When First Lady Michelle Obama stepped on to the stage at the Time Warner Cable Arena, the energy at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina became electric.
Poised and prepared, with a clear agenda to remind voters of just why they voted in 2008 for her husband, President Barack Obama, she laid it all on the line and her intensity reverberated through the crowd long after she exited stage left.
“When it comes to the health of our families, Barack refused to listen to all those folks who told him to leave health reform for another day, another president,” said the first lady. “He didn’t care whether it was the easy thing to do politically – that’s not how he was raised – he cared that it was the right thing to do.”
Read the First Lady’s entire speech transcript here.
With unmistakeable passion, she spoke of his long nights and tough decisions; yet, described lovingly how he still always makes time for his young daughters, Malia and Sasha. She touted his achievements on marriage equality, healthcare and education. She spoke about the American Dream; not the poison apple pie force-fed the public in Tampa at the Republican National Convention, but an America where people who can’t just run to mommy and daddy for an extra few hundred-thousand dollars to start a business, can not only get a slice of the pie, but bake their own.
Watch Michelle Obama’s entire DNC speech here:
In short, Michelle Obama, in under an hour, sold her husband’s administration more authentically and convincingly than he has been able to do in 4 years –just as he knew that she would.
See Michelle Obama’s DNC video below:
“Now I know that whatever I say here today is going to be at best a distant second to the speech you will hear tonight from the star of the Obama family, Michelle Obama,” he told a crowd of supporters at Norfolk State University.
“This is just like a relay and you start off with the fastest person. So I’m going to be at home and I’m going to be watching it with our girls. And I am going to try not to let them see their daddy cry because when Michelle starts talking, I start getting all misty. But I’m looking forward to being in Charlotte myself, I’ll go down there tomorrow.”
We are looking forward to the president’s appearance as well. Despite the barn-burner that the first lady presented to the DNC, people have questions for President Obama and he has to have answers. From the extension of Bush 43’s Patriot Act, to unarmed drones, from Libya to his reticence to discuss the African-American community, there are many of his domestic and foreign policies that he can not simply side-step because it’s convenient. This is 2012, not 2008, and blind support is no longer an option.
It can be done, but he’s going to have to be his own cheerleader. He’s going to have to say that “Hope” and “Change” aren’t the intangible ideals that he spoke of 4 years ago, but concrete goals that are going to take more than a pretty speech. He’s going to have to take a page from Frederick Douglass’ playbook and explain that we can only achieve those goals if we work for them through the difficult times when all seems lost.
Whatever the outcome may be, we know without a doubt who will be by his side every step of the way.
“I didn’t think it was possible, but today, I love my husband even more than I did four years ago…even more than I did 23 years ago,
when we first met, said First Lady Michelle Obama.
“I love that he’s never forgotten how he started.
“I love that we can trust Barack to do what he says he’s going to do, even when it’s hard – especially when it’s hard.
“I love that for Barack, there is no such thing as “us” and “them” – he doesn’t care whether you’re a Democrat, a Republican, or none of the above…he knows that we all love our country…and he’s always ready to listen to good ideas…he’s always looking for the very best in everyone he meets.
“And I love that even in the toughest moments, when we’re all sweating it – when we’re worried that the bill won’t pass, and it seems like all is lost – Barack never lets himself get distracted by the chatter and the noise.”
If Michelle Obama’s goal was to make people believe in her husband again, even if just enough to give him a second chance, then mission accomplished.