Democratic National Convention: Highlights of President Obama's speech

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Philadelphia, July 28: President Barack Obama stood up for former senator and US secretary of state Hillary Clinton on the penultimate day of the Democratic National Convention here on Wednesday (July 27).

Here are some of the high points of Obama's speech which he delivered while endorsing Hillary, his rival of the 2008 presidential election [Read full speech here]

barack obama

Michelle hasn't aged a day

"You met my two little girls, Malia and Sasha - now two amazing young women who just fill me with pride. You fell for my brilliant wife and partner Michelle, who's made me a better father and a better man; who's gone on to inspire our nation as First Lady; and who somehow hasn't aged a day. I know the same can't be said for me. My girls remind me all the time. Wow, you've changed so much, daddy."

"A lot's happened over the years. And while this nation has been tested by war and recession and all manner of challenge - I stand before you again tonight, after almost two terms as your President, to tell you I am even more optimistic about the future of America."

"How could I not be - after all we've achieved together?"

America stronger and more prosperous today: Obama

"By so many measures, our country is stronger and more prosperous than it was when we started.
And through every victory and every setback, I've insisted that change is never easy, and never quick; that we wouldn't meet all of our challenges in one term, or one presidency, or even in one lifetime."

Taking on Republican camp's "deeply pessimistic" view of the US

"...Fair to say, this is not your typical election. It's not just a choice between parties or policies; the usual debates between left and right. This is a more fundamental choice - about who we are as a people, and whether we stay true to this great American experiment in self-government. Look, we Democrats have always had plenty of differences with the Republican Party, and there's nothing wrong with that; it's precisely this contest of ideas that pushes our country forward. But what we heard in Cleveland last week wasn't particularly Republican - and it sure wasn't conservative. What we heard was a deeply pessimistic vision of a country where we turn against each other, and turn away from the rest of the world. There were no serious solutions to pressing problems - just the fanning of resentment, and blame, and anger, and hate."

"And that is not the America I know."

"...there is only one candidate in this race who believes in that future, and has devoted her life to it; a mother and grandmother who'd do anything to help our children thrive; a leader with real plans to break down barriers, blast through glass ceilings, and widen the circle of opportunity to every single American - the next President of the United States, Hillary Clinton."

Obama calls Hillary Clinton "tough" 

"Now, eight years ago, Hillary and I were rivals for the Democratic nomination. We battled for a year and a half. Let me tell you, it was tough, because Hillary's tough. Every time I thought I might have that race won, Hillary just came back stronger."

"Hillary's still got the tenacity she had as a young woman working at the Children's Defense Fund, going door to door to ultimately make sure kids with disabilities could get a quality education.
She's still got the heart she showed as our First Lady, working with Congress to help push through a Children's Health Insurance Program that to this day protects millions of kids."

"She's still seared with the memory of every American she met who lost loved ones on 9/11, which is why, as a Senator from New York, she fought so hard for funding to help first responders; why, as Secretary of State, she sat with me in the Situation Room and forcefully argued in favor of the mission that took out bin Laden."

Hillary knows what's at stake in decisions US govt makes, says Obama

"...nothing truly prepares you for the demands of the Oval Office. Until you've sat at that desk, you don't know what it's like to manage a global crisis, or send young people to war. But Hillary's been in the room; she's been part of those decisions. She knows what's at stake in the decisions our government makes for the working family, the senior citizen, the small business owner, the soldier, and the veteran. Even in the middle of crisis, she listens to people, and keeps her cool, and treats everybody with respect. And no matter how daunting the odds; no matter how much people try to knock her down, she never, ever quits."

"...I can say with confidence there has never been a man or a woman more qualified than Hillary Clinton to serve as President of the United States of America."

"And, by the way, in case you were wondering about her judgment, look at her choice of running mate. Tim Kaine is as good a man, as humble and committed a public servant, as anyone I know. He will be a great Vice President, and he'll make Hillary a better President. Just like my dear friend and brother Joe Biden has made me a better President."

Obama slams Donald Trump, says he is neither a "plans" or "facts" guy 

"...there's Donald Trump. He's not really a plans guy. Not really a facts guy, either. He calls himself a business guy, which is true, but I have to say, I know plenty of businessmen and women who've achieved success without leaving a trail of lawsuits, and unpaid workers, and people feeling like they got cheated."

"Does anyone really believe that a guy who's spent his 70 years on this Earth showing no regard for working people is suddenly going to be your champion? Your voice? If so, you should vote for him. But if you're someone who's truly concerned about paying your bills, and seeing the economy grow, and creating more opportunity for everybody, then the choice isn't even close. If you want someone with a lifelong track record of fighting for higher wages, better benefits, a fairer tax code, a bigger voice for workers, and stronger regulations on Wall Street, then you should vote for Hillary Clinton."

"Hillary won't relent until IS is destroyed" 

"And if you're concerned about who's going to keep you and your family safe in a dangerous world - well, the choice is even clearer. Hillary Clinton is respected around the world not just by leaders, but by the people they serve. She's worked closely with our intelligence teams, our diplomats, our military. And she has the judgment, the experience, and the temperament to meet the threat from terrorism. It's not new to her. Our troops have pounded ISIL without mercy, taking out leaders, taking back territory. I know Hillary won't relent until ISIL is destroyed. She'll finish the job - and she'll do it without resorting to torture, or banning entire religions from entering our country. She is fit to be the next Commander-in-Chief."

"...Donald Trump calls our military a disaster. Apparently, he doesn't know the men and women who make up the strongest fighting force the world has ever known. He suggests America is weak. He must not hear the billions of men, women, and children, from the Baltics to Burma, who still look to America to be the light of freedom, dignity, and human rights. He cozies up to Putin, praises Saddam Hussein, and tells the NATO allies that stood by our side after 9/11 that they have to pay up if they want our protection."

America stronger and respected more today than it was 8 years ago 

"Well, America's promises do not come with a price tag. We meet our commitments. And that's one reason why almost every country on Earth sees America as stronger and more respected today than they did eight years ago."

"America is already great. America is already strong. And I promise you, our strength, our greatness, does not depend on Donald Trump. In fact, it doesn't depend on any one person. And that, in the end, may be the biggest difference in this election - the meaning of our democracy."

"Ronald Reagan called America "a shining city on a hill." Donald Trump calls it "a divided crime scene" that only he can fix. It doesn't matter to him that illegal immigration and the crime rate are as low as they've been in decades, because he's not offering any real solutions to those issues. He's just offering slogans, and he's offering fear. He's betting that if he scares enough people, he might score just enough votes to win this election."

"That is another bet that Donald Trump will lose. Because he's selling the American people short. We are not a fragile or frightful people. Our power doesn't come from some self-declared savior promising that he alone can restore order. We don't look to be ruled. Our power comes from those immortal declarations first put to paper right here in Philadelphia all those years ago; We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that together, We, the People, can form a more perfect union."

On gun violence 

"If you want to protect our kids and our cops from gun violence, we've got to get the vast majority of Americans, including gun owners, who agree on background checks to be just as vocal and determined as the gun lobby that blocks change through every funeral we hold. That's how change will happen."

"Hillary Clinton...been there for us - even if we haven't always noticed. And if you're serious about our democracy, you can't afford to stay home just because she might not align with you on every issue. You've got to get in the arena with her, because democracy isn't a spectator sport. America isn't about "yes he will." It's about "yes we can." And we're going to carry Hillary to victory this fall, because that's what the moment demands."

"America has changed over the years. But these values my grandparents taught me - they haven't gone anywhere. They're as strong as ever; still cherished by people of every party, every race, and every faith. They live on in each of us. What makes us American, what makes us patriots, is what's in here."

When the crowd booed at mention of Trump's name, Obama said "Don't boo. Vote"

 

"That's what matters. That's why we can take the food and music and holidays and styles of other countries, and blend it into something uniquely our own. That's why we can attract strivers and entrepreneurs from around the globe to build new factories and create new industries here. That's why our military can look the way it does, every shade of humanity, forged into common service. That's why anyone who threatens our values, whether fascists or communists or jihadists or homegrown demagogues, will always fail in the end."

"That's America. Those bonds of affection; that common creed. We don't fear the future; we shape it, embrace it, as one people, stronger together than we are on our own. That's what Hillary Clinton understands - this fighter, this stateswoman, this mother and grandmother, this public servant, this patriot - that's the America she's fighting for."

"Democratic Party is in good hands" 

"And that's why I have confidence, as I leave this stage tonight, that the Democratic Party is in good hands. My time in this office hasn't fixed everything; as much as we've done, there's still so much I want to do. But for all the tough lessons I've had to learn; for all the places I've fallen short; I've told Hillary, and I'll tell you what's picked me back up, every single time."

"It's been you. The American people."

 

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