From the National Journal tonight –
Ron Fournier The Speech Obama Could Not Give
Bill Clinton framed the election in ways that Barack Obama simply cannot –negative and nostalgic and so overtly defensive that his was a dirty job. One better left to a master politician who will never face voters again.
In a folksy yet brutally partisan address that captivated his fellow Democrats, Clinton branded the GOP as extremist and obstructionist and hateful. He cast the 1990s as good times worth repeating under a Democratic president. And he took the central question of Mitt Romney’s campaign –“Are you better off than you were four years ago” –and turned it on its head.
Negativity,nostalgia and negating Romney’s campaign meme –this is the one-two-three punch that,because of personal and political limitations,Obama couldn’t deliver on his own.
With a classically Clinton address –on message and a bit too long –the former president cleared a path for Obama to be forward-looking and aspirational in the convention-closing address Thursday night,and he defined the race better than Obama is capable of.