Clyburn invokes Kennedy
in convention speech
U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn echoed former President John F. Kennedy in his speech Thursday night to the Democratic National Convention, saying President Barack Obama has lit candle after candle to end the recession “only to see Republicans douse the flames and amuse themselves cursing the darkness.”
Kennedy said in 1960, “We are not here to curse the darkness, but to light the candle that can guide us through that darkness.” Clyburn pointed out the “candles” that Obama has lit during his presidency, including killing Osama bin Laden, ending the Iraq war and passing health care reform.
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“We should not run from the term Obamacare,” Clyburn said. “I am glad Obama cares.”
Clyburn criticized Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney for adopting the budget plan of his vice presidential pick, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin. That plan, Clyburn said, will “cut taxes for the wealthiest one percent, end the guarantee of Medicare and it would try to balance the budget on the backs of hard-working Americans.”
The return of Eva Braun
Former Gov. Jim Hodges’ message about taking back the Governor’s Mansion on Thursday drew a repeat of a controversial comment about Gov. Nikki Haley made Wednesday by S.C. party chairman Dick Harpootlian.
At the delegation’s breakfast, Hodges said candidates needed troops to win elections.
“General (Dwight) Eisenhower had a great game plan to win World War II when we went into the Battle of Normandy,” he said. “But what would have happened if they didn’t have the troops to fight those battles? Think about that. We’d be speaking German now.”
“With Eva Braun,” a delegate responded.
“Maybe I shouldn’t have mentioned the Germany analogy,” Hodges responded.
Video features ‘Fired up’ genesis
Edith Childs’ “Fired up! Ready to go!” chant, which became a staple of Obama’s 2008 campaign, was featured in a three-minute video at the convention Thursday.
The video included a humorous interchange between the Greenwood activist and the president using cutaways between an interview with Childs and a speech by Obama.
Obama arrived at the Greenwood Civic Center in 2007 after a long commute and suffered an umbrella failure: “I’m mad and wet. And, lo and behold, after an hour-and-a-half drive, turnout? There are 20 people.”
Childs said: “He had this grin on this face, like, ‘Maybe, I’m in the wrong place.’ ”
Obama said the crowd looked sleepy and then a small women in a church hat yelled, “Fired Up!”
“I remember the senator didn’t know what was going on by the look on his face,” Childs said.
Childs smiled at Obama and continued chanting.
Said Obama: “I’m thinking, ‘She’s stealing my thunder.’ Here’s the thing, after a minute or so, I’m feeling kind of fired up. I’m feeling like I’m ready to go. So I joined in the chant.”
Obama said Childs’ chant “shows one voice can change the world.”
A delegate returns 28 years later
The last time Barbara Bowers was a Democratic convention delegate, Geraldine Ferraro was the party’s vice presidential nominee and the Reagan revolution was in full swing.
Bowers was a New York delegate at the 1984 convention in San Francisco. The retired teacher and real estate agent from Northeast Richland said she returned, as a S.C. delegate, to show her support for Obama, whom she volunteered for in 2008.
Bowers arrived at the Time Warner Cable Arena at 1:15 p.m. Thursday, more than three hours before speeches started, taking a seat near the front row of the S.C. section. “I want to hear everybody,” she said. “Being a delegate, it’s work.”
She was joined by several early arrivers, including state Reps. Gilda Cobb-Hunter of Orangeburg and John King of York, who were concerned about beating the crowds expected for convention events that were switched from Bank of America Stadium.