Many conservative commentators saw in Bill Clinton’s speech an overly long, rambling, charming, endorsement of Barack Obama, a bit too wonky, and probably successful, if at all, only in assuring some wavering voters to stick with their 2008 decision and renew President Obama’s contract with America.
Chris Matthews, reacting to Bill Clinton's convention speech last night, said, "I always figured that if Bill Clinton landed on Mars, he would know how to do it with them, he would know how to reproduce, he would know everything. He'd just instinctively know how to talk to people."
In his fondest dreams, President Obama couldn’t have imagined getting any more from Bill Clinton than he did last night at the Democratic convention. Rather than pull Obama toward his centrist policies, Clinton embraced Obama’s hyper-liberalism—at least for one night.
In his speech Wednesday night, Bill Clinton said, "President Obama started with a much weaker economy than I did. No president—not me or any of my predecessors—could have repaired all the damage in just four years."
Always looking "forward," President Obama has asked Bill Clinton—who was elected to the presidency 20 years ago—to speak tonight and suggest to the American people (whether explicitly or implicitly) that this is really a choice between Clinton and George W. Bush, rather than between Obama and Mitt Romney. If you're Obama, this beats running on your record.
Former President Bill Clinton tried to get former senator Ted Kennedy to endorse Hillary Clinton for president in the 2008 election by describing Barack Obama this way: "A few years ago, this guy would have been carrying our bags."
Bill Bennett suggested on his radio show this morning that the Romney-Ryan campaign (or someone else) cut an ad to make famous these remarks (delivered a year ago at the University of North Carolina) about Paul Ryan by Clinton White House chief of staff Erskine Bowles:
The following clip would make a nice 30-second ad:
As the campaigns argue over welfare reform, following Mitt Romney's ad this morning that states, "President Obama quietly announced a plan to gut welfare reform," it's worth remembering what Barack Obama said about Bill Clinton's reforms before he was in the national spotlight.
So President Obama has abandoned his claim that America has been headed in the wrong direction for 30 years and decided to run on Bill Clinton’s record. Well, Mr. President, the voters know Bill Clinton, and they know that you are no Bill Clinton.
Bill Clinton took the Democratic party to the center; you have taken it back to the left.
"Former President Bill Clinton is set to play a central part in the Democratic convention, aides said, and will formally place President Obama’s name into nomination by delivering a prime-time speech designed to present a forceful economic argument for why Mr. Obama deserves to win a second term," the New York Times reports.