Palin once again bows to the Alaska Outdoors Council which is so worried it might not have enough Alaskan wildlife to kill for trophies, eh?

The federal biologists have shown the polar bears are in trouble.

Alaska state biologists have warned they are in trouble. Even the Natives along the Northern Coastal Plain have noted how things are getting worse for the polar bears.

But, like Palin, there are commenters in this discussion who are willing to sell Alaska down the drain for a few oil-soaked dollars. I can see the true VECO mentality (?) is alive and well and can be found here in their comments.

Palin allows airborne killing of wolves and bears, wants polar bears to remain huntable for trophies, and has generally shown she is even worse than Murkowski could ever have been when it comes to selling out our wildlife to the highest bidder.

...Well if Dick (Satan) Cheney Bush2's VP can kill small fowl from his limousine and shoot other hunters in the face ...great choice McCaint ...a great choice.....

And I guess its all true that.....anothe VP can shoot from flying airplanes heliocopters and other flying dirigibles (balloons)..its okay...

"The Candidate does not speak for the Campaign...."

Posted by: AlexP1 | August 29, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Asper girl says:

"As a follow up to my below post, picking a female VP makes it very difficult for Obama to execute the second part of his strategy, painting McCain as the same as Bush."

You dont know your candidate very well do you. Lets see she had her ex-brother in law kicked off the highway patrol. She is under investigation for her role with big oil and her husband is in bed with big oil. Yep she sure doesnt sound like bush..NOT.

Thanks for handing Obama the election....

Posted by: Say What | August 29, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

You know it is funny, the GOP lovers keep squawking about lack of experience. Wasnt Dubya supposed to bring all this experience of working across party line? Wasnt he the first president with an MBA? And what are his results. A country more divided than it has ever been in our history. More debt on his watch racked up than any president in history. Dubya proved experience means squat. Its how you act not how you talk that matters....

Posted by: American First | August 29, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse


John McCain has been on the Straight Talk Express for 10 years SPEAKING SPECIFICALLY about the reforms he would like in Washington.

Obama focus-groups the word "change" and all of a sudden he is the real guy. Obama then has never really been that specific about what his changes are. I sense a bit of "me-tooism" from Obama - and it is a bit deceptive. "Maybe they won't notice that I am taking John McCain's straight talk express campaign themes." Also McCain will be NOTHING like Bush, they hate each other - another deception practiced by the Obama people.



Posted by: 37th&OStreet | August 29, 2008 6:15 AM

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | August 29, 2008 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Bye all, it's been real. I have some volunteering to do and donations to make.

Posted by: AsperGirl | August 29, 2008 10:59 AM | Report abuse

>>dl wrote: "I don't think so America knows Mccain just sold out the country for a politic tactical stunt the woman has no experience on diversity of economics no national experience with any issue if the 72 year old kicks the would we as a country. This woman is soooooo under qualified."

(1) Oh, tell me all about it. I'm really excited to hear all about how the Obama campaign is going to paint horrific pictures about what will happen if we elect an under-qualified, green candidate! McCain is brilliant! Ha Ha Ha!

(2) Palin is the only person on either ticket who has executive experience.



McCain is brilliant. All those classes on outflanking your opponent and luring them onto open ground and etc. has made him one hell of a strategist.

I'm so impressed with McCain's brilliant, Obama-crippling pick.

What an awesome man and president John McCain would be.

You know, this really bears out the power of McCain's "maverick" appeal. People don't tend to be "mavericks" unless they have tru insight and vision in which they are strongly led personally.

McCain is already showing the depth of leadership insight that makes Obama look like a little kid.

What an awesome presdient he would be, after all those years of Bush incompetence and retardation, and what an amazing thing he has done for the Clinton women.


Posted by: AsperGirl | August 29, 2008 10:58 AM | Report abuse

when do we start talking about the incredible Republican corruption in Alaska? There are MANY arrests and indictments of Alaska's State Government's elected officials.

From Wikipedia:

Posted by: jersey john | August 29, 2008 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Well, this is it. I'm off the board. I have things to do now as I'm supporting the McCain-Palin 2008 ticket!

It's been real.

McCain-Palin 2008!
McCain-Palin 2008!
McCain-Palin 2008!
McCain-Palin 2008!
McCain-Palin 2008!
McCain-Palin 2008!
McCain-Palin 2008!
McCain-Palin 2008!

Posted by: AsperGirl | August 29, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Uh-oh!! McCain is looking pretty Somebody call a medic!

Posted by: donnie jeffcoat | August 29, 2008 10:51 AM | Report abuse

I am actually excited that mccain could be so shallow.

I guess it is the final stop to get rid of making good choices...

for ones that are political stunts.

Posted by: dl | August 29, 2008 10:48 AM | Report abuse


Get Michelle, Jill, and Hillary on the front lines against Palin. Biden, school Palin on foreign knowledge during the debate and do not go anywhere near a gaffe. You are better than this. DO NOT go for a culture war edge. I repeat, DO NOT try to edge her on the culture wars. You'll just be accused of gender-card BS, which is inevitable anyway, so just lessen the damage as much as possible. Hopefully, then, she will show herself to be a spur-of-the-moment pick without real thought on McCain's part when she reveals a shocking lack of expertise on the issues other than energy.

Posted by: DNC | August 29, 2008 10:47 AM | Report abuse


I don't think so

America knows Mccain just sold out the country for a politic tactical stunt

the woman has no experience on diversity of economics

no national experience with any issue

if the 72 year old kicks the bucket...

so would we as a country.

This woman is soooooo under qualified.

the fact that mcCain picked her over Kay bailey Hutchinson is

this is just hysterical that he could pick the worst VP choice he could...

this woman hurts women.

Go look at her policies...typical woman sell out.

Posted by: dl | August 29, 2008 10:47 AM | Report abuse

It's Palin

get this guy to retire...

great judgment John mcCain

if you go...I guess you think we should go too.

Posted by: dl | August 29, 2008 10:44 AM | Report abuse

As a follow up to my below post, picking a female VP makes it very difficult for Obama to execute the second part of his strategy, painting McCain as the same as Bush.

Obama clearly took up his strategy expecting McCain to pick one of the old white men on the short list. McCain faked out Obama by sending fake Romney and Pawlenty and other signals all week.

Obama's goose is cooked.


Posted by: AsperGirl | August 29, 2008 10:44 AM | Report abuse

For a moment during Al Gore's speech, I started to think, "Woah, this is a killjoy." But Al Gore was there to remind us that, while it's fun to party, if we don't fix this place up a bit, the party's over. While attempting to sober us all up, Gore delivered a skillfully passionate, forceful, down-to-business sermon. We didn't need every speaker to just come out, pump up the crowd some more, and keep the party rolling. Every speaker served his or her part. Al Gore was the only speaker who could have stepped onto that stage to put these particularly high stakes into proper perspective. I don't know of any Republicans who could or would do the same.

Posted by: dognabbit | August 29, 2008 10:41 AM | Report abuse

The convention is over and Obama's cooked his goose.

The reason for his Biden pick is now clear.

In the wake of the Russian occupation of Georgia and the success of "the Surge" in Iraq, the only major area of his own weakness that Obama couldn't credibly roll up into a ball of recrimination against the Bush Administration is foreign policy and national security. For weeks, Obama's been pinned down into either being silent or making national security comments that echo the McCain ones, because making ones that were different than McCain's would have clearly been incompetent. Obama has been unable to take bold positions for, say, pulling out of Iraq now or that McCain and Bush were wrong to back a surge, or that he supports Russian's behavior in Georgia.

If you look at the Obama weaknesses and vulnerabilities as being sorted into 2 bins, (1) those areas on which Obama can ridicule Bush (economy, energy, global warming, etc) and (2) those areas on which Obama can't credibly ridicule Bush on account of his own positions this Summer echoing McCain (foreign affairs and national security), it's clear that Biden shores up Obama's vulnerability in (2).

The rest of Obama's Fall strategy out of the gate is clear: everything in (1) is rolled up into a ball of recrimination against the Bush Administration. So Obama makes 2 arguments. Firstly, Obama feels that he can't be attacked on those fronts because the Bush Administration has been so incompetent on them, and his own vulnerabilities there are innoculated against attack so long as he can make McCain out to be the same as Bush. Secondly, Obama, if he successfully balls up this attack against Bush for throwing at McCain (by painting McCain as "the same"), then Obama can bash McCain with the Bush legacy.

To win the election with this attack strategy, Obama only has to successfully execute 2 things:

(1) successfully take all his non-Biden weakness areas in which he has no experience and glaring vulnerabilities: economy, energy, etc. and roll them up into a ball of recrimination against the Bush Administration, making his weak areas part of the stand on which he makes his attack against Bush


(2) successfully force McCain to be identified as "McSame", and that electing him would be the "Third Bush Term"

If Obama can successfully execute the two above objectives this Fall, he can beat McCain.

The whole convention, all the speeches, etc, built up to support those two. Indeed, after months of trying to find some way to attack McCain, reciting a passionate litany of complaints against Bush and then using it to bash McCain as a Bushie-by-extension, seems to be the ONLY theme of the convention apart from the narcissistic focus on Obama, his race and his wife.

The problem, of course, is that if McCain can prevent Obama from successfully executing either (1) or (2), Obama's got nothing in his quiver against McCain, and he will have wasted his Biden pick. If Obama fails to execute either of the two major thrusts of this strategy, he's more or less weaponless against McCain.

Posted by: AsperGirl | August 29, 2008 10:41 AM | Report abuse

Governor Palin is an Obama supporter but an environmental disaster.

“I am pleased to see Senator Obama acknowledge the huge potential Alaska’s natural gas reserves represent in terms of clean energy and sound jobs
Governor Palin also acknowledged the Senator’s proposal to offer $1,000 rebates to those struggling with the high cost of energy. “This is a tool that must be on the table to buy us time until our long-term energy plans can be put into place. (Obama’s $1,000 rebate).
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - The state of Alaska will sue to challenge the recent listing of polar bears as a threatened species, Gov. Sarah Palin announced Wednesday. She and other Alaska elected officials fear a listing will cripple oil and gas development in prime polar bear habitat off the state's northern and northwestern coasts A U.S. Geological Survey study completed last year as part of the petition process predicted polar bears in Alaska could be wiped out by 2050

She also supports Aerial Hunting of Alaska’s Wolves.

Political lightweight.
Can't wait for her debate with Biden.

Posted by: jersey john | August 29, 2008 10:41 AM | Report abuse


I had to LOL when I read your critique of Palin. How does Obama have more experience than her? I am waiting to LOL with your reasoning or lack thereof. Obama has done very little and he has jumped from job to job before ever accomplishing anything. However, I guess a guy can be president because he lacks experience, but a female that’s a different story. You show your true chauvinistic tendencies.

Palin may not have the full resume of Biden or McCain, but she unlike any of the males in the running does have executive experience. She is also a person of principle who has kept her ethics even after getting elected. Obama on the other hand will throw his ethics (forgoing public financing so he can raise more money from lawyers and such) under the bus to get elected.

Posted by: sltiowa | August 29, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

The bankruptcy act change Obama has proposed is a fundamentally change from all prior existing bankruptcy law--it is not a change specific to the most recent version of the law. At present, most worker pensions are placed so far down the list that they are't paid at all in disbursement of funds in the closing of a Chapter 11. Contrastingly, CEO awards are frequently protected. The notion that Obama and Biden disagree on this law change proposal is laughable.

Posted by: Bankruptcy | August 29, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

I invite you the Airport restroom and toileting facilities of the Minneapolis airport where I will deliver the keynote address for the Republican National Convention. Some of my party's best ideas come directly from the toilets, so what better place from which to deliver my speech.

After my speech, I invite all hard bodied studs to stick around for toilet hijinks and hot man to man action. It's going to be love GOPStyle™. Karl "Hot Karl" Rove will be there to spread his views and his hot fleshy cheeks.

Posted by: Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID) | August 29, 2008 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Al Gore's speech was indeed awesome, fiery, and well-crafted. The Republicans have labeled Al Gore as boring and so forth and have kept at it so long that even the MSM are using it. It is time to remember that it is often what people say and not the eloquence of their speech that is important. I am sure that the McCainites will remind us of this when their candidate speaks the next time.

On another note, I'll repeat what I said last night. Obama took the torch from the preceeding generation, and he is off and running. His acceptance speech was the right balance of all the essential elements. He laid open for all to see the stark differences between him and John McCain. In a very succinct way, he set forth his plan of governance and his program. Obama follows in the tradition of our greatest Presidents.

The Republican Party spokespeople missed another wonderful opportunity last night to take the high road. Obama gave them a chance. Obama held out a hand to begin a debate on the issues. Instead, the Republicans slapped him in the face yet another time. It is obvious that the Republicans would prefer a duel with guns rather than a debate with words. You see, there is a real choice between the two major political parties in this country.

Stay tuned! Obama, the statesman, will be head-to-head against McCain the partisan. Obama the orator will be head to head against McCain the one-liner. As with most one-liners, there is a one-line retort. Obama showed us that last night. (It was something like, McCain might follow Osama to the gates of Hell, but he is not willing to follow him to his cave.)

Yes, people, God has a sense of humor, even in the wake of tragedy. Look at the evidence: (1) Barack Hussein Obama is a candidate for President of the United States after the U.S. took a war of choice to Iraq to depose Hussein, (2) Gustav is threatening in the Gulf to finish off what Katrina did not and in time for the Republican convention as His reminder about the past, and (3) despite the overpowering might of our military, we are still fighting in a third-world country after five years. God once again has shown us that it is not the might of the mighty that wins wars but those who follow His will. Yes, He used Bush to teach us this valuable lesson. The question is, have we learned the lesson?

Posted by: Earl C | August 29, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse


"Now is the time to change our bankruptcy laws, so that your pensions are protected ahead of CEO bonuses..."

-- Barack Obama acceptance speech, 8/28/08

Just one problem: that bankruptcy law, the one that critics say eviscerated consumer rights and served the interests of the banks and credit card companies, was partly written and sponsored by Obama's pick for vice president, Delaware Sen. Joe Biden.

And Biden's son has been a lobbyist for the credit card industry.

This could be a huge problem for Obama out of the gate. Obama's goals and promises, as stated in the speech, are at odds with the legislation authored by his running mate, who is accused by consumer advocates of doing the bidding for the credit card and banking industries.

In yesterday's Politico, there was an item about speculation that Obama may be forced to ask Biden to withdraw.

How will the Washington press corps, which appears to open worship Obama and cuts him every break, handle this one?

And will McCain, who backed the same legislation, use this issue against the Obama-Biden ticket? The betting is that he will not; that is probably why Obama picked Biden despite his public record on the bankruptcy issue.

Was that a miscalculation? Much depends on whether the press will seize upon this story as an example of hypocrisy on the part of the Obama campaign, or simply ignore the story in deference to their personal favorite in the presidential race.

Posted by: Outside the Box | August 29, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

I must take issue. Stevie Wonder has never, NEVER been "so-so." The Fix should be so "so-so."

Posted by: FlownOver | August 29, 2008 10:01 AM | Report abuse

Al Gore's speech was AWESOME! It was fiery, well delivered and well recieved.

Obama was the star by far, but Al Gore held his own!

Posted by: chadibuins | August 29, 2008 9:28 AM | Report abuse

I was encouraged by Obama's speech. Although I am older than McCain, I feel younger than Obama. I used to be a staunch republican, but after Bush's 8 years, he converted me to the opposite party by his attacks on Science (refusal to support Stem Cell Research at Caltech where I graduated in 1951) making the deficit the largest ever for a war which he started without provocation.

I believe the presidential primaries are way too long and divert the attention of the Congress and people to other than the core problems of the country.

I am disappointed that neither candidate mentioned the fact that the US has become a prison state by having more prisoners on an absolute or per capita basis, and what they are going to do to reverse this trend toward a prison state.

I firmly believe that Obama is better situated to change the direction of the US Government to a more positive one than the negative attitude of McCain. I favor people who have a positive attitude like Obama.

I don't favor the negative attacks McCain has made against Obama. I must say that when I was 47 years old I was more capable of running the country than when I was 72 years old or at my present 79 years.

We need fresh new ideas, not worn out old ideas.

Jon Schiller, PhD and Author of Novels, a true story "Irrational Indictment & Imprisonment" available from Amazon, as well as being well known as author of books about Options Trading.

Posted by: Jon Schiller | August 29, 2008 9:13 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: hdimig | August 29, 2008 9:04 AM | Report abuse


so both Pawlenty and Romney will not be in Ohio today...hmmm

could it be...the

"Pray He Doesn't Have a Heart Attack" Ticket

is who he is going to choose

Mccain Palin

that shows great judgement on his part...oy.

yeah political reasons picking a woman who is absolutely beyond unequipped to be President if something happened to him.

really good judgement Sen Mccain. lol

Ridiculous if that ends up being his

A woman who has NO Record and no recorded judgment or risk who is anti almost every woman's issue out there.

I guess I should be happy that his chances would get very slim...because America could not risk having a President as old as he is with his history pick a VP as ill equipped as a political stunt choice like Palin...

and that really isn't overstating it.

Posted by: dl | August 29, 2008 8:48 AM | Report abuse

A Dobson disciple prayed for storms over Denver Thursday night; not a very bright action, then again these "followers" were never know for their brightness. In stead, the hurricane season is giving the RNC a major "storm" over their own convention and a likely well toned down event in Minneapolis (logistics and costs would be prohibitive to change). After all the turmoil the Bush Administration and the Republican led Congress has given to the American people and the world over the past eight years, they themselves deserve no less than their own. Bush does McCain one more time!

Posted by: Lou R | August 29, 2008 8:39 AM | Report abuse

All in all, this was a typical Democratic Convention--way too many speeches of highly varying quality--but the big ones were good and truly, the convention did what it needed to. It is now up to Obama to bear in on the campaign.

I do think it is interesting that the personal dimension (with the exception of Michelle Obama) seems to be missing--by that I mean the testimonials from people who KNOW Obama and have worked with him. He has the endorsements, now he has got to fill in the blanks and draw a much more complete picture. I can't wait.

Posted by: dch | August 29, 2008 8:23 AM | Report abuse

and remember 40,000 of those attendees last night registered and had to volunteer for a week for the campaign just to get in I hear.

Just from swing state...

yeah not so dumb that big stadium.

Posted by: dl | August 29, 2008 8:15 AM | Report abuse

Chris, I enjoy your concise articulate analysis and always look forward to seeing you on MSNBC...wish you had your own show.

Posted by: granny001 | August 29, 2008 8:08 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: me | August 29, 2008 8:04 AM | Report abuse

Men who have served as speechwriters like Buchanan and Gergen think it was the right speech at the right time. It was well delivered. It may have served its purpose. However:
I think there were no memorable lines, it was relatively humorless, and it was not up to the standards of his best speeches. While he has yet to deliver a bad stump speech, this was merely a stump speech. I suppose this makes BHO a victim of my expectations - I hardly would have bothered to criticize this speech except for the generic uber-promises of acceptance speeches and State-of-the-Union addresses, if it had come from a less gifted speaker.

Posted by: MarkInAustin | August 29, 2008 7:54 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Kan Da Shan | August 29, 2008 7:51 AM | Report abuse

The speech can only do so much. It certainly got the attention of the swing voters, but he needs to back it up on the ground and in the debates. But what an August boost…

Posted by: mpp | August 29, 2008 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Chris, you capture the dilemma that faces the GOP as a hurricane nears. Certainly, Bush and McCain must put compassion about the need for partisan speeches, but not seem at all opportunistic. Thanks for your analysis of the convention, which spared us the bleeding obvious comments that were too often repeated endlessly on TV. Read more of my thoughts on my blog.

Posted by: Kan Da Shan | August 29, 2008 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Chris, good info on the freebies, but you didn't accept any, did you? Washington Post ethics alert! Not even a free cocktail weenie for you!

Posted by: Party Police | August 29, 2008 7:30 AM | Report abuse

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