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The Democrats finish their convention
ON THURSDAY NIGHT in Charlotte, President Obama asked America to hold on to hope because the change has just begun. Like his Republican opponent, Mitt Romney, he was fuzzy on the details. Still, the crowd at the Democratic National Convention roared its approval. One big job of the candidate is to energize the faithful. That Mr. Obama did.
But not without help. The consummate politician Bill Clinton had stirred delegates the night before with his folksy, savvy nomination speech. Mr. Clinton feels your pain before you even know you're hurt. Former presidential candidate John Kerry delivered a strong speech. Defining an "exceptional America" and chiding Mr. Romney for his lack of foreign-relations expertise and resultant dependence on advisers, the Democrats' 2004 presidential candidate said, "This is not the time to outsource the job of commander-in-chief!"
And Vice President Joe Biden spoke approvingly of Mr. Obama's courage, decisiveness, and faith in the American people. Only Bo Obama could have proffered a more loyal testimony.
Mr. Obama's essential message seemed to be "we've done better than you think." Saddled with a failing economy--see Friday's jobs report--and recalcitrant Republicans, what more could a country expect of any president? He was feisty and confident, sharply criticizing Mr. Romney and the Republican Party, and pointing to a future he envisions as one in which "our problems can be solved."
He just didn't quite say how.
"I'm asking you to rally around a set of goals for your country, goals in manufacturing, energy, education, national security, and the deficit; real, achievable plans that will lead to new jobs, more opportunity, and rebuild this economy on a stronger foundation. That's what we can do in the next four years," said Mr. Obama. If he has any blueprints for this grand renaissance, he, like his Republican rival, did not unroll them. How would he handle the looming Medicare crisis? Global warming? The $16 trillion national debt? What would he do to recruit (and pay for) "100,000 math and science teachers within 10 years"?