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August 26th, 2008
09:43 AM ET

Dems too civil in Denver?

Michelle Obama, wife of Democratic Presidential candidate Barack Obama, acknowledges supporters at the Democratic National Convention 2008, Monday.

Michelle Obama, wife of Democratic Presidential candidate Barack Obama, acknowledges supporters at the Democratic National Convention 2008, Monday.

John Avlon
Author, Independent Nation: How Centrists Can Change American Politics

Coming out of the Democrats' first night in Denver, there's been some criticism in the spin rooms that the tone was too civil – not Bush-bashing enough. But the last thing that centrist and independent voters want is an angry Party of Obama.

The Bush administration has done its own work in alienating these swing voters – leading to the Republican repudiation of 2006. And no doubt future nights of the convention will take on a more prosecutorial tone. But it was right to begin this convention by aiming for a unifying, optimistic note. The Democrats' outreach to the evangelical center and opening the stage to Senator Bob Casey – whose father, the pro-life Governor of Pennsylvania, was denied a speaking role in 1996 – are part of this more inclusive tone.

Reporters are now buzzing that former Virginia Governor and current senate candidate Mark Warner – who is giving the keynote address Tuesday night – is refusing to go negative, saying that it's out of step with his self-described "radical centrist" philosophy. Warner has the experience of turning a "red" state "blue" – something that Dems are trying to do nationwide. In states like Colorado – where Independents now outnumber Democrats and Republicans – the centrist approach is the proven way to win. And centrism means civility.
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August 26th, 2008
05:54 AM ET

Morning Buzz: Clinton Time

Sen. Hillary Clinton will be speaking tonight at the Democratic National Convention, another step at trying to unify the Democratic party.

Sen. Hillary Clinton will be speaking tonight at the Democratic National Convention, another step at trying to unify the Democratic party.

Ted Fine
AC360° Sr. Producer

Good morning from Denver. Did you see Ted Kennedy's moment last night? I was in the hall when he walked on stage. The crowd roared as loud – or louder – than Avalanche fans for a goal on the Pepsi Center ice.

Here's a look at today's coming attractions with some from the CNN political staff's notes.

Tonight is the Clinton's night in Denver. Sen. Hillary Clinton is the star, another step in trying to unify the Democratic party. Another sign of the efforts to patch up any behind the scenes tension, a deal was struck on Wednesday's roll call. The agreement confirmed by CANDY CROWLEY will allow some votes to be cast for Clinton before a call for Obama to be nominated by acclimation. (Clinton herself may be the one to call for the voting to be cut short).
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