One thing became clear Thursday night in Charlotte and that is that Barack Obama is no Bill Clinton.
Bill Clinton riveted the hall Wednesday night with a spirited defense of President Obama, support for bipartisanship and a very clear notion of where we need to go as a country and how to get there.
Not so, President Obama.
As one of the advisers in the president’s circle told me immediately after the speech, it was straightforward…and pedestrian. Meaning that there was nothing new, nothing bold and nothing in Mr. Obama’s acceptance speech that will be remembered much past Sunday.
Certainly, it’s possible that the convention as a whole could well give the Democrats the slight bounce they need to reclaim a narrow lead in the presidential race. But if anyone believes that President Obama’s speech was a game changer, they are sadly mistaken.
There was nothing aspirational, there was nothing really future-oriented in the president’s steadfast defense of the path he’s been pursuing for the past four years.
Rather President Obama’s speech reminded me of one of President Reagan’s less successful, less emotive campaign themes — the “stay the course” assertion that Reagan made during the 1982 midterm elections which resulted in modest Democratic losses in both the House and the Senate.
And given tonight’s speech, there’s no reason to believe that the results of the president’s address will be anywhere near as successful as President Reagan’s much more well-remembered “Morning in America” campaign in 1984.
Now both conventions are over with the only unexpected result being that former President Clinton still would win either a Democratic primary or general election — hands down.
Douglas E. Schoen is a political strategist, Fox News contributor, author of the new book, “Hopelessly Divided: The New Crisis in American Politics and What it Means for 2012 and Beyond” (Rowman and Littlefield). Follow Doug on Twitter @DouglasESchoen.