Hillary Clinton Endorses Obama, and That’s All
“I am honored to be here tonight,” Clinton told the crowd, describing herself as a “proud mother, a proud Democrat, a proud American, and a proud supporter of Barack Obama.”
Clinton told her fellow Democrats that regardless of who they voted for in the primary season, “the time is now to unite as a single party with a single purpose” -- to prevent another Republican from becoming president.
One of her big applause lines: “No way. No how. No McCain.”
“Barack Obama is my candidate. And he must be our president,” Clinton said.
Clinton clearly endorsed Obama, but she never praised him. At one point, she suggested that he’d do no more or less than any Democratic president has done.
“And when Barack Obama is in the White House, he'll revitalize our economy, defend the working people of America, and meet the global challenges of our time. Democrats know how to do this. As I recall, President Clinton and the Democrats did it before. And President Obama and the Democrats will do it again.
Wanna Talk About Me
Much of the speech was about Clinton herself -- the “privilege” of meeting voters on the campaign trail and hearing their stories: “You taught me so much, you made me laugh, and -- you even made me cry. You allowed me to become part of your lives. And you became part of mine,” she said, according to the text of her speech.
Clinton talked about the people she will “always remember,” and the people to whom she will “always be grateful.”
“To my supporters, my champions -- my sisterhood of the traveling pantsuits - from the bottom of my heart: Thank you,” she said, as a beaming Bill and Chelsea Clinton looked on.
She touched on all that’s wrong with the nation (“jobs lost, houses gone, falling wages, rising prices,” a “right-wing headlock” at the Supreme Court and “partisan gridlock” in Washington, a rising deficit, the rising price of oil). She mentioned foreign hotspots -- Putin and Georgia, Iraq and Iran.
She listed the many reasons why she ran for president -- “to renew the promise of America, to rebuild the middle class and sustain the American Dream” -- the list was straight out of her stump speeches.
Clinton urged her supporters to look beyond her to the people who will be helped, she said, by having a Democrat in the White House.
She listed various reasons why “we need to elect Barack Obama.” Clinton also praised Michelle Obama as a “terrific partner” for Barack. “Anyone who saw Michelle's speech last night knows she will be a great First Lady for America,” Clinton said.
She praised Obama’s running mate Joe Biden as a “strong leader and a good man” (adjectives she never used for Obama), and she said Obama and Biden “will be a great team for our country.”
“Now, John McCain is my colleague and my friend. He has served our country with honor and courage. But we don't need four more years . . . of the last eight years.” Clinton then launched into the many problems she blames on a Republican administration.
The final portion of Clinton’s speech was a pep rally -- and the crowd loved it. She talked about women getting the right to vote; of giving the country “back” to “women and men who defy the odds and never give up.”
“Even in the darkest of moments, ordinary Americans have found the faith to keep going. I've seen it in you,” Clinton said.
Americans are “not big on quitting,” she added. “But remember, before we can keep going, we have to get going by electing Barack Obama president.” She urged voters to “think about your children and grandchildren come election day.”
"She said what she had to say, and didn't say any more," said conservative analyst Charles Krauthammer on the Fox News Channel.
ABC's George Stephanopoulos said a prominent campaign supporter told him -- after watching Clinton’s speech -- that it was a mistake for Democrats not to nominate her.
On Fox News, it was clear that Greta Van Susteren and Democratic analyst Susan Estrich believed that Clinton, not Obama, should have received the Democratic nomination.