- The Washington Times - Friday, July 29, 2016

PHILADELPHIA — On the heels of a convention that began on a rocky note but ended on a historic one, Hillary Clinton and Sen. Tim Kaine on Friday made one last appearance in Philadelphia, pushing hope, optimism and patriotism and contrasting that with the “twisted” view of Republican Donald Trump.

At a rally at Temple University, Mrs. Clinton began laying out a strategy that will guide her campaign between now and November: to paint herself and Mr. Kaine as the candidates of a sunny future while portraying Mr. Trump and his vice presidential nominee, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, as dark, negative and lacking solutions.

“We might as well have been talking about two different countries,” she said of the visions for America laid out at the Republican and Democratic conventions. “Or two different planets. Donald Trump painted a dark, divisive picture of a country in decline. He insisted America is weak, and he told us all after laying out this very dark picture that I alone can fix it. As I watched and heard that, it set off alarm bells.”

Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Kaine, Virginia Democrat, appeared on stage with their spouses, former President Bill Clinton and Anne Holton, respectively. The Democratic quartet will leave Philadelphia on Friday and head through Pennsylvania and Ohio for a three-day bus tour.

“The four of us are going to barnstorm the country because as a very smart president who just so happens to be here today once said, there’s nothing wrong with America that can’t be cured by what’s right with America,” Mrs. Clinton said, referencing famous words uttered by her husband.

By the end of the four-day party convention, Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Kaine succeeded in putting to rest at least some of the unrest within the Democratic Party. Many supporters of Sen. Bernard Sanders now say they’re willing to support the Clinton-Kaine ticket, although they also say they’re skeptical Mrs. Clinton will follow through on the progressive promises she’s made over the past several months.

While the former first lady and Mr. Kaine spent a few minutes discussing policy in their appearance on Friday, most of the event was focused on painting a determined, optimistic picture of America and contrasting that with what Mr. Trump is offering.

“The Republican convention was like a twisted and negative tour. It wasn’t a tour of this country; it was a journey through Donald Trump’s mind, and that is a very frightening place,” Mr. Kaine said.

Mrs. Clinton also gave a nod to progressives by reminding them she’s not merely running to serve as President Obama’s third term.

“We’ve got work to do. I’m not satisfied with the status quo,” Mrs. Clinton said. “I’m not telling you everything is peachy keen. I’m telling you we’ve made progress, but we’ve got work to do.”

• Ben Wolfgang can be reached at bwolfgang@washingtontimes.com.

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