DENVER — The Democratic National Convention starts in the morning and culminates Thursday night when Sen. Barack Obama formally accepts the party nomination in front of 80,000 people at Invesco Field at Mile High.
I did a story for our special convention section detailing just how Obama got here, four short years after he was introduced to the nation in the convention keynote.
While researching the piece, I watched the ‘04 Obama speech again and found that he uses many of the same themes, and even the same language, today.
It’s interesting to see how Obama has changed as well.
More fun, as I quoted in my story, is this video of David Brooks and Mark Shields lauding the Obama speech, and even wondering if they’d just heard from the first black president of the United States.
Here’s my story’s opener:
CHICAGO — The “Obama Revolution” has transformed presidential politics and injected into campaigning a level of popular enthusiasm not seen in decades.
But can the man who sparked the revolution translate the support of tens of thousands who will gather to hear him accept the Democratic presidential nomination on Thursday into tens of millions of votes that will deliver the White House to his party in November?
Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois commanded the nation’s attention four years ago when the upstart politician, then a 43-year-old state senator, delivered the keynote speech at the Democratic National Convention.
“Tonight is a particular honor for me because, let’s face it, my presence on this stage is pretty unlikely,” he told the delegates in Boston, many of whom were surprised by the newcomer’s passion and potential.
He could just as easily utter those same words in Denver as he formally accepts the party’s nomination in the 75,000-seat Invesco Field, where the Denver Broncos play and he starts the three-month-sprint to become the nation’s first black president.
Throughout his presidential campaign, Mr. Obama has marveled aloud to voters at his “unlikely” journey, which culminates as Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton steps aside on Tuesday and he becomes the party’s official standard-bearer.
Now, as his convention marks the arrival of a new generation of Democrats, questions remain about whether the revolution can deliver a victory.
Read the full piece here.
Finally, much hay has been made about Sen. Joe Biden’s “Barack America” and other slip-ups during his Saturday speech in Springfield.
I got a nice chuckle, but it seems pretty obvious to me that they were having teleprompter problems. His line was, “the next president of the United States, Barack America!” I would wager money that the speech text was “next president of the United States, Barack Obama.
I chatted the other night with a top Biden confidante, who acknowledged he isn’t used to speaking to such large crowds. The campaign said there were 35,000 in Springfield. He’s addressed some large conventions, but this was a really high pressure moment.
Biden uses a teleprompter way less than Obama does, wonder how much he’s practicing for his big speech Wednesday?
LIVE, FROM DENVER, BOOKMARK OUR TRAIL TIMES BLOG. ALL OF MY BLOGS WILL BE POSTED THERE AS WELL THIS WEEK, AND WE’LL HAVE TONS OF ITEMS FROM THE CONVENTION FLOOR, INCLUDING SIGHTS AND SOUNDS OF THE DNC.
—Christina Bellantoni, national political reporter,
The Washington Times
Bookmark my blog at http://www.washingtontimes.com/weblogs/bellantoni