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Clinton: Obama showing way to more modern economy

Former President Bill Clinton addresses the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., on Wednesday.

Former President Bill Clinton addresses the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., on Wednesday.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- In an impassioned speech that rocked the Democratic National Convention, former President Bill Clinton proclaimed Wednesday night, "I know we're coming back" from the worst economic mess in generations and appealed to hard-pressed Americans to stick with Barack Obama for a second term in the White House.

Obama strode onstage as Clinton wound up his speech, and the former president bowed. Obama pulled him into an embrace as thousands of delegates jammed into the convention hall roared their approval.

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Conceding that many struggling in a slow-recovery economy don't yet feel improvement, Clinton said circumstances are indeed getting better, "and if you'll renew the president's contract you will feel it."

To the cheers of thousands of Democrats packed into their convention hall, he said of Obama, "I want to nominate a man who is cool on the outside but who burns for America on the inside."

Clinton spoke as Obama's high command worked to control the political fallout from an embarrassing retreat on the party platform, just two months from Election Day in the tight race with Republican challenger Mitt Romney.

Under criticism from Romney, the Obama camp abruptly rewrote the day-old document to insert a reference to God and to declare that Jerusalem "is and will remain the capital of Israel." Some delegates objected loudly, but Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, presiding in the largely-empty hall, ruled them outvoted. White House aides said Obama had personally ordered the changes, but they did not disclose whether he had approved the earlier version

That dispute was far from the minds of most in the hall Wednesday night.

Obama's campaign hoped Clinton's speech would prove especially persuasive in an era of sluggish economic growth and 8.3 percent unemployment. Clinton is exceptionally popular 12 years after he left office, particularly among white men, a group among whom Obama polls poorly.

The speech was deemed so important to Obama's election prospects that convention planners delayed his formal nomination to a second term until Clinton had finished speaking. The familiar roll call of the states began well after television prime time in the eastern part of the country, and was on pace to last until well past midnight.

The speech was vintage Clinton, overlong for sure, insults delivered with a folksy grin, references to his own time in office and his wife Hillary, all designed to improve Obama's shaky re-election prospects.

The convention hall rocked with delegates' applause and cheers the former president strode onstage to sounds of "Don't Stop Thinking About Tomorrow," his 1992 campaign theme song.

He sought to rebut every major criticism Republicans leveled against the president at their own convention last week in Tampa, and said that in fact, since 1961, far more jobs have been created under Democratic presidents than when Republicans sat in the White House â€" by a margin of 42 million to 24 million.

Clinton accused Republicans of proposing "the same old policies that got us into trouble in the first place" and led to a near financial meltdown. Those, he said, include efforts to provide "tax cuts for higher-income Americans, more money for defense than the Pentagon wants and ... deep cuts on programs that help the middle class and poor children."

"As another president once said, 'There they go again,'" he said, quoting Ronald Reagan, who often uttered the remark as a rebuke to Democrats.

There was another reference to Reagan, whom Democrats routinely accused of advocating "trickle down economics" that favored the rich.

" We simply cannot afford to turn the reins of government over to someone who will double down on trickle-down," Clinton said.

Obama flew into his convention city earlier in the day and arrived in the hall in time for Clinton's speech.

On an unsettled convention day, aides scrapped plans for Obama to speak to a huge crowd in a 74,000 seat football stadium, citing the threat of bad weather in a city that has been pelted by heavy downpours in recent days.

"We can't do anything about the rain. The important thing is the speech," said Washington Rey, a delegate from Sumter, S.C.

That and the eight-week general election campaign about to begin between Obama and Republican challenger Romney, who spent his second straight day in Vermont preparing for this fall's debates with Obama.

Clinton shared prime time with Elizabeth Warren, the Democratic candidate for a Republican-held Senate seat in Romney's Massachusetts. For many years "our middle class has been chipped, squeezed and hammered," she said.

In a tight race for the White House and with control of the Senate at stake, Democrats signaled unmistakable concern about the growing financial disadvantage they confront. Officials said Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who was Obama's first White House chief of staff, was resigning as national co-chair of the president's campaign to help raise money for a super PAC that supports the his re-election.

Unlike candidates, outside groups can solicit donations of unlimited size from donors. At the same time, federal law bars coordination with the campaigns.

Inside the hall, a parade of speakers praised Obama and criticized the Republicans, sometimes harshly.

Sandra Fluke, a law student whom congressional Republicans would not let testify at a hearing on contraceptives, said if Republicans win in the fall, women will wake up to "an America in which access to birth control is controlled by people who will never use it, in which politicians redefine rape."

Clinton's speech marked the seventh consecutive convention he has spoken to party delegates, and the latest twist in a relationship with Obama that has veered from frosty to friendly. The two men clashed in 2008, when Obama outran Hillary Rodham Clinton's wife for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Clinton, then a New York senator, now Obama's Secretary of State, was in East Timor as the party met half a world away. She made a cameo appearance on the huge screens inside the Time Warner Cable Arena, though, turning up in a video that celebrated the 12 Democratic women senators currently in office.

Republicans have suddenly discovered a lot to like about Clinton â€" a man they impeached in late 1998 when they ran the House and he sat in the Oval Office.

Ryan made no mention of those unpleasantries when he told a campaign audience in Iowa, "Under President Clinton we got welfare reform. President Obama is rolling back welfare reform.

"President Clinton worked with Republicans in Congress to have a budget agreement to cut spending. President Obama, a gusher of new spending."

Independent fact checkers have repeatedly debunked the claim about Obama's welfare proposals. Nor did the Wisconsin lawmaker mention that under a balanced budget compromise with Clinton to rein in federal spending, Republicans agreed to create a new benefit program that provides health care for lower-income children and others ineligible for Medicaid.

The changes in the platform came after the Republicans criticized an earlier decision to strip out a reference to God.

Romney said that "suggests a party that is increasingly out of touch with the mainstream of the American people. ... I think this party is veering further and further away into an extreme wing that Americans don't recognize."

Romney had declared in a summertime trip there that Jerusalem was the country's capital. U.S. policy for years has held that the city's status is a matter for negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis, and Democrats said at the time he was pandering to Jewish voters in the United States.

The switch puts the platform in line with what advisers say is the president's personal view, if not the policy of his administration. "Jerusalem is and will remain the capital of Israel," it says. "The parties have agreed that Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations. It should remain an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths."

Comments

waltspecht 2 years ago

No improvement in 4 years. Still less, not more jobs, unless you are an insider picking up free taxpayer money. Plus, he never had sex with that women. Now, what are you gonna believe?

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FryarTuk 2 years ago

Well if that woman is Monica Lewinsky, I'd say W would have done a lot better with her in the White House than Turd Blossom.

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RedEric 2 years ago

What a great wonderful speech, especially if you enjoy being lied to. It is already obvious where Obama is getting the money...our money that we paid into social security and Medicare. Obamacare has 21 new taxes in it. Phoebe will be taxed. Republicans are called greedy because they want to keep what they earned, what they worked for. Democrats want to keep what you earned, but are not considered greedy. Democrats cheered every time the speaker mentioned a giveaway program. People need a giveaway program after they have failed. Logic says that theDemocratic party is a party of failures. Why does it make them so happy to take money away from people like me who worked for 50 years and give it to people who don't like to work and/or can't speak English?

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snakedr 2 years ago

You peoples just will not give this man credit for nothing, 4 more year get ready for it Mr. Clinton made a very good honest speech ,

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ObjectiveEyes 2 years ago

"Clinton" and "truth." Now, there are two words you rarely see in the same sentence...

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VSU 2 years ago

You peoples? 4 more year? You put an s where it is not suppose to be, and leave off the s where it is suppose to be. Go figure!

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dingleberry 2 years ago

Right, we will not give this man Obama "credit for nothing". Usually, credit is reserved for positive things. Rather, we are having a hard time giving him "blame for anything". But on the subj of Bill, he was head and shoulders higher than Obama or his other buddy Jimmy Carter in the standings with many. Compared to the "O", he is missed.

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Sister_Ruby 2 years ago

You're wrong, snakedr. I give him complete credit for a 50% increase in the National debt, from $10 Trillion to $16 Trillion and climbing with NO SIGN OF ANYTHING BUT A MINIMUM ANNUAL INCREASE OF ANOTHER $1 TRILLION PER YEAR GOING FORWARD. In fact "HIS PLAN" promises a $4 Trillion decrease over the next decade. THAT DOESN'T EVEN OFFSET THE $5 TRILLION HE HAS ADDED IN THE PAST FOUR YEARS!!! Some plan...........hahahaha.

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chinaberry25 2 years ago

Are you for real or are you one of those dodo's trying to imitae satire? My dog got bit by a rattlesnake yesterday and I would not want you to treat her.

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ObjectiveEyes 2 years ago

An interesting development yesterday at the DNC that is not being reported much...they actually had to vote to "...recognize Jerusalem as the capitol of Israel and put God back into the platform..." Even the vote was deemed "approved", if you watched the actual vote the it was actually overwhelmingly rejected. The attendees booed and hissed at the sham that 2/3 voted in favor. Obama apparently vetted and approved of the fact that the DNC would leave God out of the platform while throwing Israel under the bus. This should be of grave concern to all God-fearing Christians. But, of course, what do you expect out of a president that chides us for "...clinging to their guns and Bibles..." There are souvenirs available in Charlotte with Obama's picture on it with the quote, "For God so loved the world that he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish, but, have everlasting life. John 3:16" Scary stuff...God shall not be mocked.

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tywebb 2 years ago

that was one of the funniest videos i have seen in awhile! the guy on stage was stunned when he knew the crowd didn't want the ammendment to pass, so after 3 tries, he said it passed anyway! what a joke. I really thought i was watching an SNL skit!

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Sister_Ruby 2 years ago

Obama/Clinton's "Modern Economy" has arrived! 365,000 more people applied for unemployment last week.

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Sister_Ruby 2 years ago

May I translate Mr. BJ Clinton's remarks: "If you want a society that takes away what successful people have worked hard and taken risks for and gives it away to non-profits, lazy people who won't work, political buddies, and to countries that hate us.....then vote for Barack Obama and Joe Biden".

Pure and simple, that's what they stand for.

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VSU 2 years ago

Democrats say it will take 8 years to clean up the mess Bush made, that is nothing more than an excuse and alibi in case their administration fails the first 4 years.

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chinaberry25 2 years ago

Folks, I was never a Bush fan, but his presidency was not bad. Gas was cheap, people were working and people were actually spending money. They only thing I did not agree with him, was going to war. But that was a decision of Congress. He also made people pay more on their credit card balances, which should have been done anyway. And the housing fiasco started under Clinton. That is a fact, look it up, do not take my word. After the election you will see massive amounts of inflation which is a scary matter. $10 loaves of bread is not unheard of. I am glad to see a politician who loves his wife and his God. that is enough for me!! We have not had any leadership in 4 years and God help us if Obama wins. They have even ruined television with the things that are allowed to be seen there. All the blood guts and gore seen by kids today.

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revolutionnow 2 years ago

I am neither a Bush or Obama fan , but did'nt gas hit 4 bucks a gallon in Bush's last year?

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Sister_Ruby 2 years ago

The day Obama was inaugurated regular unleaded gas averaged under $1.90. FACT.

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revolutionnow 2 years ago

That may be true, but it still did'nt answer my question.

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tywebb 2 years ago

yes, summer of 2008 hit $4.11 http://www.GasBuddy.com/gb_retail_price_chart.aspx?city1=USA Average&city2=&city3=&crude=n&tme=96&units=us

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revolutionnow 2 years ago

Thanks for the answer and the link.

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Kay523 2 years ago

The last time the stock market was this high, the Great Recession was turning a month old, and stocks were headed for a headlong descent.

But on Thursday, the market moved swiftly in the other direction. The Standard & Poor's 500 index soared to its highest level since January 2008 in a rally that seemed destined to mark a milestone: American stocks have come almost all the way back.

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Sister_Ruby 2 years ago

Due completely to what's happening in Europe which has absolutely nothing to do with Obama.

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