Obama Maps Out Plan For Second Term: DNC Day 3
Obama continued to reassure Americans that the country is moving in the right direction as he accepted his party's nomination, but cautioned that progress would not come easy as he outlined ambitious goals to reduce the deficit by more than $4 trillion, create manufacturing jobs and improve trade.
With many Americans growing impatient with the pace of the economy's recovery, Obama appeared to downplay expectations:
"I won't pretend the path I'm offering is quick or easy. I never have. You didn't elect me to tell you what you wanted to hear. You elected me to tell you the truth. And the truth is, it will take more than a few years for us to solve challenges that have built up over decades."
Another topic Obama touched on was his energy plan:
We've doubled our use of renewable energy, and thousands of Americans have jobs today building wind turbines and long-lasting batteries. In the last year alone, we cut oil imports by one million barrels a day - more than any administration in recent history. And today, the United States of America is less dependent on foreign oil than at any time in nearly two decades.
Obama made his appeal to middle class voters by pointing out the "two fundamentally different visions for the future" Americans have to choose from. With polls suggesting that voter enthusiasm for the president isn't what it was four years ago, Obama needed to deliver a speech to light a fire under his coalition of supporters. He connected to the middle class in a way that would be difficult for Mitt Romney to accomplish:
"Ours is a fight to restore the values that built the largest middle class and the strongest economy the world has ever known; the values my grandfather defended as a soldier in Patton's Army; the values that drove my grandmother to work on a bomber assembly line while he was gone."
Much like Romney's RNC speech, Obama's address was more a rallying cry for supporters and less a platform to outline specifics. The reference to "unions, or immigrants, or gays, or any other group we're told to blame for our troubles" was a clear shout-out to blocs whose interests seem to be overlooked by the Republican party, as was the parade of female speakers throughout the convention.
This was not one of the president's more memorable speeches--following the charismatic former President Bill Clinton is no easy task--but it struck a balance between acknowledging the challenges America faces, while also letting people know that there's still hope.
It's now up to America to decide if it still wants change.
Read full excerpts of President Obama's speech at Reuters.
Reach Staff Columnist Danny Lee here.