So I watched the entire night of the RNC yesterday. I have to say that I was quite impressed by the speakers...I was not impressed by the coverage CNN had of the speeches. Why is it, that when a Republican makes a speech that reinforces our core principles and beliefs it is pandering to the base? When the DNC was going on, I never heard the analysts say, "Well, that speech was just for the base...that wasn't intended for the swing voters..." I have a newsflash for these pundits - I watched the DNC and thought that the entire lot of speeches was focused on the base! I disagreed vehemently with almost every speakers take on America and how they would "change" things. I am part of the Republican Party's base...but I have become disaffected. However, Sarah Palin's speech (combined with Mitt Romney's) really did a lot to comfort me and make me consider a vote for the McCain-Palin ticket...I think that some of what was said by all 4 major speakers last night must have nudged some swing voters. There was a lot of substantive speech last night, unlike at the DNC. The RNC has been full of "red meat" where issues are discussed not personalities. Here are the transcripts to all four major speeches, plus Micheal Steele's (who also did a great job), and my grade of the speech.
* Sarah Palin's VP acceptance speech. A+ Governor Palin knocked this speech out of the park, and really brought up some important differences between Obama and McCain.
* Mitt Romney's speech. A I thought Mitt did an excellent job explaining the importance of a conservative view of economics, and why our way is better.
* Mike Huckabee's speech to the RNC. B+/A- I really liked Huckabee's speech, I think he is an excellent communicator (kind of reminds me of the personal touch of Ronald Reagan or Bill Clinton). I thought the speech was perfect for swing voters in the fly-over states. Huckabee showed that the Republican Party is the party of the middle class...and that we live and work in middle America, not the big, all important media enhanced coastal cities.
* Rudy Giuliani 's rabid attack of the Democrat Party and its messiah Barrack Obama. A+++ I have never been a big Rudy fan...until last night. That was the ultimate partisan speech with the perfect amount of humor and candor about the "other" candidate. He may have been cutting...but his words were true, and that has to count for a lot.
* Micheal Steele is an intelligent guy who should have a bright future in politics...the only problem...he is from a state that won't vote for an African-American Republican. B His speech was a good apologetic for John McCain.
The long and the short of it for me was this...these speakers talked about policy and how Obama and McCain differ, and experience and how the candidates differ. They made a case for what McCain would do in office and how he would do it. While they all made the base feel more at ease with McCain, I felt they gave good arguments for why the swing voter in battleground states should be voting for John McCain.
All of this being said, I am still not voting for John McCain. Though I would much rather seem him in office than Barrack Obama, I cannot vote for McCain for the very reasons Joe Lieberman said that swing voters can. Bi-partisanship is watering down the right thing to do so that the wrong people are satisfied...and I cannot praise McCain for doing that. He reaches across the aisle way too often...I vote conservative for a reason...so my candidates will pass conservative legislation. Not so they will pass moderate legislation...or liberal legislation with a conservative spin.
* Great column on why Libertarians should feel comfortable with Sarah Palin. If McCain can steal some votes from Bob Barr and the Libertarians he could surprise the media with some key wins.
* This article from the Wall Street Journal shows that President Bush has little to apologize for when it comes to the economy.
* Sarah Palin is getting some positive press in the United Kingdom. From the Times, and from the Sun.
* The teleprompter broke during Rudy's speech and the problem carried over to Governor Palin's speech...but they both handled it like pro's...which is more than we can say for Obama.
* The New York Mets finished their sweep of the Brewers yesterday, and now find themselves up by 3 games over the Phillies. Hopefully, we can keep this momentum going forward into the Playoffs!!!