Monday, August 25, 2008

What are you watching for at the Democratic Convention this week? (Same question next week for the GOP Convention...)

The following guest post is from Dan Conley, a former speechwriter for Virginia Gov. Doug Wilder and Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley.

Here are the things the Democrats need to get done this week:
Sell the Middle Class Tax Cut. John McCain doesn't offer one, Barack Obama does. McCain is running ad after ad saying Obama will raise taxes -- it's a lie. For the bottom 97 percent of American taxpayers, Barack Obama will cut your taxes and John McCain won't.

Pound the economic elitism storyline. McCain gift wrapped an issue for Democrats this week by not knowing how many homes he owns. He's out of touch. He thinks people who make $4 million a year are middle class. He thinks the Bush economic approach is working.

Turnaround the celebrity/cult issue. There's a real political cult stalking America, but not the one you think. The real cult is one of warrior pencil-necked geeks ... a political Fight Club for all the boys who got beat up in high school. They hold the corner offices in think tanks and dominate the op-ed pages of big city newspapers. They walk in John McCain's shadow and throw around pro wrestling words like "smackdown," thinking that the U.S. military can restore their manhood. And yes, some of them are U.S. Senators, most notably McCain's fey sidekicks Lindsey Graham and Joe Lieberman ...

Destroy Joe Lieberman. The Dems made a huge mistake in 2004 by not bloodying up Zell Miller in Boston before he could attack them in New York. This time, Lieberman must be annihilated. I'd use Jim Webb or Wesley Clark to twist the knife into him.

Get real. No need for flash or showbiz. No need for soaring rhetoric. America knows we can do that, they expect it. Talk about where we are, how we got there and exactly how we'll get out. Bob the Builder chants aren't enough ... turn the convention into Extreme Makeover, America Edition.
Taken From:


RyanO said...

I think the press will be watching Hillary Clinton closely at the convention to see how she handles herself, but otherwise I would hope that the Democrats would start building up Biden's track record and foreign policy experience to combat McCain's. Shifting the elitism to the Republicans would also be a very important step. I think McCain has escaped much criticism in that arena by distracting the public eye with Obama's so called elitism. The Democrats would do well to change this.

Mr. Bretzmann said...

A former student of mine called today from Denver. He said the politicos are all over the place on the streets of Denver. He said the security is tight.

I think the most interesting thing we talked about is the Hillary supporters. I asked if the rift in the Democratic Party is as serious as MSNBC seems to be making it. He said that everyone he talks to is an Obama supporter and is excited about it. He said he was hanging out with some former Clinton supporters and they are all on-board with Obama. Is the media making all this up for ratings or just for something to report on????

Mr. Bretzmann said...

TODAY: 80th Anniversary of Women's Suffrage

BrandonSh said...

I just watched the replay of Obama's speech and I thought it was one of the best I've ever heard. The passion he speaks with and the passion that people feed back to him is incomparable to anything else. I don't know how John Mccain could possibly come back with a speech that even comes close to Obama's. My friend and I were watching and the entire time we were talking about how John Mccain could not possibly deliver such an inspiring speech. I think the only chance he might have at this point is debating specific policies; something that was a bit of an issue for Obama back in the primaries.

PS: I'm an AP Government Alumnus for anyone that's wondering.

Alex D said...

If I hear the word inspiring one more time I sincerely think I am going to go nuts. No one can doubt that Obama gave a good speech but seriously after being harassed so many times for his speeches and giving little to back up his speeches Obama gives us yet again a speech that gave almost us no insight into how he will accomplish his goals, for example as one democrat lady pointed out today, she said I want to vote for him and be swayed by this speech but I kept thinking to my self how is he going to raise the value of a dollar. Even by saying in the post above me that McCain will have to talk "specific politics" that Obama has had problems with in the past like blows my mind. Is that admitting that actually saying a message is something McCain has been doing and Obama has not?

Ps. My polysci class has a blog thing that I guess we are going to have to write on, I was like what, really, I thought i got away from that when I got out of this one. And also, leaving your door open really does help you meet people, Butler is going great, although Mr. Bretzmann they are hiring another Political Science professor...

jamieg said...

Alex, I think it would be way too Mr. Feeney of Mr. B to go from being your AP gov teacher to teaching polisci at your university.

Also, Sarah Palin? wtf?

amandak said...


I got talked into going to get ice cream last night instead of watching the speech, so I first watched it today. It was a great speech as I think we all knew it would be, and I think Obama said everything he needed to say. Most importantly, he related himself to the average American. As Brandon said, there is no way McCain's speech could be nearly as successful. It certainly doesn't help that he is not just an average speaker, he is awful. Personally, I think his monotone and creepy smiles just make it seem like he doesn't mean anything he says and none of it is his original thought.

Alex- this is a convention speech. It's supposed to be inspiring and uplifting and cause the crowd to break into frequent cheers. Nobody wants to hear him talk about healthcare for 20 minutes. The specifics will become more clear in the debates.

College Democrats meeting is on the 16th. I can tell I'm going to LOVE being in Madison during an election year. And I truely love that people are still coming to this blog.

JamieW said...

Oh Mr. Bretzmann, guess what!
on thursday i signed up to join College Democrats and to help campaign for Obama through state representative Kim Hixson who I was able to meet. I totally thought of you when I signed up...I'm getting involved :-)

arletap said...

I just love that Jamie wrote 'Mr. Feeny' and used 'wtf' in her post. Definitely giggled.