tv The Situation Room CNN September 6, 2012 5:00pm-7:00pm EDT
called hope. >> and i stand here tonight as my own man. and i want you to know me for who i truly am. >> i'm john kerry. and i'm reporting for duty. >> america, we cannot turn back. not with so much work to be done. >> announcer: this is cnn. and we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." and we're live from the democratic national convention in charlotte, north carolina. weather kept this big closing night indoors instead of the planned mass stadium rally. but the energy is already building for the climax of this convention. president obama's acceptance speech. bill clinton certainly set the stage last night with a powerful rousing address. now it's up to president obama
to deliver. and what he says here just a few hours from now could have a huge impact on whether he gets another four years in the white house. so we're just moments away from the day's opening gavel. you'll see it all here unfolding live. president obama says he'll share his vision for the future tonight. and his aides say he'll offer some concrete proposals at the same time. but what does he need to say in this crucial appearance, gloria borger, candy crowley are both here. the challenge for him, we know he's a great order, there will be poetry and pros and all of that, but the country wants some substance as well. >> yeah. i think president obama needs to convince the country that he can fix the economy, period. there's a lot of disaffected, disappointed democrats out there who are watching this convention, who watched mitt romney's convention. and they want somebody who can improve their lives. and i think the case has been made about the past four years
by bill clinton. and it's up to the president to specifically say what his vision is for the future should he get re-elected. he wants this to be a choice election, not a referendum. he has to tell them what the choice is. >> all right. this is a moment i've been waiting for. let's get a little musical interlude right now. they've just introduced james taylor. let's listen in to the great star. here he is on the stage. >> i know it's an empty chair. makes you nervous, doesn't it? that's all right. i'm going to sit on it. i'm not going to talk to it. ♪
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await the gavel to come down and open this the third and final day of the democratic national convention. john king is standing by. the favorability numbers as far as the president is concerned in all of the recent polls are telling us what as far as november 6th is concerned? >> that's been a key question and a key strength of president obama, wolf, throughout his presidency. either people are disappointed in the economy, his job approval numbers are down, people's favorable opinion of the president has been up. people like him. that can matter in a close election. so as he prepares to speak to the country tonight unfiltered, let's look at where his unfavorable/favorable ratings are now. this changed a bit because of the republican convention. go back to beginning of august,
52-47, 48-47. this is statistic. president's ratings haven't changed all that much. so he's more favorable than unfavorable. but the president would like to boost that up. it would help him in a close election. why does that matter? this has always been an advantage over governor mitt romney. but if we look at the impact of the tampa convention, look at this. you do see a bit of a change. governor romney had just a four-point spread between favorable and unfavorable, wolf, going into the republican convention. ten points now, governor romney actually viewed more favorably than president obama out of the republican convention. you have to go back a long time in the polng to find anything like that. so one of the president's many challenges tonight. obviously the most significant challenge is layout and economic agenda for the second term. justify the big decisions in the first term. but the president would hope if this is a close election in likability, favorability matters, the president would like to improve some on this. this number's down a bit from where he would like it. that's one of the big goals tonight, wolf. >> all right. john, standby.
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democratic party will now come to order. [ cheers and applause ] i've banged that gavel a few times in my life. please stand for the invocation. >> let us pray. all mighty god, we have come to this place mindful of our absolute need of you. we confess that america has always needed your guidance, your strength and your protection. lord, we acknowledge that we need your direction so as not to
stray too far from the shores of your purposes. and as we walk into the autumn of elections, we pray that you would continue to guide this great nation. help us all, republicans, independents and democrats. never to tire in the work of justice and mercy. help us always to be mindful of the most vulnerable among us, the child, the widow, the orphan and the stranger. give us the courage to face the giants that threaten our life together. and help us to forge the future of our democracy from the better angels of our nature. lord, we know we still have work to do. but may our work reflect your character. may it be out of love, compassion, justice and
civility. may we never be satisfied until every son and daughter of god has an opportunity to flourish and strive. so, lord, we confess that we can only march on by your immeasurable grace. from new mexico to north carolina, from our farms to our towering cities, from our soldiers to our stay-at-home parents, we pledge to move forward in faith. a faith that believes that the whirlwinds of division and the storms of despair are not greater than the sunlight of love, hope and freedom. god, help us to do our work together, the affluent and the economically challenged. women and men. we recognize that we are our sisters and our brothers keepers and that together we can do
more. so give us the solidarity and ingenuity to respond to some of today's relentless challenges. god, we are marching on. we are moving forward. and we desperately need you. so help us not to relent until our nation sees the day when justice rolls down like a mighty stream and righteousness like a mighty river. in this we pray in the name of the ones the ancients called wonderful, counselor, mighty god, prince of peace, amen. [ applause ] >> announcer: ladies and gentlemen, please remain standing for the presentation of colors by american legion post 400 of charlotte, north
[ applause ] >> what a beautiful, beautiful rendition of the national anthem by marc anthony. fabulous, fabulous. this crowd is excited. this is day three, the final day of the democratic national convention as we await the start of the formal presentation. let's take a quick break. our coverage continues right after this. ♪
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we're back here at the democratic national convention, the third day of this convention is now formally underway. the gavel is down. the speeches have started. the musical presentations have started. everyone gearing up for the big speeches later in the evening including the vice president joe biden, the president barack obama. let's talk a little about joe biden. candy crowley is here. it's interesting, jessica yellin, our chief white house correspondent is hearing he's going to talk a little bit about some of the experience he's had with the president, what he's learned about the president over these past four years, he'll share some anecdotes and focus a little bit on the big decisions that the president's made. he's trying to tee-off, the president, obviously in a very strong way. this is an important speech for joe biden personally as well. >> it is. it sounds a little bit like michelle obama's speech when she tried to link policy and the person. so this is also a guy joe biden,
the vice president who's been in on some of these decisions, he had a famous phrase which i guess we can't repeat on television to describe when health care passed. what's interesting about this through the prism of joe biden is this is a man who has not ruled out a 2016 run. so a lot will be looked at in this speech. this has been a man who's been quite loyal to president obama, done him a lot of go ahead. he has gone off the reservation as we say a couple of times. but he has done what they've asked of him. and, you know, the question is what happens next? over the next four years. we saw the powerful speech from bill clinton. and of course if you talked to folks out here after bill clinton last night, who do they all want to ask about? hillary clinton. it sets up a really interesting dynamic of a sitting vice president who's been very loyal to this president and of course hillary clinton who said she doesn't want to run. but certainly joe biden has said he's left that door open. >> he says he feels great, he's not ruling it out by any means.
jessica is also saying biden will ding romney but in a relatively gentle way drawing more contrast, not the sort of blistering red meat stump speech kind of address. i think that would probably be more appropriate for this convention. >> for this venue, yes. this is a man who they brought on the ticket because of number one, his foreign policy experience, which is interesting. but number two, and probably even more important than the first was that this ticket when it was brand new four years ago saw joe biden as a person who could reach out to those working white class voters. and that remains a lot of his appeal. >> i don't know about you, but i'm looking forward to that vice presidential debate, paul ryan versus joe biden. >> yeah, yeah, absolutely. >> that will be good as well. candy, thanks very much. >> thanks. >> we're only hours away from president obama's high stakes convention speech here in charlotte. will his challenger be watching? what mitt romney is now saying about that coming up. there are a lot of warning lights
we're back at the democratic national convention. the excitement is really heating up now. but remember, mitt romney, he certainly is part of this whole presidential process as well. he's focusing in as we speak on the presidential debates. there will be three of them in october. he's wrapped up his presentations at least for now. he met briefly with reporters today, our national political correspondent jim acosta joining us live now from new hampshire. so what's mitt romney doing tonight? does he plan on watching president obama's speech, jim? >> reporter: i don't think so, wolf. at least that's the indication he gave to reporters earlier today.
unlike president obama who during the republican convention was out there holding big rallies, mitt romney has essentially stayed behind closed doors doing this debate prep opting instead for smaller events over in new hampshire where he's carried with him a small pool of reporters. he did not travel with the full press corp with him. it was at one of these events when he was asked whether or not he was going to watch president obama's convention speech tonight. here's what he had to say. >> are you going to watch the speech tonight? >> thank you, thank you. haven't watched so far. >> are you going to watch tonight? >> don't plan on it. i'll tell you one thing though, if i heard the question asked if i'm going to watch tonight, if i heard the president was going to report on his promises, i would love to watch tonight. you asked the question am i going to watch tonight, if i heard or if from the excerpts that are put out i hear the
president's going to report on the promises he made and how he has performed on those promises, i'd love to watch it. but if it's another series of new promises that he's not going to keep, i have no interest in seeing him. because i saw the promises last time. those are promises he did not keep. and the american people deserve to know why he did not keep his promises. >> reporter: it's also worth noting that the romney campaign did not come out with a challenge to what president clinton said last night during his convention speech. instead, the romney campaign is using bill clinton in a new campaign ad to go after president obama. and i talk today a romney advisor earlier today about this, wolf, and they are basically moving on past bill clinton turning the page saying only president obama can defend the economy. and in the words of his advisor, he can't do that. wolf. >> jim acosta traveling with mitt romney. thanks very much. barney frank, the retiring member of congress from massachusetts, is speaking right now delivering a blistering attack against the republicans and mitt romney.
remember, he's from massachusetts. romney's home state. listen to this. >> i realize here is the problem. and this is a hard one for me because of my addiction. so please listen carefully. it turns out our governor was mitt romney. what we should have had as governor was myth romney. myth romney is a wonderful private sector executive who when he moves into the public sector can transform it. i wish myth romney had been governor of the state i lived in. if it had been myth romney, i'd probably be riding the commuter train from new bedford to boston right now. but we had mitt romney. so we had to wait for the great patrick to get that started. maybe as a democrat i should be grateful we got myth and mitt.
he would have been re-elected overwhelmingly. now, that might not have been good for the democrats, but not following the mitch mcconnell view that your party's advantage is more important than the economic well-being of your constituents, i would have taken that. but we didn't have myth romney. we had mitt romney. and he did the democrats a favor, not the state. after four consecutive republican elections, when mitt romney ran for re-election -- his term was up, he was afraid to run for re-election. letting the lieutenant governor take a fall and the republicans haven't won a major election in statewide office since. it's a state office. well, if we didn't get the job experience and we can't look to the past to be reassured, let's look to the future. you know there are a lot of romneys. there's the romney who was going to be better on gay rights than
ted kennedy. there was the romney for climate change. and now there's a romney who believes it's a myth, to coin the phrase. but let's look at what we have from the mitt romney who's running for president. he has now basically committed himself to repeat every failed and mistaken policy that the republican party implored to bring our country into the greatest recession in years in which they have followed to try to retard its recovery. and there's a reason for it. for all of the talk about how mitt romney understands the private sector, and that clearly is a little bit iffy, he has no understanding whatsoever of the public sector. of course we want a private sector that is prosperous, that creates jobs. this hall is full of people i know who have been successful in the private sector and do that and are entrepreneurs and business people. but sensible people also know in a civilized society you need a
public sector to do those things that the private sector isn't meant to do, to deal with the quality of life. there are things a civilized society needs that we can only do if we do them together. and we do them together that's called government. so that's why mitt romney opposed, opposed the successful effort to keep the automobile industry going. because he failed to see the importance of a public sector, private sector cooperation. he belittled president obama's concern for fired and layed off employees and the services they provide when he just wants more teachers and firefighters and cops because we have had millions of private sector jobs created. but our unemployment has been higher than it should be in part because hundreds and hundreds of thousands of hard working public employees have been let go by republican policy.
and finally, finally there is a sector i worked on hard. the financial sector. the single biggest cause of our economic collapse was the failure of the republican right wing, unfortunately some democrats joined in to allow the public sector appropriately to regulate the private sector. i want a strong financial community. but i don't want subprime loans being given to people who can't pay them back. i don't want derivatives being engaging by companies that can't back up when they get in trouble like aig. i want an independent consumer that will protect the individual saver and borrower from abuse. i don't want municipalities to be advised by unscrupulous people who get them in trouble and lose money. we began in 2009 to set in place the kind of rules to prevent the abuse that led to the economic
disaster. myth romney, and for all i know, mitt romney, opposes all of that. he has called for the -- >> all right. barney frank. barney frank speaking here at the democratic convention. he's going full-speed-ahead against mitt romney, someone from massachusetts. we're watching what's going on. john lewis, the congressman from georgia getting ready to speak. we're going to be hearing from the performing artist mary j blige. much more right after this. [ "the odd couple" theme playing ]
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bring in our cnn contributors, roland martin and alex castellanos. you suggested that powerful speech that bill delivered may have been deal done. >> it was such a powerful speech, it was like watching a major league pitcher throw effortless strikes from center field. quite a speech. but two things. democratic party under bill clinton became a party of fiscal responsibility, not the party of george mcgovern that spent too much. barack obama is seen as a george mcgovern like figure. he spends too much. that's what concerns independents. bill clinton came back to do the laying of hands and said no,
he's not, more of a centrist like i am. that may or may not be true, laying of hands helps. the other thing clinton did, he didn't just endorse obama, he gave him a campaign, gave him a narrative, a story. before last night, we didn't know why we should keep barack obama. bill clinton said the sun is going to come up tomorrow, the economy is getting better. it would be a risk to change. >> he did a powerful job. >> of course, but here's the deal. you can't paint a picture unless you're provided the tools, provided the paint. if he had nothing to talk about, he couldn't stand there and make it up. the other deal, i love alex talks about spending and debt. the biggest contributor to the deficit has been extension of bush tax cuts which i know you love so much. they do contribute to the deficit. talk about spending and debt, it plays a part in it.
>> what's the biggest difference, so far day three of the democratic convention between what is going on in charlotte and what happened last week in tampa? >> biggest difference, good question, wolf, last week was ann romney's convention. we got to know mitt romney the man through her eyes. this week, so far bill clinton's convention. we are getting to know where barack obama would take the country. what's different here, the energy level. republicans have a lot of intensity because of barack obama. democratic intensity was a little flat. they seem to be repairing that. by the way, everybody is being very nice to me. >> they're all very intent at least inside the time warner cable arena. >> one of the reasons they're nice to alex, he is standing by me, i protect him a bit. >> tied me to the roof of their car across the road. >> this isn't bill clinton's convention. remember, michelle obama was strong tuesday. >> powerful speech. >> just like '08.
bill clinton was strong. >> will it be three for three? >> first of all, telling you now, vice president joe biden is not going to be a quiet figure on stage. the president has the pressure, he is competitive, he doesn't want to be second or third in pecking order, he wants to take it up. to your point, the energy is different. the point is with a convention, you get the -- with the first day, second day, i heard from democrats saying okay, you know what, i been one of the folks laying back, now it is time for game on. >> i wonder, barack obama has a tough job. bill clinton gave a lot of his speech last night. it is a little anti-climactic for the president. he has to say something new and has to say something a new democrat would say. here is what we're going to do about the debt and deficit. maybe i will go back to simpson bowls. unless he does something, it will fall flat. >> not holding my breath waiting
for him to say i am going back to simpson-bowles. >> he will deal with that issue. i would appropriate president obama like he deals with voter suppression, real in ohio with recent federal court decisions, and the other piece, the president i think should be on the offensive, be aggressive, and make a claim in terms of this is how i will fight for you and when the opposition chooses to hold up, i am going to enlist you in this battle and tell them don't stop america from growing because you don't like this part. >> i bet you, wolf, somewhere in a little room in this place, they're rewriting some of barack obama's speech tonight because i think bill clinton gave a lot of it last night. i would be curious to add. >> president clinton talked about what happened from the moment he came in. the president will say this is what i will do today moving forward. >> a problem they had to move indoors on the third night? third night in denver last time
at mile high stadium, back of the stadium was ready. >> it is stormy out there and wet and you hear a rumble. thank heavens they did. two, i think this is not election about grandeur and big promises. he has to get on stage and talk about getting things done. i think it is a plus to be in here. >> all right, guys, we have to leave it there. we will continue. stand by, live coverage of the democratic national convention. a civil rights icon is about to take the stage. stand by. and stays up.it goes p [ chirp ] with android apps, you get better quality control. so our test flights are less stressful. i've got a lot of paperwork, and time is everything here. that's why i upgraded to the new sprint direct connect. [ chirp ] and the fastest push-to-talk nationwide. [ male announcer ] upgrade to the new "done." [ chirp ] with access to the fastest push to talk, three times the coverage, and android productivity apps. now when you buy one motorola admiral rugged smartphone,
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this election is not about ideology, it is about confidence of the. >> i still believe in a place called hope. >> i stand here tonight as my own man. i want you to know me for who i truly am. >> i am john kerry and i am reporting for duty. >> america, we cannot turn back. final night of the democratic convention under way in charlotte, north carolina. we want to welcome viewers in the united states and around the
world. i am wolf blitzer. >> i am anderson cooper. every minute of this week has been leading up to this very night. president obama's speech as he makes his case for re-election. >> john lewis, congressman from georgia, historic civil rights leader is speaking now, anderson. let's listen in. >> a recent supreme court ruling, we tested the waiting room, restroom facility, but here is charlotte, north carolina, a young african-american tried to get a shoe shine at the greyhound bus station. he was arrested and taken to jail. on that same day, we traveled to south carolina, about 25 miles
from here, when my seat meat and i tried to go to the waiting roonl, we were met by an angry mob that beat us and left us in a pool of blood. some police officers came up and asked us whether we wanted to press charges. we said no. we come in peace, love, and nonviolence. we said our struggle was not against individuals but against unjust laws and customs. our goal, true freedom for every american. since then, america made a lot of progress. we are a different society than we were in 1961. and in 2008, we showed the world a true promise of america where
we elected president barack obama. a few years ago, a man from rock hill inspired by president obama's election decided to come forward. he came to my office in washington and said i am one of the people who beat you. i want to apologize. will you forgive me. i said i accept your apology. he started crying. he gave me a hug. i hugged him back. and we both started crying. this man and i don't want to go back. we don't want to go back. [ applause ]
brothers and sisters, do you want to go back? or do you want to keep america moving forward? your vote is precious. almost sacred. it is the most powerful nonviolent truth we have to create a more perfect union. people stood in unmovable lines. they had to pass a so-called literacy test. pay a poll tax. on occasion, a man was asked to count the number of bubbles in a bar of soap. on another occasion, one was asked to count jellybeans in a jar, all to keep them from passing their ballot. today it is unbelievable that
there are republican officials trying to stop some people from voting. they're changing the rules. cutting important hours and imposing tenant to suppress the vote. republican leader in the pennsylvania house even bragged that his state's new voter id law is going to allow governor romney to win the state. that's not right! that's not fair, and that is not just! [ applause ] and similar efforts have been made in texas, ohio, florida, wisconsin, arizona, georgia, and south carolina. i have seen this before. i lived this before.
too many people struggle, suffer, and die to make it possible for every american to exercise their right to vote. [ applause ] we have come too far together to ever turn back, so democrats, we must not be silent, we must stand up, speak up, speak out. [ applause ] we must march to the polls like never, ever before. we must come together and exercise our sacred right and
together on november 6, we will reelect the man that will lead america forward, president barack obama. [ cheers and applause ] >> congressman john lewis, legendary civil rights leader, really getting this crowd excited here. wow, what a speech. beau biden joins us live, delaware attorney general happens to be the son of the vice president of the united states. your job tonight, you're going to nominate your dad for a second term. >> that's right. i'm looking forward to it. it is a great honor. >> any problems? you pretty confident? >> i did this one time four years ago. >> give us a preview.
what do you hope to share with all of us people watching here and around the world. >> when i did it four years ago, i was leaving for iraq. i asked the delegates and american people to be there for my dad and they were, but really what i am going to talk about tonight is how he has been there for them, how he has been an incredible, exceptional leader in this country, a partner with the president. >> you served a year in iraq even as your dad was vice president. >> that's right. in fact, i will talk about him visiting iraq when i was there fourth of july 2009. >> you were with delaware national guard? >> i was. i'll give you a preview. he did a naturalization ceremony. whether they're in a federal district courthouse in america or even move moving in iraq. you see people put on our uniform, put their name on their chest and u.s. army and fight for a country they're not even citizens of. >> have you been talking to your dad about what he will say during the 9:00 p.m. eastern
hour tonight? >> he is going to talk about what an exceptional commander in chief the president has been, how he has a bird's eye view, a partnership with this president. look, there's no one that's been closer to the president to watch him make the decisions he's made since the moment he took office. you'll see a personal perspective of what this president has done. >> share some insights into what he sees this president behind the scenes as going on? >> what he is seen at his side the last three-and-a-half years in terms of what they inherited and what they've done and will achieve the next four years. >> you heard suggestions that 2006, your dad will be 74 years old. is that realistic he may run for president in 2016? >> november 6 is the only date we are focused on in the biden household, making sure the president of the united states is reelected. >> what about you? attorney general in delaware? >> greatest honor, being attorney general is the greatest honor. i told you this before, it is being in the military, wearing
the uniform. >> we know you and your dad, you went through some serious issues way, way back when your mom passed away and all of that. are you going to get into that tonight? >> i am not. my mom, i had two moms, you know. my mom is going to introduce my dad. you see my mom, a teacher from northern virginia college. i have been a blessed child. i had a mom, two moms, and sister and brother that are extraordinary. if i am half as good a dad two kids as my mom and dad have been to me -- >> took that train from washington, d.c. to union station to wilmington, delaware every day. was a long commute. >> did a great event at the train museum, my kids were running around, my dad stopped to look at the trains in green bay. it is part of his journey. he has been on that train back and forth, making sure he comes home at night, tuck us into bed, have dinner, wake up with a bad
dream, want to get in bed with him, be there, have a bowl of cereal in the morning. >> look forward to your mom and dad's remarks. the whole family on stage behind me. >> thanks very much. >> the delaware attorney general. we are awaiting the president of the united states. he will be speaking obviously later tonight. what is he going to say? stay with us. [ male announcer ] the perfect photo... [ man ] nice! [ male announcer ] isn't always the one you plan to take. whoa, check it out. hey baby goat... no that's not yours... [ hikers whispering ] ...that's not yours. [ goat bleats ] na, na, na -- no! [ male announcer ] now you can take a photo right from video, so you'll never miss the perfect shot. [ hikers laughing, commenting ] at&t introduces the htc one x.
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tonight? >> reporter: we have been talking to obama officials pretty much all day as they have been trying to tee up the president's speech. what they insist is that he is going to give more specifics than we've heard from others about what he will do in a second term. remember, the democrats were pretty hard on mitt romney last week because he did not give a lot of specifics about what he would do as president. they insist he is going to give concrete achievable things in his speech, and that by the end of his speech, the american people, not just democrats here in the arena out there watching, but everybody will have a better sense of the kind of president he would be and kind of goals and what he hopes to achieve in the second term. the other thing we're watching for is the vice president. you heard beau biden, the president's son speak with wolf blitzer, giving us a little of what we're hearing as well, which is that he is going to be a character witness of the professional sort. we heard michelle obama a couple days ago talk about president obama as a husband and father
and so forth. what joe biden will do is talk about what he is like as a leader, give anecdotes about tough decisions he made on the way. that's the kind of thing we have been given about the key speeches. most important, the president accepting the nomination. >> dana, mary j. blige taking the stage. let's listen in. ♪
♪ >> thank you! [ cheers and applause ] >> the one and only mary j. blige has everybody on their feet. getting the first excerpts from president obama's speech tonight. you'll hear them after the break. ♪ [ male announcer ] its lightweight construction makes it nimble... ♪ its road gripping performance makes it a cadillac. introducing the all-new cadillac xts. available with advanced haldex all-wheel drive. [ engine revving ]
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performance. you performed in front of a soldout crowd. any different? >> this is definitely different because it is our president and i just feel so blessed to be a part of this again, you know. i sang at the inauguration. to have him call me back, request mary j. blige again, it means so much. this is the man that is, you know, in control of our country, you know, he is helping us to figure out how to help ourselves. i think it is wonderful, the message. i am just happy, really happy that i am here. i feel blessed, you know? >> you are long time vocal supporter of president obama. how do you great him after four years. in a recent interview, he gave himself an incomplete. what grade would you give president obama after his first term? >> i would give him an a, he is a human being that got tossed a lot of mess, and with the mess
he was tossed, i think he did a great job, seriously, like he is only one man, you know? and he has -- he is really smart with what he did. he took all of the mess and made it into an on-going process of fixing -- he can't do everything by himself. i think he did a great job with what he got. >> a lot of people were asking me as we were coming over, one of your big hits is "no more drama." have you thought of suggesting that ahead of the election as the theme song for president obama, "no more drama"? >> for anyone going through drama, it is the perfect theme song. yeah, just for people to chill out, let the man do his job, yeah. no more drama. leave president obama alone. let him finish his work. >> mary j. blige, thank you for your time. a wonderful performance this
evening. thank you. back to you. >> thanks very much. thank her on behalf of all of us. we really enjoyed her performance. let's dig deeper into what the president of the united states will be saying. chief white house correspondent jessica yellin is getting excerpts of what he is going to say. >> that's right. they say the speech will be a largely positive speech in which he will talk about his last three-and-a-half years in office and challenges he faced, go into more detail how he plans to tackle it second term. you can see it in this one excerpt i am about to read. he says he will say in part i won't pretend the path -- here we go. the second one. he says know this, america. our problems can be solved, our challenges can be met. the path we offer may be harder, than the republicans he is suggesting, but it leads to a better place. and i'm asking you to choose that future. it goes on to say i'm asking you to rally around a set of goals for our country, lists goals in
manufacturing, energy, education, national security and the deficit. we don't have a graphic of this, but at the bottom of the excerpts is a list of some of his goals, and he says, for example, create 1 million new manufacturing jobs by end of 2016, national security, invest in the economy with money we're no longer spending on war. the case they're trying to make is that the republicans said they were going to tackle the hard decisions, but the democrats argue in their convention, the republicans didn't specify what hard choices they'll tackle and how and they'll make the argument in this speech, the president will specify the hard choices he's making. don't expect a full second term agenda, but this is the kind of details he will layout. >> he goes into specifics in terms of what he says by the end of the second term if he is reelected, he is going to double that support by end of 2014, cut oil imports in half by 2020. support 600,000 natural gas jobs
by the end of the decade. are you surprised as the chief white house correspondent in a speech like this tonight he is going to outline these and several other specific agenda items, goals that he is setting for himself? >> it is unusual perhaps for a convention speech but because the president's particular challenge is to show americans that he understands the problem the nation is facing in the economy and that he knows how to tackle it, this they believe is the way to convey that message, that he is up to the challenge and the ultimate goal for him is to show that he is the only person who really could take on the next four years, that they want him to leave this stage with the viewers thinking no one else could fill those shoes. >> we're not going to hear bl blistering attacks? >> no, and not from vice president joe biden. he is the one that does the red
meat. i am told he will contrast, more subtle distinctions, but will not go on a blistering attack against mitt romney. >> what's the theory behind that? >> the theory being negative diminishes both men and by being positive it seems more presidential and there have been a series of speakers leading up to today who have been able to be negative and that frees up vice president biden and the president to assume the presidential commander in chief position and stay more positive. >> take the high road. jessica, thanks, good work. we're going to be digging deeper on this speech. our political panel is standing by, so is anderson cooper. we will be right back. ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] introducing a reason...to look twice. introducing a stunning work of technology --
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secretary ari fleischer, and senior political analyst, david gergen. talk about what you expect from the president's speech tonight. paul? >> what way hoping for, an agenda. >> specific items about the next four years. >> yes. there's a thing that says the president is eloquent -- i went back and read some of his speeches, but even some of his better campaign speeches like last convention speech, he gives some specifics. this time is more important than ever. he has to give an agenda forward. he has given us in excerpts released five very clear specific goals on manufacturing, energy, education, and the deficit. so far so good from my perspective. >> are they goals that appeal to folks in the center, independents, that small number of people out there? >> all due respect, wrong question. are they goals he can achieve, policies to achieve? you know what, we have heard the same goals before from president obama and he hasn't fulfilled
them. take one in this speech just distributed. he promises to cut oil imports in half by 2020. 8 years from now. here is what he said four years ago. his convention in 2008 he said for the sake of security for our economy, i will set a clear goal as president, in ten years end our dependence on oil in the middle east. that was four years ago. >> excuse me. >> four years later hasn't done it. he is resetting the goalpost, not accomplishing the promises he made. >> for the first time since 1997, this year, america is importing less than 50% of its energy. so far so good. >> that's because -- >> production -- >> domestic production is at an all-time high or higher than when an oil man was president of the united states. >> paul, the issue is we have reliance, the national economy is so weak, we don't have the need for it the way we did in
the past. he made a series of promises he didn't fulfill. did the same four years ago. >> what do you think? >> we are going to have a squabble. i think the most interesting thing about the speech we've seen so far is that he clearly wants to make this election about the future, what path do you want to take into the future. he wants to avoid making this election a referendum on the past, on the last four years, wants to make it about the next four years. it is smart, smart politics, but the republicans will not accept that as being what this election is fully about. it is also about making a judgment about his performance in office. >> here is the thing. romney left him a real opening because mitt romney's speech at his convention was not full of specifics, so if you want to talk about the future, there is a vacuum there that the president can now fill. bill clinton talked about the past, obviously the obama campaign wants to make this a
choice election, not a referendum on the economy. if it is a choice and you didn't get specifics from mitt romney because he was busy introducing himself, right, you didn't get a lot of specifics, so the president can now come out and say i want to do these things. by the way, the deficit issue is something he said before. it is essentially adopting simpson-bowles, which he didn't adopt. >> hasn't adopted yet. >> saying reduce the deficit more than 4 trillion in the next decade, which is what that said. >> he promised he would cut it in half by end of his first term. that's my point. >> i am saying he has said this before. >> is he believable? is he credible when he makes promises? will people listen to his promises? it is a big challenge. i find this fascinating. four years ago he was the face and voice for change. now he has to come out and convince the american people don't change. he can't say stay the course.
has he to give some different specifics. when you look at things, supporters going through will criticize us for doing this, gloria is right. 4 trillion dollars deficit cut, he was trying to negotiate that with john boehner. to restate it, fine. create 1 million manufacturing jobs by 2016. the democrats -- if we get slightly better growth, that's what the economy will produce naturally. it is good to get some specifics from leaders in both parties. that's not a gang buster pledge in the sense if any president can get decent economic growth, those are the numbers we follow. >> here is the task republicans have to accomplish after tonight's speech. they have to remind people of previous promises. there were so many in the 2008 convention, including i will lower your premiums for those of you with health insurance. no one has had premiums lowered. he promised he would renew
diplomacy with iran four years ago. thankfully, that's not one promise he was able to fulfill. said he would eliminate capital gains for small business four years ago. he has a long track record of making specific promises that he cannot and does not fulfill. >> when he does, republicans claim he didn't. across america, they're getting refunds from health insurance companies because of obama care and health inflation at the lowest level in 10 or 20 years because of obama care. he kept that promise. >> some of this on specifics, ought to wait to see the rest of the speech. promise toss reduce the deficit. >> in terms of specifics delivered in a folksy way -- >> the bar has been raise the the previous two nights, been set up better than any candidate come in on nomination. michelle obama gave pieople a
sense of heart. he is in position, if he delivers a good speech, he is very strong. >> here is the other thing, bill clinton opened the door to bipartisanship, talking about it an awful lot last night. will president obama walk through, say you know what, i can work with republicans. >> it is packed. earlier the doors were shut down, lines are long for folks still trying to get in. a lot of anticipation about the speech. we will bring more details ahead. the philadelphia mayor michael nutter will be speaking live next. be right back.
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all our viewers. he has come over to join me for a couple of questions. you performed earlier today. you are also a long time vocal supporter of president obama. there's a lot of talk of the high bar set for him this evening in this big speech. what do you think is the test set forth for the president tonight? >> i think he has to bring us together, he has to outline the mission that we democrats who want to see him in office a second term, what we need to do to help him stay in office. i think he has to communicate with the american people about what he plans to do. >> and you're going to be campaigning for the president the next two months as well as you told me as well as the massachusetts senate candidate. when you were out performing in front of crowds, how do you make the case for another four years for president obama? the economy is rough, people are still hurting out there. >> i know, and that's -- my main message is just a positive one.
i, in my experience, and it is a deep one, goes back to 1956, my experience of presidential elections and politics, this is my favorite president, bar none. i think he is an intelligent public servant, he is focused, he is level headed, he is a cool hand on the helm, and i think that he is a deeply compassionate man. i am fiercely proud of my country for electing this man. >> real quickly, i hear you're sitting with the first lady in the vip box this evening. has she given any hints what the president is talking about? >> none whatsoever. we haven't spoken up until now. we've done a couple of events together, some rallies together, but i haven't seen her since we got here to charlotte. >> james taylor, thank you very much. >> thank you. >> wolf, i know you're jealous. this is one of your favorite musicians. wolf?
>> he is, how sweet it is. thanks very much. i want to go right to the podium. the mayor of philadelphia, michael nutter, is the new chairman -- president of the conference. >> matters to our classmates, to all our public school students in philadelphia. and that's what matters. to mitt romney, education is a luxury. as governor, he vetoed universal pre-k. in his first year, k-12 school saw dramatic cuts that led to teacher layoffs. he failed his students. what has he learned from all of this? all the wrong lessons. he failed the education test, now wants a promotion. his budget would mean fewer teachers and bigger class sizes, fewer pell grants, costing our country millions of college graduates, and he wants to put big banks back in the student
loan business. just ask him about affording college. like one high schooler did in ohio. romney's answer? shop around. here are some wiser words from a great philadelphian, ben franklin. he said investment in knowledge pays the best interest. sounds like mitt romney could stand to learn a thing or two about investing. our economy grows from the middle out, not the top down. we're all in this together. i learned that lesson growing up in west philly. when i shovelled the sidewalk, my parents didn't let me stop with our house. they told me to keep shoveling all the way to the corner. i had a responsibility to my community, and that's what being mayor is all about. we take care of our own. we keep our neighbors safe, clear the snow from their streets, educate their kids.
we get stuff done. and for barack obama, that's what being president is all about. he knows coming together as a nation starts by coming together as neighbors. that's why after graduating, barack obama went to a chicago neighborhood to help jobless workers in the shadow of a closed down steel mill. after mitt romney graduated, he became a corporate buyout specialist that closed down steel mills. whose values do you want in the oval office? well, i know who i want and i know who philly wants and i know who pennsylvania wants and i know who you want, and i know who the middle class needs, president barack obama! [ cheers and applause ]
>> i could not be prouder of the work we have done on behalf of the lbgt community. it is no secret that progress has been incredibly difficult. it's about our capacity to love and commit to one another. it is about whether or not we value as a society that love and commitment. it is about our common humanity and willingness to walk in someone else's shoes. imagine worrying about a spouse in the hospital with the added fear you'll have to produce a legal document just to comfort the person you love. imagine the pain of losing a partner of decades, then discovering that the law treats you like a stranger. we still have a long way to go, but we will get there. my expectation is that when you look back on these years, you
will see a time in which we put a stop to discrimination against gays and lesbians. you will see a time in which we as a nation finally recognize relationships between two men or two women as just as real and admirable as relationships between a man and a woman. you'll seewoman. you will see a nation that's valuing and cherishing these families as we build a more perfect union. where no matter what you look like or where you come from or who you love, you can dream big dreams. [ applause ] >> please welcome zach wahls of iowa city, iowa. [ cheers and applause ] >> thank you, charlotte. my name is zach wahls.
thank you. my name is zach wahls. i'm a sixth generation iowan, an eagle scout, and i was raised by my two moms, jackie and terry. [ applause ] now, people always want to know what it's like having lesbian parents. so let you in on a little secret. i'm awesome at putting the seat down. [ applause ] otherwise, we're like any other family. we eat dinner. we go to church. we have chores. some people don't see it that way. when i was 12, watching the 2004 republican convention, i remember politicians talking about protecting marriage from families like mine. now, supporting a view of marriage is between a man and woman isn't radical. for many people, it's a matter of faith. we respect that. watching that convention on tv though i felt confused,
frustrated. why didn't they think my family was a real family? governor romney says he's against same sex marriage because every child deserbs a mother and a father. i think every child deserves a family as loving and as committed as mine. [ applause ] because the sense of family comes from the commitment we make to each other to work through the hard times so we can enjoy the good ones. it comes from the love that finds us. that's what makes a family. mr. romney, my family is just as real as yours. president obama understands that. he supports my mom's marriage. president obama put his political future on the line to do what was right. without his leadership, we wouldn't be here. president obama is fighting for
our families. all our families. he has our backs. and, ladies and gentlemen, we have his. thank you, charlotte, and thank you, president obama. [ applause ] >> getting a huge applaud here at the democratic national convention. zach wahls speaking on behalf of his support for gay marriage. obviously, sensitive issue. gabby giffords, caroline kennedy, scarlett johansson, they are standing by. much more our special coverage right after this. you see us, at the start of the day. on the company phone list that's a few names longer.
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some kite kitement of a different kind at the democratic national convention. >> reporter: just another convention speech. the cameras panned around looking for interesting shots before cutting back to the speaker. wait a minute, wasn't that eva longoria petting jessica alba, petting her? >> but we are coming back, not as fast as we want or need -- >> reporter: what we need to know is what that was all about. i am so turned on, right now, tweeted one guy. someone tweeting under the name chloe the dog whined, i wish she would pet me. to thing mere moments before piers morgan was making longoria cough up a high heel. >> look at the -- >> my shoes. >> absolutely extraordinary. >> reporter: but importance
pales compared to what the website buzz feed called easily the hottest moment of this year's democratic convention. it's got competition from this. what gawker called a tender bro hug. a hug accompanied by six back slaps. a rub and one more slap for good measure. still, that wasn't petting. jessica alba started it by pointing at her arm. chances are these two were discussing, say, a new skin cream or laser hair removal or maybe a tennis injury. >> the energy here is incredible. >> reporter: jessica sent out a twit pic posing with eva. we got a hold of jessica's husband but new he nor any pr reps got back to us. now, eva longoria is a political activist. she's an obama campaign co-chair. the convention is serious business for her. stop it. get your minds out of the
gutter. if you're that desperate, watch reruns of "desperate housewives." >> was it this? >> reporter: this isn't a convention of desperate voyeurs. jeanne moos, cnn, new york. cnn's coverage of the democratic national convention continues right now. >> the president is a servant of today but his true constituency is the future. >> america is a future that each generation much enlarge. >> because this election is not about ideology. it's about confidence. >> i still believe in a place called hope. >> i stand here tonight as my own man and i want you to know me for who i truly am. >> i'm john kerry and i'm reporting for