The last moments before you enter the stage and officially launch your campaign must be very intense. Knowing that your speech is in your hand, no time left to make some additional changes, trying to put on a smile and telling yourself to enjoy this moment as long as possible….
And then your name is called and people are cheering and waving in anticipation of your arrival. This is it. The moment you have working so hard for these last couple of months. All the people who stood by you, who believe in you and voluntarily helped you, are waiting.
Better make no mistakes, better deliver and make up for the great expectations that people have with the name of Hillary Clinton.
So what to make of her 46 minutes speech?
First and foremost it has to capture the imagination of the people who are present. It has to inspire and be realistic at the same time. It is about a vision and not so much the details of how to change policies. She did all that, not with the same rhetoric skills that Obama can use, but she was determined, confident and enthousiastic at certain moments.
Hillary used the place of Roosevelt island to put herself in the Roosevelt tradition. She evoked this tradition by referring to the Obama and Clinton administration. She presented herself as a progressive Democrat, putting families at the forefront of her campaing.
The four fights are that she wants to take on to become everyone’s champion: economy, families, national interests and progressive democracy are Issues that she knows very well from her life long public service career.
I thought it was a good speech, she was realistic and tried to to speak tot alle Americans. She made fun of herself, tried to score points with minorties by referring to immigrants, LGBT’s, racial issues, acces to health care and education, and above all she put herself in the tradition of true Democratic leaders. She praised Obama several times, as well as the Administration of her husband.
She framed Republicans by saying that they are all singing a song called ‘Yesterday’ which scored well with her audience. She accused Republicans of collective amnesia when summing up all the great things Democratic Presidents have achieved.
She was carefull not to go to deep into trivial matters and slippery sloped, which I thought she could be more open about. But I think she will come to those issues eventually, but not by choiche perhaps.
Did she inspire? Yes, I thought she painted a warm vision of how great the US can be when all Americans come together. It takes a village she said, Very simple, but at the something the village is her framework that can make her story work.
By making it personal at several moments, referring to her upbringing and the central role that her mother played in her life, she brushed her image of being distant and cold with some warm touches. By overdoing it she might have damaged her own image as being fake so I think the balance was just right.
For the people who are already with her there was not so much news to learn; for those critical of her, she made some interesting points about supporting a Constitutional Amendment for revoking Citizens United. Transparancy issues coming from a person like Hillary who has been attacked for these kind of exact things is a very wise move.
What now? Now she has to prove that she means business and follow up with concrete plans on how to win those 4 fights for every American and become their Champion in 2016.