The first official day of the Democratic National Convention was a stark contrast to the rainy weather outside. Storm clouds did not stop thousands from converging on Charlotte, North Carolina. There were other factors trying to put a damper on the Democratic Coronation of Barack Obama and Joe Biden as well. Mitt Romney supporters worked to steal the Obama thunder with a poorly publicized Romney for President/ Black Leadership Council event in downtown Charlotte. The rain nor the Romney Ryan session put a damper on those wanting to hear the Democratic rally cries for their presumed presidential candidate.
At the convention hall, some would say it was overflowing with major excitement. Ari Fleischer, former Bush White House Press Secretary, says that it “seems” there is more excitement because the Charlotte arena is “smaller” than the forum in Tampa for the Romney Ryan Convention.
Fleischer also contrasted the tone of the conventions. He feels the Republicans in Florida were about “reforms” and in Charlotte they are touting Obama’s successes.
The DNC Convention began its first night with some power punches aimed at the Mitt Romney camp. The DNC rolled out a number of people onto the massive stage, boasting Democratic blue carpet and a circle of white stars encircling the podium. There was a moment or two reminiscent of the RNC’s Artur Davis political switch pronouncement where he proclaimed support for Mitt Romney.
A former Republican Ohio firefighter took the stage pronouncing new allegiance to Barack Obama and Joe Biden. There was another moment when a woman on the stage began professing the same allegiance to the Obama Biden ticket, contending her family will not be happy with her decision.
A few minutes later there was a moment to remember a Kennedy. A video played to the audience reflecting on the life of late Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy. The segment, at one point, conjured up thoughts of current requests for Mitt Romney to release more tax returns. The video showed the heated Massachusetts senatorial debate decades ago where Mitt Romney asserted he wanted to let Roe V. Wade stand. A fired up Kennedy retorted, saying Mitt Romney was “multiple choice” on the issue as he was pro-choice."
Kennedy then demanded Romney show his papers on his stand to the voters of Massachusetts.
An overriding theme for the evening was a focus on women and women’s issues. Women are a major voting block in this country the Democrats are trying to get a lock on.
The culminating event was Mrs. Obama’s speech where she reintroduced America to the Obamas as a family and President Obama as a man of conviction to move things forward. She said she “believed deeply in my husband’s vision for this country.”
In her speech, Mrs. Obama touched on a number of lightning rod issues this president is dealing with from the economy to health care. Mrs. Obama said, “He [President Obama] didn’t care whether it was the easy thing to do politically."
How will the Convention excitement translate? Democratic strategist and pollster Cornell Belcher is not focusing in on a bump in the polls, as he says, “there will not be one, [a bump] as these conventions are more for the “party faithful.” He also says, “People don’t watch the convention like they did years ago”.
Beyond, the conventions and the upcoming debates, at issue is the economy and who can move America out of the grips of recession.
The first family is excited about this week. First Lady Michelle Obama electrified the crowd with her speech and her well-defined arms seen through a halter style silk dress. Also, Thursday, President Obama accepts the Democratic nomination for president for a second time.
There is also a family milestone, a big rite of passage for their oldest daughter Malia. She starts high school this week.
This convention season has been a conflict for many attending as it butts heads with the first day and week of school in many locals in the country. Many have tried to figure out how to accommodate both, the convention and the start of school. Sources contend the Obamas are facing that same decision.