Obama ‘passes the baton’ to Hillary

U.S. President summons the charisma and oratory that catapulted him to the White House eight years ago, to enthuse the country to rally behind her.

Barack Obama summoned the charisma and oratory that catapulted him to the White House eight years ago, to enthuse the country to rally behind Hillary Clinton on Wednesday night. Her victory in the November presidential election is essential, not only for the completion of the agenda that he has set in motion, but also for the protection of American values and democracy, Mr. Obama said at the Democratic National Convention (DNC).

After being in office for eight years, Mr. Obama’s popularity remains high at 49 per cent approval ratings. Health care, gay rights, climate change, gun control, immigration reforms – Mr. Obama pushed the promises he made before the convention in 2008. Sometimes making progress, sometimes failing. “Change is never easy, and never quick; that we wouldn’t meet all of our challenges in one term, or one presidency, or even in one lifetime.…Yes, we’ve still got more work to do,” Mr. Obama said.

Against African-American President

In an election that Mr. Trump and other GOP leaders frame as the last opportunity to overturn the legacy of the first African-American President of America, the stakes are high for all supporters of Mr. Obama and him personally. The GOP derides the prospects of a Clinton presidency as a third term for Mr. Obama; for the Democrats and Mr. Obama's supporters that is a promise and even a lifeline. Mr. Obama’s endorsement of Ms. Clinton hinged on that premise of continuity.

“America, you've vindicated that hope these past eight years. And now I’m ready to pass the baton,” he said, concluding a 75-minute speech which reenacted the slogans and sentiments from 2008 that elected the first African-American President of the U.S. He called the country to rally behind who could be its first woman president – Hillary Clinton.

Crowd says "Yes, we can"

“And tonight, I ask you to do for Hillary Clinton what you did for me.” “Yes, we can,” the crowd chanted. “…there has never been a man or a woman -- not me, not Bill, nobody -- more qualified than Hillary Clinton to serve as President of the United States of America,” said Mr. Obama.

But there is more at stake than his legacy, Mr. Obama warned, comparing the politics of the Republican candidate Mr. Trump to fascism and Islamism. “…if you’re serious about our democracy, you can’t afford to stay home just because she might not align with you on every issue,” the President said, as several delegates kept their ‘No TPP’ placards up throughout hit speech. “….anyone who threatens our values, whether fascists or communists or jihadists or homegrown demagogues, will always fail in the end,” Mr. Obama said.

Scathing attack

“We don’t look to be ruled,” Mr. Obama said, in his most scathing attack on Mr. Trump, naming him several times. “He’s betting that if he scares enough people, he might score just enough votes to win this election,” the President said. “America isn’t about “yes, he will.” It’s about “yes, we can.”

“Don't boo, vote,” Mr. Obama said when the audience booed at the mention of Mr. Trump. Democratic strategists are concerned that the youth and the African-American voters may not be as enthusiastic as they were for Mr. Obama and the President specifically addressed the supporters of Bernie Sanders. “So if you agree that there’s too much inequality in our economy and too much money in our politics, we all need to be as vocal and as organized and as persistent as Bernie Sanders supporters have been during this election. We all need to get out and vote for Democrats up and down the ticket, and then hold them accountable until they get the job done.” “not just for a President, but for mayors, and sheriffs, and state’s attorneys, and state legislators.”

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Printable version | Jul 14, 2020 3:49:55 PM |

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