Well, I’ve been playing board games with the kids while trying to listen to the speeches and talking head babble. Let me try to catch up.
Give CNN credit. After Warner gave his somewhat intellectual and lackluster speech probably calculated to win him the Senate seat in Virginia all three cable news networks broke off into babble. None of them expected much news from a talk on energy policy from Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer, but somebody was paying attention at CNN and they broke from the babble and celeb watching to cover what was a very articulate, charismatic and lively speech from a pol I’d never heard of until tonight. In a very midwestern wry manner he used some wit to explain the facts of life about oil, that we consume 25 percent of the world’s oil and hold 3 percent of the reserves, and couldn’t even come close to covering our needs with offshore and onshore drilling “even in every backyard of McCain’s that he doesn’t know about.”
It was the first speech I saw that got into detailed specifics of policy, which is probably why the networks weren’t covering it. But he brought up the bills McCain voted against for alternative energy source promotion, and made it very clear to anyone listening that drilling is no panacea, and that “the most important barrel is the one we don’t use.”
In conjunction with the Warner speech, boring as most of it was, where Warner criticized Bush for failing to make any requests of the American people post-911 (playing into Obama’s Kennedy “yes we can” theme). The message, made in primetime – a conscious effort at conservation must be part of any comprehensive energy plan.
Eventually, Fox caught on (probably had somebody monitoring CNN), but MSNBC completely missed the boat. It had some of that “raw meat” Carville had been looking for (he got some from Casey as well). And as Fox broke off from the speech, Brit Hume felt compelled to counter with the argument that we don’t have alternative energy technology sufficiently developed to make it part of an energy plan – kind of hypocritical given the arguments for offshore drilling increases are based on increased supplies years down the road.
Okay, Hillary’s up. Be back later.
Well, it was a good speech. Probably the most important part was where she attempted to shame as selfish her PUMA supporters, asking them whether they were working just for her, or for the Iraq war veteran who needed help, etc. CNN went to one PUMA delegate afterwards, who was in tears and pledged that she won’t vote for McCain, but isn’t sure she’s going to vote at all in November.
Upon completion of the speech I immediately switched from CNN to Fox. They aren’t making any pretenses tonight. They had a panel of five right wingers. Kondracke and Krystal immediately criticized the speech for not specifically stating that Obama would make a good commander in chief. Lo and behold, two minutes later McCain released a press statement saying the very same thing. (Carville is laughing it off on CNN as I type). The blond woman on the panel from Fortune Magazine said something about the speech being great for Clinton’s political future. Then Fred Barnes criticized it for being too feminist (this date being the 88th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment).
Oh, and by the way, the McCain ad with Hillary Clinton’s quotes played on the first commercial break following her speech. It’s hard for me to imagine that voters will be impressed with that, but then again, it’s been hard for me to imagine a lot of tactics which have worked in the past. McCain’s campaign, as expressed through their press statement, the timing of the ad, and their panel on Fox, seems petty to me. Again, like the negativity coming immediately following the Biden announcement, I’ve never seen anything like it. Not even in 1988.
Another kudos point for CNN. She mentioned the Democratic Party leader in Arkansas being killed and the death of the Congresswoman, and CNN immediately shot the camera up at Bill Clinton with whom the surviving family members in the seats by him. Neither MSNBC nor Fox apparently had the background info to know to do that.
More a little bit later.
Back to Schweizer for a minute. I think I may have been watching a future president. He may have been to this convention what Obama was four years ago.
Gergen and Carl Bernstein just agreed that whatever the Republicans say she didn’t say and needed to be said will be said tomorrow, or the next day. Clinton will attend the acceptance speech Thursday night.
Addendum: Just to add my two cents, I did think the Democrats missed an opportunity tonight. They should have had Bill and Michelle sitting next to each other.
Found the clip I was looking for:
I haven’t spent the past 35 years in the trenches advocating for children, campaigning for universal health care, helping parents balance work and family, and fighting for women’s rights at home and around the world . . . to see another Republican in the White House squander the promise of our country and the hopes of our people.
And you haven’t worked so hard over the last 18 months, or endured the last eight years, to suffer through more failed leadership.
No way. No how. No McCain.
Maybe I’m reading into it, but doesn’t it seem like she’s scolding the PUMA’s like they were irresponsible kids?
Second addendum: I think Sebelius, while maybe a little more quiet, was a little more witty.
John McCain’s version: There’s no place like home…or a home…or a home…or a home…or a home…
Third addendum: ABC’s tribute to Clinton’s hairdos of the past. Kind of underscores a few points.
Fourth addendum: Kennedy’s speech last night was given while he was in pain from kidney stones.