[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/27/art.hillary.dnc.jpg caption="New York Senator and former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton acknowledges the audience as she takes the stage at the Democratic National Convention,Tuesday."]
Editor’s note: Below is a transcript of CNN Senior Political Analyst David Gergen's response to Sen. Hillary Clinton's speech at the Democratic National Convention last night. What was your take?
COOPER: I want to bring in David Gergen, who worked in the Clinton administration, as well as worked in several Republican presidential administrations. David Gergen, had you ever seen Hillary Clinton deliver a speech like this?
GERGEN: No, and I must say, Anderson, I'm sure their cynics will find a lot wrong with that speech tonight but I thought she was a class act. In fact, I think it can well be said that nothing has so become her campaign as well as she ended it here tonight.
Her argument as Ed Rendell said, that if you were in this, you were in this all along for more than me. You're in this for the cause, so let's join. And then she did have some humor, that Twin Cities joke, about the Republicans going to the Twin Cities and that's a good place for them because it's hard to distinguish between McCain and Bush. That was well done. It was a nice line.
I thought overall, what you saw here tonight, the reason why I thought this was perhaps her finest hour in politics, it was so unselfish. It was not about her, it was about trying to help the cause and helping Barack Obama and in turn helping the country that she cares about.
So often the Clintons are accused, I think unfairly, of being selfish. But I think this was such a generous act. It was so clear she didn't hold anything back in her endorsement and her calls for unity.
It was an authentic call and I think it was a terrific speech. I think that's why Barack and Michelle Obama and Joe Biden should be so pleased tonight, because she did it. We talked earlier tonight about how impossible it was going to be to weave together the themes of women's rights, unity and the economy. And she did all of that, and masterfully and came out I think for the first time, the Democrats can leave this hall really charged up with a real sense of mission for November.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/27/art.obamatv.jpg caption="Sen. Barack Obama watches Sen. Hillary Clinton addressing the Democratic National Convention at a Democratic supporters' group in Billings, Montana, Tuesday."]
Editor's note: Below is a transcript of CNN Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley's response to Sen. Hillary Clinton's speech at the Democratic National Convention last night. What did you think?
COOPER: Candy Crowley, who has been watching that speech, listening in from the platform. Candy from your perspective, you've seen a lot of Hillary Clinton speeches.
CROWLEY: Absolutely. And what I've seen over the time as I started to cover her presidential race, which was last January or the January before last in 2007, is that this is a woman who delivers when she needs to. She is a clutch player. And she certainly seemed to do that tonight.
You saw from the reaction in the crowd, this wasn't just - I sort of expected it would be, well, here are the Hillary Clinton supporters, you can tell by that clapping. It was this whole crowd that she had on their feet, mostly for the entire time.
What did they say she was going to do when we talked to them? They said she was going to hit John McCain. Check. They said she was going to reach out to her supporters and thank them for what was a historic race. Check. They said that she would call for unity of the party to firmly back Barack Obama and challenge her supporters to look at what the choice is. Check.
They did everything that they said she would do.
I think in camp Obama tonight, they will be very pleased and I think it puts a lot of pressure on Barack Obama for Thursday night. I think he has to respond in kind in some way to make that unity hold.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/27/art.usher.jpg caption="Grammy winning music artist, Usher, kicks off his "I Can't But You Can" voter campaign in Detroit."]
Usher Raymond IV has many titles behind his name, Grammy winning mega-recording artist, songwriter, producer, actor, and now social activist. After a successful run in Atlanta, GA Usher kicked off his national “I Can’t But You Can” voter registration campaign in Detroit yesterday.
The day of events began at the Charles H. Wright Museum with a spirited pep rally and voter registration education session for Metro-Detroit Youth. The participants who attended came with the expectation of meeting one of music’s icons; however, they left with much more; which was the knowledge that they could make a difference in their communities, and this election.
The focus of yesterday’s activities are the root focus of his campaign, getting the youth involved in politics, the voter registration process, and voting process. He wants the youth to take charge of their future, and education!
David M. Reisner
AC360° Digital Producer
Their 2008 convention has hardly given Democrats time to relax and enjoy the festivities. The Obama campaign has spent two days swatting off attack ads, making nice with the Clintons and their delegates… and, oh yeah, retooling the party’s message with all eyes on Denver.
It’s been a mixed success. Barack Obama's choice of Sen. Joseph Biden for vice president has not given him any bump in national polls. In fact, a Gallup poll this week shows McCain now leading over Obama 46 to 44 percent, marking the first time since June that Obama has trailed. And the McCain camp is not holding back.
McCain has been trying to knock Obama and the Democrats off message during commercial breaks with a new ad using Hillary Clinton’s own words (and her 3am ad) against Obama. You can bet we’ll see the same with Biden’s critiques of Obama earlier this year.
Clinton’s speech last night was the biggest firecracker in the Democrats' box so far. She aimed to calm the nerves of a divided party and deflate McCain attempts to crash the party.
Obama has a lot of "healthy pressure," as David Gergen put it, to perform in the wake of her speech. Even if Obama’s "closing curtain" speech, as James Carville put it, ignites the party, the McCain camp has the water bucket ready to try dowsing the Democrats' fire, planning his own VP announcement Friday morning…and the Republican National Convention next week.
So it just might pay to go last this time…
But life isn't so simple. FULL POST
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/27/art.bill.dnc.jpg caption="Bill Clinton listened to his wife Sen. Hillary Clinton, address the Democratic National Convention from the sidelines, Tuesday. Tonight, he'll be taking center stage."]
AC360° Sr. Producer
Tonight Sen. Joe Biden gets his shot at the Democratic National Convention as his party's vice presidential nominee, but the most anticipated moment is when former President Bill Clinton takes the stage. Last night Sen. Hillary Clinton declared "Barack Obama is my candidate, and he must be our President" Tuesday night. Will her husband do the same?
In her speech Sen. Clinton urged her supporters "to unite as a single party with a single purpose". Obama arrives in Denver late this afternoon, on the day he will become the first African-American to win his party's nomination. The historic roll call is expected to see votes cast for Clinton before the voting will be cut short under a deal between the two camps, with Obama then nominated by acclimation.
Candy Crowley reported Wednesday that Senator Clinton will be in Invesco Field for Obama's acceptance speech, but a Bill Clinton source tells her the former President is not planning to attend.
The McCain campaign is releasing a new ad every day.Today's is called "Tiny" and, according to the campaign, highlights Barack Obama's statement that Iran "doesn't pose a serious threat."
Last night, McCain's people reacted quickly to Sen. Clinton's speech. Minutes after she left the stage, spokesman Tucker Bounds said, "Senator Clinton ran her presidential campaign making clear that Barack Obama is not prepared to lead as commander in chief. Nowhere tonight did she alter that assessment."
Watch for news about John McCain's running mate at any time. He's expected to unveil his pick at week's end – and that's soon.