Well, even most Republicans agree that the Dems put on a livelier, more cohesive convention than they did, though both confabs kept the fact-checkers working overtime.
While all the numbers are not yet in, it also seems evident that the Rs got little if any polling “bump,” while the Ds seem to be on their way to a decent if not exceptional lift—but one that might not last. One school of thought says the poor jobs report last Friday could mitigate it.
It’s clear that GOP Sen. Marco Rubio is a rising star and that a half dozen GOP governors are looking toward 2016 in the increasingly more likely chance that Mitt Romney is not in the White House at that time. I doubt that very many folks outside of his immediate circle believe they succeeded in their Number One goal, which was to “humanize” their candidate.
Of course you’re always in trouble when you recognize that a human being needs to be humanized in the first place. Also, one of the lines in his speech that he seems to be repeating like a mantra in more recent appearances could easily turn out to bite him:
“President Obama promised to begin to slow the rise of the oceans and heal the planet. My promise…is to help you and your family.”
What makes him think that slowing the rise of the oceans and staunching climate change will NOT help American families—to say nothing of families around the world? I suspect most independents and others undecided voters are likely to have ecological concerns; the deniers of climate change and man’s role in it are already in the GOP camp.
It’s also a matter of conventional wisdom by now that Bill Clinton gave the speech of his life in making the case for Barack Obama’s re-election. A better speech than he ever gave on behalf of himself or his spouse. Only Obama’s spouse came close to the same emotional heights.
One less-frequently quoted line of Clinton’s nearly hour-long barnburner also has the potential of attracting many swing voters:
“No president, no president — not me, not any of my predecessors — no one could have fully repaired all the damage that he [Obama] found in just four years.”
Coming from a guy who rarely admits fallibility, it makes the apologia for the past four years’ shortcomings in a most positive, persuasive and common-sense way. It could make a good commercial.
Still, it’s far too early for Dem celebrations. Another two weeks will tell a more definitive story, but that could be upended following the first and highly significant domestic policy debate on Oct. 3.
Robotic as he often appears, Romney tends to do well in the debate format, where he is less likely to gaffe—other, perhaps, than to offer a $10,000 wager on something. And while his oratorical gifts are now legendary, the Prez has not exactly inhabited a gaffe-free zone, even in a debate, such as the one where he made a snide comment about his future secretary of state.
A genuine battle looms.
Don Rose is a regular columnist for the Chicago Daily Observer
image Episcopalian Convent in Kenosha, Wisconsin, Kemper Hall, the Mother House for the Western Province of the Episcopal Sisters of St. Mary.