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CAMPAIGN 2012 DNC CONVENTION 090412 9PM SWITCHED POOL
09/04/2012
ABC
NYU105705
CAMPAIGN 2012 / INT BROLL DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION / SWITCHED POOL FEED STACEY LIHN 20:55:01 Governor Romney says people like me were the most excited about President Obama the day we voted for him. But that's not true. Not even close. 20:55:12 For me, there was the day the Affordable Care Act passed and I no longer had to worry about Zoe getting the care she needed. 20:55:22 There was the day the letter arrived from the insurance company, saying that our daughter's lifetime cap had been lifted. 20:55:31 There was the day the Supreme Court upheld Obamacare. 20:55:39 Like so many moms with sick children, I shed tears and I could breathe easier knowing we have that net below us to catch us if we fall, or if, God forbid, Zoe needs a heart transplant-Obamacare provides my family security and relief. 20:56:04 But we're also scared. Governor Romney repealing health care reform is something we worry about literally every day. Zoe's third open-heart surgery will happen either next year or the year after. 20:56:23 If Mitt Romney becomes president and Obamacare is repealed, there's a good chance she'll hit her lifetime cap. There's no way we could afford to pay for all the care she needs to survive. When you have a sick child, it's always in the back of your mind and sometimes in the front of your mind. 20:56:46 On top of that, to worry that people would let an insurance company take away her health care, just because of politics? 20:56:56 One in 100 children is born with a congenital heart defect. President Obama is fighting for them. He's fighting or families like mine. 20:57:14 And we need To fight for him. TED STRICKLAND, Former Gov of Ohio 20:58:18 Hello, I'm Ted Strickland, and I come from Duck Run, Ohio. Let me tell you, folks in Ohio know what happens when you have a president who stands up for average working people. 20:58:33 Ina Sidney is a grandmother who lost her ability to provide for her family when they closed down the auto plant in Perrysburg, Ohio. Ina says thanks to Barack Obama for having the courage to back an industry that others had given up on. She's an autoworker and a breadwinner once again. 20:58:57 As he celebrated the birth of his newborn baby boy, Brian Slagle lost his job just at the moment he needed it most. But today he's back making auto batteries in a factory in Springfield Township, Ohio. And he said there is only one reason he has a steady paycheck again: Barack Obama refused to let the American auto industry die. 20:59:30 James Fayson felt like there was no tomorrow when he was laid off. "I believe in working every day," he said, "and that was taken from me." Today, James is working sixty hours a week on the Jeep Liberty line in Toledo, Ohio. He is thrilled to say that his life right now is "eat, sleep and Jeep." He's back, he said, because Barack Obama gave us a chance for a comeback. 21:00:12 The auto industry supports one of every eight jobs in Ohio, and it's alive and growing in America again. Late last year, Chrysler announced they were hiring eleven hundred new autoworkers in Toledo. Just last month, GM announced a plan to invest 200 million dollars in Lordstown, keeping five thousand jobs in Ohio and building the next generation of the Chevy Cruze-a car we are proud to say is made entirely in Ohio. 21:01:00 And just today the big three auto makers announced that their sales have been up double digits since late last year. It's been a long slog back, and we've still got a long way to go. But all over Ohio-all over America-men and women are going back to work with the pride of building something stamped "Made in America." Before Barack Obama took office, it looked like that pride could have vanished forever, but today, from the staggering depths of the Great Recession, the nation has had 29 straight months of job growth. Workers across my state and across the country are getting back the dignity of a good job and a good salary. 21:02:06 You know, Vince Lombardi was right when he said, "It's not whether you get knocked down, it's whether you get back up." And my friends Ina Sydney, Brian Slagle and James Fayson were all knocked down. But Ina, Brian and James are all standing today. The auto industry is standing today. The middle class is standing today. Ohio is standing today. America is standing strong today. 21:02:47 That's what happens when you have a president who stands up for average working people. President Barack Obama stood up for us, and now by God we will stand up for him. Quite frankly, Barack Obama knows what it's like to pay a mortgage and student loans. He knows what it's like to watch a beloved family member in a medical crisis and worry that treatment is out of reach. Barack Obama knows our struggles. And, my friends, he shares our values. 21:03:36 Now, Mitt Romney, he lives by a different code. To him, American workers are just numbers on a spreadsheet. To him, all profits are created equal, whether made on our shores or off. That's why companies Romney invested in were dubbed "outsourcing pioneers." Our nation was built by pioneers-pioneers who accepted untold risks in pursuit of freedom, not by pioneers seeking offshore profits at the expense of American workers here at home. 21:04:23 Mitt Romney proudly wrote an op-ed entitled, "Let Detroit Go Bankrupt." If he had had his way, devastation would have cascaded from Michigan to Ohio and across the nation. Mitt Romney never saw the point of building something when he could profit by tearing it down. If Mitt was Santa Claus, he'd fire the reindeer and outsource the elves. 21:05:06 Mitt Romney has so little economic patriotism that even his money needs a passport. It summers on the beaches of the Cayman Islands and winters on the slopes of the Swiss Alps. In Matthew, chapter 6, verse 21, the scriptures teach us that where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. My friends, any man who aspires to be our president should keep both his treasure and his heart in the United States of America. And it's well past time for Mitt Romney to come clean with the American people. 21:06:17 On what he's saying about the president's policy for welfare to work, he's lying. Simple as that. On his tax returns, he's hiding. You have to wonder, just what is so embarrassing that he's gone to such great lengths to bury the truth? Whatever he's doing to avoid taxes, can it possibly be worse than the Romney-Ryan tax plan that would have sliced Mitt's total tax rate to less than one percent? 21:07:07 And so, my friends, there is a true choice in this election. Barack Obama is betting on the American worker. Mitt Romney is betting on a Bermuda shell corporation. Barack Obama saved the American auto industry. Mitt Romney saved on his taxes. Barack Obama is an economic patriot. Mitt Romney is an outsourcing pioneer. My friends, the stakes are too high, the differences too stark to sit this one out. Let us stand as one on November 6th and move this country forward by re-electing President Barack Obama. Thank you! KATHLEEN SEBELIUS, HHS Secretary 21;08;30 *Kathleen Sebelius takes the stage* 21;08;40 From 1965 to 1967, my dad, Jack Gilligan, served in Congress and helped pass landmark laws like the Voting Rights Act. Dad later became a great governor of Ohio, but one of his proudest accomplishments was when, as a congressman, he helped draft and pass Medicare. Today, at 91, my father is a happy beneficiary of that effort to bring quality health care to every senior citizen. And President Obama is building upon that legacy by bringing quality and secure health care to every American. 21;09;21 I was governor of Kansas when Mitt Romney was governor of Massachusetts. Many of us watched in amazement-envy, even-as he passed a universal health care law in his state. Well, Republicans may see Romneycare as a scarlet letter. But for us Democrats, Obamacare is a badge of honor. Because no matter who you are, what stage of life you're in, this law is a good thing. First, if you already have insurance you like, you can keep it. Insurance companies can no longer refuse to cover Americans with pre-existing conditions. That's what change looks like. 21;10;08 More than five million seniors have already saved money on their prescription drugs, and almost 33 million have benefited from free preventive services. The president cracked down hard on Medicare and health care fraud, recovering a record-breaking $10.7 billion over the last three years, protecting our seniors. That's what change looks like. The law gives tax credits to 360,000 small businesses so they can give their employees coverage and an array of affordable, private insurance plans to choose from. That's what change looks like. 21;10;49 If you're self-employed, between jobs, or can't get insurance through work, you'll have access to affordable health insurance as good as Congressman Paul Ryan's. That's what change looks like. If you're under 26, you can stay on your parents' plan. You can go back to school or get extra training without fear of a health catastrophe bankrupting your family. Over three million previously uninsured young adults are now on their parents' plans. That's what change looks like. 21;11;27 And under Obamacare, insurance companies can no longer discriminate against women. Before, some wouldn't cover women's most basic needs, like contraception and maternity care, but would still charge us up to 50 percent more than men-for a worse plan. They said women who had C-sections or survived breast cancer or even domestic violence had "pre-existing conditions" and would deny them coverage. But this president made it illegal to discriminate against women and ended the practice of insurance companies charging women higher premiums than men for the same coverage. This president ensured women's free access to preventive services like breast cancer screenings. Being a mother is no longer a liability, and being a woman is no longer a pre-existing condition! That's what change looks like. 21;12;36 Today, nearly 13 million Americans are experiencing something remarkable: Instead of sending checks to their insurance companies, insurance companies are sending checks to them-over a billion dollars this year alone. Because if insurers don't spend at least 80 percent of your premium dollars on your health care, you get a refund. That's what change looks like. 21;13;05 I've spent my career fighting the worst practices of insurance companies. I know how tough it is to stand up to powerful forces that prey on consumers. Governor Romney and Paul Ryan know how tough it is, too. That's why they won't do it! They'll let insurance companies continue to cherry-pick who gets coverage and who gets left out, priced out or locked out of the market. President Obama is making sure that everyone-from cancer survivors to children with asthma-can get the care they need. 21;13;38 What's missing from the Romney-Ryan plan for Medicare is Medicare. Instead of the Medicare guarantee, Republicans would give seniors a voucher that limits what is covered, costing seniors as much as $6,400 more a year. President Obama extended the program's life by eight years while improving seniors' benefits, and strengthened the Medicare guarantee. (The president agrees with you: no vouchers!) 21;14;15 Romney and Ryan will take away women's basic health services and turn a blind eye to insurance discrimination. President Obama stands up for women, giving us control over our own health care. Romney and Ryan would put insurance companies back in control. 21;14;33 Barack Obama was raised by Kansas women, and I know Kansas women. They taught him the values of hard work, responsibility and fairness. That's why President Obama believes that if you work hard and play by the rules, you deserve the security of health care. Governor Romney, Congressman Ryan and their Republican colleagues say it's everyone for themselves. And that, fundamentally, is the choice in this election. Between Republicans who only fight for the favored few or a president who fights for the middle class. Between a nation whose politics play on the worst of our fears and a nation whose laws reflect the best of our values. 21;15;20 Forty-seven years ago, my dad proudly watched President Johnson sign Medicare into law. That day, President Johnson said few people "have the courage to stake reputation and position and the effort of a lifetime upon such a cause when there are so few that share it."President Obama is one of those people. A leader with uncommon compassion and uncommon courage. He has earned more than our gratitude. He has earned four more years! RAHM EMANUEL , Mayor of Chicago 211647 From President Obama's hometown of Chicago, CHEERS it is my honor to speak to you about the president I served. 211740 I want to tell you what I saw up close in the White House while serving our president in a time of crisis, about the values he leans on and the voices he listens to. 212745 When President Obama entered the White House, the economy was in a free-fall. The auto industry: on its back. The banks: frozen up. More than three million Americans had already lost their jobs. And America's bravest, our men and women in uniform, were fighting what would soon be the longest wars in our history. You remember the uncertainty and fear that seized the country. 212815 On that first day, I said, "Mr. President, which crisis do you want to tackle first?" He looked at me, with that look he usually reserved for his chief of staff, "Rahm, we were sent here to tackle all of them, not choose between them." CHEERS 212935 There was no blueprint or how-to manual for fixing a global financial meltdown, an auto crisis, two wars and a great recession, all at the same time. Believe me, if it existed, I would have found it. Each crisis was so deep and so dangerous; any one of them would have defined another presidency. We faced a once-in-a-generation moment in American history. 212909 Fortunately for all of us, we have a once-in-a-generation president. APPLAUSE 212919 And in those uncharted waters, I saw where the president finds his North Star. Every night, President Obama reads ten letters from everyday Americans. 212933 When I met with the president at the end of each day, he made sure he had their letters to read at his residence-letters from people just hoping for someone in power to understand their struggles 212953 I cannot tell you how many times-whether we were discussing the economy, health care, or energy prices- the president would walk to his desk, take out one of their letters, read it to all of us, and say, "This is who we are fighting for"-parents working hard to save for their child's education; middle-class Americans fighting tooth-and-nail to hold onto their jobs, their homes and life savings. APPLAUSE 213014 It is their voices that President Obama brings to the Oval Office. It is their values I saw him fight for every day. And in the first month in office, he fought for the American Recovery Act-to cut taxes for the middle class, to put people to work building America's roads, rails and runways. 213035 And today, our economy has gone from losing 800,000 jobs a month to adding 4.5 million private-sector jobs in the last 29 months. CHEERS 213048 Banks are slowly but surely lending again, and never again will taxpayers foot the bill for Wall Street's excesses. In case we forgot, that was the change we believed in. That was the change we fought for. That was the change President Obama delivered. 213115 President Obama took office knowing full well that for the last century, presidents had tried to reform our health care system. Today, because of President Obama's courage, kids can stay on their parent's plan until they are 26. Insurers cannot kick you off your policy because you have hit your preexisting limit. They will not be able to deny you because you have a pre-existing condition. Because of the president's leadership, every American will have access to affordable, quality health care. That was the change we believed in. That was the change we fought for. That was the change President Obama delivered. 213156 I saw the president make the tough calls in the Situation Room-and today, our troops in Iraq have finally come home so America can do some nation building here at home. That was the change that we believed in. That was the change we fought for. That was the change President Obama delivered. 2131`4 I remember when the president received a report that the auto industry had a few weeks before collapse. We met in the Roosevelt Room late into the night. Some of the president's advisors said that in order to save General Motors, you had to let Chrysler go under. Others said it was throwing good money after bad. Among all the experts, there were only guesses, and nobody put it at better than a one-in-four shot. Only the president suggested going all-in to save the industry and the jobs 213259 Rising above all the voices in Washington, President Obama listened to the voices that mattered to him most-the voices of the auto workers and the communities that depended on them, just like the voices of the steelworkers and communities on the south side of Chicago where he worked earlier in his career. To President Obama, they were not just companies that needed a loan, they were communities that needed a leader to stand up for them. And because President Obama made the right choice, over one million Americans are still working today. The American auto industry is not just surviving. It is thriving. Where Mitt Romney was willing to turn his back on Akron, Dayton and Toledo, Ohio, the president said, "I've got your back." 213210 That was the change we believed in. That was the change we fought for. That was the change President Obama delivered. 213215 And in those first few months, the president worked to put accountability into our children's schools with Race to the Top, so that every child has an education that measures up to their full potential. He was willing to demand change and embrace reform. The president never changed his views to suit the moment or the audience-and that is also a measure of leadership. APPLAUSE 213243 Every challenge was different, every choice was difficult, but every time, the leadership was steady. 213254 Now, one thing I know with absolute certainty, having served two great presidents, is that in the next four years, an unforeseen crisis, challenge or conflict is gonna seize the country. Whose leadership, whose judgment, whose values do you want in the White House when that crisis lands like a thud on the Oval Office desk? 212417 A person who said in four words, "Let Detroit go bankrupt," or a president who had another four words, "Not on my watch"? APPLAUSE 212434 A person who believes in giving tax cuts to the most fortunate, or a president who believes in making college affordable for all Americans? CHEERS 212445 A person who wanted to keep "don't ask, don't tell," or a president who believes that who you love should not keep you from serving the country you love? applause 212503 And believe me, when the fog of uncertainty that surrounds a crisis storms in to the White House, and all the advisors and chiefs of staff have only guesses and hedges to offer, it will be the president's leadership that determines how we as a nation meet the challenges that face the middle class. It is the president's values that shape a future in which the middle class has hope. 212524 The person who takes the oath of office in the next four months will shape not just the next four years, but the next forty years of our nation. In these next four years, we need proven leadership, proven judgment and proven values. America needs four more years of President Barack Obama. Thank you. KAL PENN, Actor and Activist 212620 I am honored To accept your nomination For president Of the United states! Wait, This is not my speech. Prompter guy, Can we pull up My speech? This is awkward. So,While we're waiting: A special message For those of you At home who have recently turned 18.Good news. 212645 I can now legally... Register you to vote. 212654 I've worked on a lot Of fun movies - But my favorite job was having A boss who gave The order to take out bin laden - And who's cool with All of us getting gay-married. 212705 So, Thank you, Invisible man In the chair for that, WILD CHEERING 212722 And , And for giving My friends access To affordable Health insurance And doubling funding for the pell grant. 212730 I started volunteering for Barack Obama In 2007. But nothing Compares to what I saw behind The scenes at the white house - When I had The honor to serve For two years as president obama's liaison to Young americans. 212745 I saw how hard He fights for us. One of the Most special days Was a saturday In 2010. 212753 The senate repealed "don't ask, Don't tell" - So anyone can serve the country they love, Regardless of whom they love. 212800 But that same day, The dream act Was blocked. That bill would give immigrant Children - Who've never Pledged allegiance To any flag But ours - The chance to earn their citizenship. Simple. Important. 212814 I was in a small office on the second floor Of the west wing With eight Other staffers. 213752 We'd worked Our hearts out And cared deeply about what this Would mean for Other young people. 212822 There wasn't a Dry eye in the room. Tears of joy For the history That was made. But also tears Of sadness, Because some american dreams would still be deferred. 212830 and about Five minutes later, President obama walked in, Sleeves rolled up. He said to us, "this is not over. We're gonna keep fighting. I'm gonna keep fighting. I need young people To keep fighting." That's why we're here! CHEERS AND APPLAUSE 212846 A few months later president obama fought to keep taxes from going up on middle class families. Our republican friends said, "sure you can do that" - But - One of the things They were willing To trade is a Little item called The college tax credit, Which today is saving students up to ten thousand dollars over four years of school. 212912 Now, president obama paid off his own student loans not too long ago. He remembers What it is like. He said making it easier to go to college and get technical training is exactly how we grow our economy, create jobs and out-compete The world. So, he stood firm. 212931 And that tuition tax credit is still here. 212838 but here's the thing.. if we don't register, If we don't vote - It won't be. I volunteered in Iowa in 2007 Because like you, I had friends Serving in iraq. Friends who were looking for jobs. Others who couldn't go to the doctor because They couldn't Afford it. I felt that Had to change. 212957 So I knocked On doors. I registered voters. 213004 And I'm volunteering again now because My friend matt Got a job at a Detroit car company That still exists, And lauren can get The prescription she needs. I'm volunteering because josiah Is back from iraq, Chris is finishing college on the G.I. bill, And three weeks ago my buddy Kevin's boyfriend Was able to watch Him graduate from Marine corps training. That's change! WILD APPLAUSE And we can't Turn back now. 213033 So before I close - And as I Wonder which Twitter hashtags You'll start using when I'm done talking - Hashtag sexy face - I ask all you young people to join me. You don't even Have to put Pants on. Go to Commit. Barackobama.com And register right there. And the oldies Out there, You guys can do it, Too. Let's keep fighting For a president Who's never stopped fighting for us! 213059 Go online. Find your local campaign office. Call your friends. Call some strangers. Volunteer. That's how We're going to Win this thing. 213112 I really enjoyed listening to Rahm's speech. But he's a Mayor now, So he can't use four-letter words. But I'm no mayor. So I've got one For you: Vote. CRAIG ROBINSON AND MAYA SOETORO-NG 21;31;52 Maya: Greetings and aloha from the great state of Hawaii! I'm Maya Soetoro-ng, an educator, mother of two and proud to be Barack Obama's little sister. 21;32;12 Craig: I'm Craig Robinson, Michelle Obama's big brother, father of four and head coach of Oregon State University's men's basketball team. Any seven-footers out there, gimme a call! 21;32;29 Maya: Craig and I come from different states, we've had different upbringings and, as you can see, we have different perspectives on things. 21;32;39 Craig: But no matter how different we may seem, we share a set of values our parents gave us-values the same in Chicago as they are in Honolulu: a willingness to work hard, a commitment to education and the responsibility to look out for each other. They're the values at the core of how Barack and Michelle have lived their lives, raised our nieces and led this country as president and first lady of the United States. 21;33;13 Maya: Four years ago at this convention, I spoke with you all about how Barack and I didn't grow up with much in the way of wealth. But we were blessed with a mother who taught us that education is the surest path from limited means to limitless opportunity. She inspired me to become a teacher. And she inspired Barack's deep commitment to giving all our young people the opportunities our education gave us. 21;33;41 He's made sure more of our youngest children have the stable foundation that Head Start provides. He's saved the jobs of teachers in our schools. And he's helped more of our students afford a higher education. Our mother also taught us that everyone has worth, regardless of who they are or what they believe. That's what inspired Barack's vision for a more inclusive and compassionate America, where everyone has a part to play in our shared story. 21;34;18 He's worked to guarantee women equal pay for equal work and the freedom to make our own decisions about our health. He named two brilliant women who understand our lives to the Supreme Court. And he's fought to make sure gay Americans can openly serve the country they love. Making sure everyone in America has a chance to make it like he did-that's what my big brother is all about. And that's what he'll do for four more years! 21;35;03 Craig: Four years ago, I told you how, when she was a young girl, Michelle used to talk to me about which kids at school were having a tough time at home and didn't have anybody to stick up for them. And what inspired her most as she traveled this country on that campaign were the stories of brave Americans who juggle everything at home while their husbands or wives are off at war. 21;35;29 You see, America's military spouses and families make profound sacrifices, too. And Michelle promised that if she had the privilege to serve as first lady, she'd do everything she could to make sure America was there to honor, recognize and support their unique service. I've been so proud to watch her rally Americans to give millions of hours of their time in service to our military families. 21;36;00 She's working with schools that educate military children to add better courses. When Barack challenged businesses to hire 100,000 veterans and military spouses, Michelle and Jill Biden rallied CEOs to the cause. And last month, they stood with CEOs to announce that they've hired 125,000 veterans, surpassing the goal more than a year ahead of schedule. 21;36;35 She's still the kind little sister she always was-now she's just sticking up for those who stand up for us. And I'm proud of her work to give our children a healthier start in life. Let's face it, Maya, I'm going to need the recruits! 21;36;55 Maya: Barack and Michelle have always been there for us. Tonight, we're here for them. And with your help, we can fill the White House with their warmth, compassion and commitment to all our people for four more years! Thank you. LILLY LEDBETTER Good evening, I'm Lilly Ledbetter and I'm here tonight to say: What a difference four years make! 214000 Some of you may know my story: How for nineteen years, I worked as a manager for a tire plant in Alabama. And some of you may have lived a similar story: After nearly two decades of hard, proud work, I found out that I was making significantly less money than the men who were doing the same work as me. I went home, talked to my husband, and we decided to fight. 214029 We decided to fight for our family and to fight for your family too. We sought justice because equal pay for equal work is an American value. That fight took me ten years. 214048 It took me all the way to the Supreme Court. And, in a 5-4 decision, they stood on the side of those who shortchanged my pay, my overtime, and my retirement just because I am a woman. 214102 The Supreme Court told me that I should have filed a complaint within six months of the company's first decision to pay me less even though I didn't know about it for nearly two decades. 214117 And if we hadn't elected President Barack Obama, the Supreme Court's wrongheaded interpretation would have been the law of the land. 214129 nd that would have been the end of the story. But with President Obama on our side, even though I lost before the Supreme Court, we won. cheers 214150 The first bill that President Obama signed into law was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. I think it says something about his priorities that the first bill he put his name on has my name on it too. 214202 As he said that day with me by his side, "Making our economy work means making sure it works for everyone." The president signed the bill for his grandmother, whose dreams hit the glass ceiling, And for his daughters, so that theirs never will. Because of his leadership, women who faced pay discrimination like I did will now get their day in court. 214250 That was the first step but it can't be the last. Because women still earn just 77 cents for every dollar men make. Those pennies add up to real money. It's real money for the little things like being able to take your kids to the movies and for the big things like sending them to college. It's paying your rent this month and paying the mortgage in the future. It's having savings for the bill you didn't expect and savings for the dignified retirement you've earned. 214316 Maybe 23 cents doesn't sound like a lot to someone with a Swiss bank account, CHEERS 214333 Cayman Island Investments and an IRA worth tens of millions of dollars. 214344 But Governor Romney, when we lose 23 cents every hour, every day, every paycheck, every job, over our entire lives, what we lose can't just be measured in dollars. 214404 Three years ago, the house passed the paycheck Fairness Act to level the playing field for America's women. Senate Republicans blocked it. Mitt Romney won't even say if he supports it. President Obama does. In the end, I didn't get a dime of the money I was shortchanged. 214423 But this fight became bigger than Lilly Ledbetter. Today, it's about my daughter. It's about my granddaughter. It's about women and men. CHEERS It's about families. It's about equality and justice. WILD CHEERING 214453 This cause, which bears my name, is bigger than me. It's as big as all of you. which began as my own, is now our fight-a fight for the fundamental American values that make our country great. And with President Barack Obama, we're going to win. Thank you very much. God bless America. DEVAL PATRICK, Gov of Massachusetts 21:45:43 Good evening, Democrats! Are you fired up? Are you ready to go? I hope so. 21:45:54 This is the election of a lifetime; because more than any one candidate or policy, what's at stake is the American dream. That dream-the ability to imagine a better way for ourselves and our families and then reach for it-is central to who we are and what we stand for as a nation. Whether that dream endures for another generation depends on you and me. It also depends on who leads us. 21:46:27 In Massachusetts, we know Mitt Romney. By the time he left office, Massachusetts was 47th in the nation in job creation-during better economic times-and household income in our state was declining. He cut education deeper than anywhere else in America. Roads and bridges were crumbling. Business taxes were up, and business confidence was down. Our clean energy potential was stalled. And we had a structural budget deficit. Mitt Romney talks a lot about all the things he's fixed. I can tell you that Massachusetts wasn't one of them. He's a fine fellow and a great salesman, but as governor he was a lot more interested in having the job than doing the job. 21:47:33 When I came to office, we set out on a different course: investing in ourselves and our future. And today Massachusetts leads the nation in economic competitiveness, student achievement, health care coverage, life sciences and biotech, energy efficiency and veterans' services. Today, with the help of the Obama administration, we are rebuilding our roads and bridges and expanding broadband access. Today we're out of the deficit hole Mr. Romney left, and we've achieved the highest bond rating in our history. Today-with labor at the table-we've made the reforms in our pension and benefits systems, our schools, our transportation system and more that Mr. Romney only talked about. And today in Massachusetts, you can also marry whomever you love. We have much more still to do. But we are on a better track because we placed our faith not in trickle-down fantasies and divisive rhetoric but in our values and common sense. 21:48:53 The same choice faces the nation today. All that today's Republicans are saying is that if we just shrink government, cut taxes, crush unions and wait, all will be well. Never mind that those are the very policies that got us into recession to begin with! Never mind that not one of the governors who preached that gospel in Tampa last week has the results to show for it. But we Democrats owe America more than a strong argument for what we are against. We need to be just as strong about what we are for. 21:49:39 The question is: What do we believe? We believe in an economy that grows opportunity out to the middle class and the marginalized, not just up to the well connected. We believe that freedom means keeping government out of our most private affairs, including out of a woman's decision whether to keep an unwanted pregnancy and everybody's decision about whom to marry. We believe that we owe the next generation a better country than we found and that every American has a stake in that. We believe that in times like these we should turn to each other, not on each other. We believe that government has a role to play, not in solving every problem in everybody's life but in helping people help themselves to the American dream. That's what Democrats believe. That's what Americans believe. 21:50:49If we want to win elections in November and keep our country moving forward, if we want to earn the privilege to lead, it's time for Democrats to stiffen our backbone and stand up for what we believe. Quit waiting for pundits or polls or super PACs to tell us who the next president or senator or congressman is going to be. We're Americans, we shape our own future. Let's start by standing up for President Barack Obama. 21:51:46 This is the president who delivered the security of affordable health care to every single American after 90 years of trying. This is the president who brought Osama bin Laden to justice, who ended the war in Iraq and is ending the war in Afghanistan. This is the president who ended "don't ask, don't tell" so that love of country, not love of another, determines fitness for military service. Who made equal pay for equal work the law of the land. This is the president who saved the American auto industry from extinction, the American financial industry from self-destruction, and the American economy from depression. Who added over 4.5 million private sector jobs in the last two-plus years, more jobs than George W. Bush added in eight. 21:52:56 The list of accomplishments is long, impressive and barely told-even more so when you consider that congressional Republicans have made obstruction itself the centerpiece of their governing strategy. With a record like that and a vision that hopeful and powerful, I will not stand by and let him be bullied out of office-and neither should you, and neither should you and neither should you. 21:53:35 I want you to be real. What's at stake is real. The Orchard Gardens Elementary School in Boston was in trouble. Its record was poor, its spirit was broken, and its reputation was a wreck. No matter how bad things were in other urban schools in the city, people would say, "At least we're not Orchard Gardens." Today, thanks to a host of new tools, many enacted with the help of the Obama administration, Orchard Gardens is turning itself around. Teaching standards and accountabilities are higher. The school day is longer and filled with experiential learning, art, exercise and music. 21:54:23 The head of pediatric psychology from a local hospital comes to consult with faculty and parents on the toughest personal situations in students' home lives. Attendance is up, thanks to a mentoring initiative. In less than a year, Orchard Gardens went from one of the worst schools in the district to one of the best in the state. The whole school community is engaged and proud. 21:54:48 So am I. At the end of my visit a year and a half ago, the first grade-led by a veteran teacher-gathered to recite Dr. King's "I have a dream" speech. When I started to applaud, the teacher said, "not yet, governor." Then she began to ask those six- and seven-year-olds questions: "What does 'creed' mean?" "What does 'nullification' mean?" "Where is Stone Mountain?" And as the hands shot up, I realized that she had taught the children not just to memorize that speech but to understand it. 21:55:28 Today's Republicans and their nominee for president tell us that those first-graders are on their own-on their own to deal with their poverty; with ill-prepared young parents, maybe who speak English as a second language; with an underfunded school; with neighborhood crime and blight; with no access to nutritious food and no place for their mom to cash a paycheck; with a job market that needs skills they don't have; with no way to pay for college. 21:55:58 But those Orchard Gardens kids should not be left on their own. Those children are America's children, too, yours and mine. And among them are the future scientists, entrepreneurs, teachers, artists, engineers, laborers and civic leaders we desperately need. For this country to rise, they must rise-and they and their cause must have a champion in the White House. 21:56:30 That champion is Barack Obama. That cause is the American dream. Let's fight for that. Let's canvass and phone bank and get out the vote for that. Let's go tell everyone we meet that, when the American dream is on the line, you want Barack Obama in charge. 21:56:49 Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States. MARTIN O'MALLEY, Gov of Maryland 21:57:46 Greetings from Maryland, home to the number-one public schools in America for four years in a row! 21:58:12 Since the first days of the American Revolution, Maryland has been called the "Old Line State" because of this true story of a group of soldiers called the Maryland Line: immigrants and native born, black and white, volunteers all. It is August 27th, 1776-two months since our Declaration of Independence. Outnumbered and surrounded, Washington's army is about to be crushed forever at Brooklyn Heights. The British are closing in. 21:58:45 With America's future hanging in the balance, word is passed up and down the Maryland Line: "Fix bayonets, we're moving forward." And they do. Into the breach. They hold off the British just long enough for Washington's army to escape and fight another day. Today there is a plaque by the mass graves of those citizen soldiers. 21:59:13 It reads, "In honor of the Maryland 400, who on this battlefield saved the American army." In times of adversity-for the country we love-Maryland always chooses to move forward. Progress is a choice. Job creation is a choice. Whether we move forward or back: this too is a choice. That is what this election is all about! Democratic governors, with the support of our president, are leading their states forward-putting job creation first, balancing budgets, protecting priorities, making the tough decisions, right now, to create jobs and expand opportunity. Together with President Obama, we are moving America forward, not back. With 29 months in a row of private sector job growth, President Obama is moving America forward, not back! By making college more affordable for millions of middle-class families, President Obama is moving America forward, not back! By securing the guarantee of Medicare for our seniors, President Obama is moving America forward, not back! By putting forward a concrete plan to cut waste, ask those at the top to pay a little more, and reduce our deficit, President Obama is moving America forward, not back! And by adding American manufacturing jobs for the first time since the late 1990s, President Obama is moving America forward, not back! 22:00:30 Facts are facts: No president since Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the Great Depression inherited a worse economy, bigger job losses or deeper problems from his predecessor. But President Obama is moving America forward, not back. . 22:00:50 And yet; Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan now say they want to take America back. And so we ask: Back to what? Back to the failed policies that drove us into a deep recession? Back to the days of record job losses? Back to the days when insurance companies called being a woman a "pre-existing condition"? 22:01:21 No, thank you. I don't want to go back. Do you? Instead of a balanced, achievable plan to create jobs and reduce the deficit, Mitt Romney says he will cut taxes for millionaires and raise them for the middle class. 22:01:41 Instead of improving public safety and public education like President Obama, Mitt Romney says we need less police officers, firefighters and teachers. Instead of safeguarding our seniors, Romney and Ryan would end the guarantee of Medicare and replace it with a voucher in order to give bigger tax breaks to billionaires. Instead of investing in America, they hide their money in Swiss bank accounts and ship our jobs to China! 22:02:17 Swiss bank accounts never built an American bridge. Swiss bank accounts don't put cops on the beat or teachers in our classrooms. Swiss bank accounts never created American jobs! 22:02:34 Governor Romney, just because you bank against the United States of America doesn't mean the rest of us are willing to sell her out. We are Americans. We must act like Americans. We must move forward, not back. My parents, Tom and Barbara O'Malley, like so many of yours, were part of that great generation that won the Second World War. Dad flew 33 missions over Japan in a B-24 Liberator. He was able to go to college only because of the GI Bill. 22:03:19 Our parents taught us to love God, love our family and love our country. Their own grandparents were immigrants. Their first language may not have been English, but the hopes and dreams they had for their children were purely American. 22:03:37 You see, there is a powerful truth at the heart of the American dream: The stronger we make our country, the more she gives back to us, to our children and grandchildren. Our parents and grandparents understood this truth deeply. They believed-as we do-that to create jobs, a modern economy requires modern investments: educating, innovating and rebuilding for our children's future. Building an economy to last, from the middle class up, not from the billionaires down. 22:04:11 Yes, we live in changing times. The question is: What type of change will we make of it? As we search for common ground and the way forward together, let's ask one another-let's ask the leaders in the Republican party-without any anger, meanness or fear: How much less, do you really think, would be good for our country? How much less education would be good for our children? How many hungry American kids can we no longer afford to feed? Governor Romney: How many fewer college degrees would make us more competitive as a nation? 22:04:57 The future we seek is not a future of less opportunity; it is a future of more opportunity for all Americans. 22:05:12 See the faces of your parents, grandparents, great-grandparents. They did not cross an ocean, settle a continent, do hard, backbreaking work so their children and grandchildren could live in a country of less. They came here because the United States of America is the greatest job-generating, opportunity-expanding country ever created by a free people in the history of civilization! And she still is. 22:05:40 Let us not be the first generation of Americans to give our children a country of less! Let us return to the urgent work of creating more jobs, more security and more opportunity for our people. Together, let's move forward, not back-by re-electing Barack Obama president of the United States! God bless you all. JULIAN CASTRO, Mayor of San Antonio 22:08:45 My fellow Democrats, my fellow Americans, my fellow Texans: I stand before you tonight as a young American, a proud American, of a generation born as the Cold War receded, shaped by the tragedy of 9/11, connected by the digital revolution and determined to re-elect the man who will make the 21st century another American century-President Barack Obama. 22:09:26 The unlikely journey that brought me here tonight began many miles from this podium. My brother Joaquin and I grew up with my mother Rosie and my grandmother Victoria. My grandmother was an orphan. As a young girl, she had to leave her home in Mexico and move to San Antonio, where some relatives had agreed to take her in. She never made it past the fourth grade. She had to drop out and start working to help her family. My grandmother spent her whole life working as a maid, a cook and a babysitter, barely scraping by, but still working hard to give my mother, her only child, a chance in life, so that my mother could give my brother and me an even better one. 22:10:12 As my grandmother got older, she begged my mother to give her grandchildren. She prayed to God for just one grandbaby before she died. You can imagine her excitement when she found out her prayers would be answered-twice over. She was so excited that the day before Joaquin and I were born she entered a menudo cook-off, and she won $300! That's how she paid our hospital bill. 22:10:42 By the time my brother and I came along, this incredible woman had taught herself to read and write in both Spanish and English. I can still see her in the room that Joaquin and I shared with her, reading her Agatha Christie novels late into the night. And I can still remember her, every morning as Joaquin and I walked out the door to school, making the sign of the cross behind us, saying, "Que dios los bendiga." "May God bless you." 22:11:12 My grandmother didn't live to see us begin our lives in public service. But she probably would have thought it extraordinary that just two generations after she arrived in San Antonio, one grandson would be the mayor and the other would be on his way-the good people of San Antonio willing-to the United States Congress. 22:11:43 My family's story isn't special. What's special is the America that makes our story possible. Ours is a nation like no other, a place where great journeys can be made in a single generation. No matter who you are or where you come from, the path is always forward. 22:12:06 America didn't become the land of opportunity by accident. My grandmother's generation and generations before always saw beyond the horizons of their own lives and their own circumstances. They believed that opportunity created today would lead to prosperity tomorrow. That's the country they envisioned, and that's the country they helped build. The roads and bridges they built, the schools and universities they created, the rights they fought for and won-these opened the doors to a decent job, a secure retirement, the chance for your children to do better than you did. 22:12:47 And that's the middle class-the engine of our economic growth. With hard work, everybody ought to be able to get there. And with hard work, everybody ought to be able to stay there-and go beyond. The dream of raising a family in a place where hard work is rewarded is not unique to Americans. It's a human dream, one that calls across oceans and borders. The dream is universal, but America makes it possible. And our investment in opportunity makes it a reality. 22:13:34 Now, in Texas, we believe in the rugged individual. Texas may be the one place where people actually still have bootstraps, and we expect folks to pull themselves up by them. But we also recognize there are some things we can't do alone. We have to come together and invest in opportunity today for prosperity tomorrow. 22:14:13 And it starts with education. Twenty years ago, Joaquin and I left home for college and then for law school. In those classrooms, we met some of the brightest folks in the world. But at the end of our days there, I couldn't help but to think back to my classmates at Thomas Jefferson High School in San Antonio. They had the same talent, the same brains, the same dreams as the folks we sat with at Stanford and Harvard. I realized the difference wasn't one of intelligence or drive. The difference was opportunity. 22:14:55 In my city of San Antonio, we get that. So we're working to ensure that more four-year-olds have access to pre-K. We opened Cafe College, where students get help with everything from test prep to financial aid paperwork. We know that you can't be pro-business unless you're pro-education. We know that pre-K and student loans aren't charity. They're a smart investment in a workforce that can fill and create the jobs of tomorrow. We're investing in our young minds today to be competitive in the global economy tomorrow. 22:15:42 And it's paying off. Last year the Milken Institute ranked San Antonio as the nation's top performing local economy. And we're only getting started. Opportunity today, prosperity tomorrow. 22:16:04 Now, like many of you, I watched last week's Republican convention. They told a few stories of individual success. We all celebrate individual success. But the question is, how do we multiply that success? The answer is President Barack Obama. 22:16:36 Mitt Romney, quite simply, doesn't get it. A few months ago he visited a university in Ohio and gave the students there a little entrepreneurial advice. "Start a business," he said. But how? "Borrow money if you have to from your parents," he told them. Gee, why didn't I think of that? Some people are lucky enough to borrow money from their parents, but that shouldn't determine whether you can pursue your dreams. Not here, not in America, not in the 21st century. I don't think Governor Romney meant any harm. I think he's a good guy. He just has no idea how good he's had it. 22:17:34 We know that in our free market economy some will prosper more than others. What we don't accept is the idea that some folks won't even get a chance. And the thing is, Mitt Romney and the Republican Party are perfectly comfortable with that America. In fact, that's exactly what they're promising us. 22:17:57 The Romney-Ryan budget doesn't just cut public education, cut Medicare, cut transportation and cut job training. 22:18:04 t doesn't just pummel the middle class-it dismantles it. It dismantles what generations before have built to ensure that everybody can enter and stay in the middle class. When it comes to getting the middle class back to work, Mitt Romney says, "No." When it comes to respecting women's rights, Mitt Romney says, "No." When it comes to letting people love who they want to love and marry whomever they want to marry, Mitt Romney says, "No." When it comes to expanding access to good health care, Mitt Romney says, "No." 22:18:40 Actually, Mitt Romney said, "Yes," and now he says, "No." Governor Romney has undergone an extreme makeover, and it ain't pretty. So here's what we're going to say to Mitt Romney in November. We're going to say, "No." 22:19:20 Of all the fictions we heard last week in Tampa, the one I find most troubling is this: If we all just go our own way, our nation will be stronger for it; because if we sever the threads that connect us, the only people who will go far are those who are already ahead. We all understand that freedom isn't free. What Romney and Ryan don't understand is that neither is opportunity. We have to invest in it. 22:19:54 Republicans tell us that if the most prosperous among us do even better, that somehow the rest of us will too. Folks, we've heard that before. First they called it "trickle-down." Then "supply-side." Now it's "Romney-Ryan." Or is it "Ryan-Romney"? Either way, their theory has been tested. It failed. Our economy failed. The middle class paid the price. Your family paid the price. 22:20:26 Mitt Romney just doesn't get it. But Barack Obama gets it. He understands that when we invest in people we're investing in our shared prosperity. And when we neglect that responsibility, we risk our promise as a nation. Just a few years ago, families that had never asked for anything found themselves at risk of losing everything. And the dream my grandmother held, that work would be rewarded, that the middle class would be there, if not for her, then for her children-that dream was being crushed. 22:21:13 But then President Obama took office-and he took action. When Detroit was in trouble, President Obama saved the auto industry and saved a million jobs. Seven presidents before him-Democrats and Republicans-tried to expand health care to all Americans. President Obama got it done. He made a historic investment to lift our nation's public schools and expanded Pell grants so that more young people can afford college. And because he knows that we don't have an ounce of talent to waste, the president took action to lift the shadow of deportation from a generation of young, law-abiding immigrants called dreamers. 22:22:10 Barack Obama believes in you. Now it's time for Congress to enshrine in law their right to pursue their dreams in the only place they've ever called home: America. 22:22:25 Four years ago, America stood on the brink of a depression. Despite incredible odds and united Republican opposition, our president took action, and now we've seen 4.5 million new jobs. He knows better than anyone that there's more hard work to do, but we're making progress. And now we need to make a choice. 22:22:45 It's a choice between a country where the middle class pays more so that millionaires can pay less-or a country where everybody pays their fair share, so we can reduce the deficit and create the jobs of the future. It's a choice between a nation that slashes funding for our schools and guts Pell grants-or a nation that invests more in education. It's a choice between a politician who rewards companies that ship American jobs overseas-or a leader who brings jobs back home. 22:23:26 This is the choice before us. And to me, to my generation and for all the generations to come, our choice is clear. Our choice is a man who's always chosen us. A man who already is our president: Barack Obama. 22:24:08 In the end, the American dream is not a sprint, or even a marathon, but a relay. Our families don't always cross the finish line in the span of one generation. But each generation passes on to the next the fruits of their labor. My grandmother never owned a house. She cleaned other people's houses so she could afford to rent her own. But she saw her daughter become the first in her family to graduate from college. And my mother fought hard for civil rights so that instead of a mop, I could hold this microphone. 22:24:57 And while she may be proud of me tonight, I've got to tell you, Mom, I'm even more proud of you. Thank you, Mom. Today, my beautiful wife Erica and I are the proud parents of a three-year-old little girl, Carina Victoria, named after my grandmother. 22:25:45 A couple of Mondays ago was her first day of pre-K. As we dropped her off, we walked out of the classroom, and I found myself whispering to her, as was once whispered to me, "Que dios te bendiga." "May God bless you." She's still young, and her dreams are far off yet, but I hope she'll reach them. As a dad, I'm going to do my part, and I know she'll do hers. But our responsibility as a nation is to come together and do our part, as one community, one United States of America, to ensure opportunity for all of our children. 22:26:36 The days we live in are not easy ones, but we have seen days like this before, and America prevailed. With the wisdom of our founders and the values of our families, America prevailed. With each generation going further than the last, America prevailed. And with the opportunity we build today for a shared prosperity tomorrow, America will prevail. 22:26:59 It begins with re-electing Barack Obama. It begins with you. It begins now. Que dios los bendiga. May God bless you, and may God bless the United States of America. Thank you. Thank you. ELAINE BRYE, Military Mom 22;35;40 *Elaine Brye takes the stage* 22;35;57 Wow! What's a mom like me doing in a place like this? I'm not even a political person. But what I am is a military mom. My husband and I are so proud of our five kids. One each in the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, and the Marines. Our youngest is still in high school, and yes-we're hoping he'll join the Coast Guard. They are a mom's most precious treasures. 22;36;46 I don't know when I'm going to get them all together again because one of them is always deploying. But because of Dr. Biden and the first lady, our lives are a little bit easier. Along with President Obama, they have made helping military families a top priority. They've brought together the American people, including thousands of businesses, to become part of a nationwide support network. It is honor and respect in action and it warms this mother's heart. 22;37;32 Last December I wrote Michelle Obama a Christmas card, just a mom-to-mom note to say thank you for caring. The first lady not only read my letter-she invited my husband and I to the White House. It was an amazing experience. But what's even more amazing is knowing that our commander in chief and first lady are thinking about families like mine every single day. 22;38;03 So like I said, I'm not a political person. But I'm a mom, and if someone is there for my family and families like mine, then I'll be there for them. That's why I'm proud to introduce my fellow mom and our first lady, Michelle Obama MICHELLE OBAMA, First Lady 223851 Michelle comes out to "Signed , Sealed, Delivered, I'm yours.. 223921 WILD CHEERING FROM CROWD 213931 Thank you , thank you so much. Michelle waves to crowd 223951 CHANTS OF 4 more years.Michelle: with your help, with your help. 224009 Let me start.Thank you so much, Elaine.we are so grateful for your family's service and sacrifice.and we will always have your back. 224026 Over the past few years as First Lady, I have had the extraordinary privilege of traveling all across this country. And everywhere I've gone, in the people I've met, and the stories I've heard, I have seen the very best of the American spirit. I have seen it in the incredible kindness and warmth that people have shown me and my family, especially our girls. I've seen it in teachers in a near-bankrupt school district who vowed to keep teaching without pay. 224059 I've seen it in people who become heroes at a moment's notice, diving into harm's way to save others.flying across the country to put out a fire.driving for hours to bail out a flooded town. 224110And I've seen it in our men and women in uniform and our proud military families.CHEERS in wounded warriors who tell me they're not just going to walk again, they're going to run, and they're going to run marathons. 224141 in the young man blinded by a bomb in Afghanistan who said, simply, ".I'd give my eyes 100 times again to have the chance to do what I have done and what I can still do." 224115 Every day, the people I meet inspire me.every day, they make me proud.every day they remind me how blessed we are to live in the greatest nation on earth. 224200Serving as your First Lady is an honor and a privilege.but back when we first came together four years ago, I still had some concerns about this journey we'd begun. 224210 While I believed deeply in my husband's vision for this country.and I was certain he would make an extraordinary President.like any mother, I was worried about what it would mean for our girls if he got that chance. 224228 How would we keep them grounded under the glare of the national spotlight? 224233How would they feel being uprooted from their school, their friends, and the only home they'd ever known? 224239 See, Our life before moving to Washington was filled with simple joys.Saturdays at soccer games, Sundays at grandma's house.and a date night for Barack and me was either dinner or a movie, because as an exhausted mom, I couldn't stay awake for both. laughter 224307And the truth is, I loved the life we had built for our girls.I deeply loved the man I had built that life with.and I didn't want that to change if he became President. CHEERS 224317I loved Barack just the way he was. 224321 You see, even though back then Barack was a Senator and a presidential candidate.to me, he was still the guy who'd picked me up for our dates in a car that was so rusted out, I could actually see the pavement going by in a hole in the passenger side door.he was the guy whose proudest possession was a coffee table he'd found in a dumpster, laughter and whose only pair of decent shoes was half a size too small. 224357 But see when Barack started telling me about his family - that's when I knew I had found a kindred spirit, someone whose values and upbringing were so much like mine. 224410 You see, Barack and I were both raised by families who didn't have much in the way of money or material possessions but who had given us something far more valuable - their unconditional love, their unflinching sacrifice, and the chance to go places they had never imagined for themselves. APPLAUSE My father was a pump operator at the city water plant, and he was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis when my brother and I were young. 224437 And even as a kid, I knew there were plenty of days when he was in pain.I knew there were plenty of mornings when it was a struggle for him to simply get out of bed. 224449 But every morning, I watched my father wake up with a smile, grab his walker, prop himself up against the bathroom sink, and slowly shave and button his uniform. 224500 And when he returned home after a long day's work, my brother and I would stand at the top of the stairs of our little apartment, patiently waiting to greet him.watching as he reached down to lift one leg, and then the other, to slowly climb his way into our arms. 224523 But despite these challenges, my dad hardly ever missed a day of work.he and my mom were determined to give me and my brother the kind of education they could only dream of. 224534 And when my brother and I finally made it to college, nearly all of our tuition came from student loans and grants. 224507 But my dad still had to pay a tiny portion of that tuition himself. And every semester, he was determined to pay that bill right on time, even taking out loans when he fell short. 224556 He was so proud to be sending his kids to college.and he made sure we never missed a registration deadline because his check was late. 224607 You see, for my dad, that's what it meant to be a man. CHEERS Like so many of us, that was the measure of his success in life - being able to earn a decent living that allowed him to support his family. And as I got to know Barack, I realized that even though he'd grown up all the way across the country, he'd been brought up just like me. 224641 Barack was raised by a single mother who struggled to pay the bills, and by grandparents who stepped in when she needed help. 224647 Barack's grandmother started out as a secretary at a community bank.and she moved quickly up the ranks.but like so many women, she hit a glass ceiling. 224657 And for years, men no more qualified than she was - men she had actually trained - were promoted up the ladder ahead of her, earning more and more money while Barack's family continued to scrape by. But day after day, she kept on waking up at dawn to catch the bus.arriving at work before anyone else.giving her best without complaint or regret. 224723 And she would often tell Barack, "So long as you kids do well, Bar, that's all that really matters." 224730 Like so many American families, our families weren't asking for much. 224737 They didn't begrudge anyone else's success or care that others had much more than they did...in fact, they admired it. APPLAUSE 224750 They simply believed in that fundamental American promise that, even if you don't start out with much, if you work hard and do what you're supposed to do, then you should be able to build a decent life for yourself and an even better life for your kids and grandkids. APPLAUSE 224813 That's how they raised us.that's what we learned from their example. 224818 We learned about dignity and decency - that how hard you work matters more than how much you make.that helping others means more than just getting ahead yourself. 224830 We learned about honesty and integrity - that the truth matters.that you don't take shortcuts or play by your own set of rules.and success doesn't count unless you earn it fair and square. LOUD APPLAUSE 224856 We learned about gratitude and humility - that so many people had a hand in our success, from the teachers who inspired us to the janitors who kept our school clean.and we were taught to value everyone's contribution and treat everyone with respect. 224908 Those are the values Barack and I - and so many of you - are trying to pass on to our own children. 224914 That's who we are. 224923 And standing before you four years ago, I knew that I didn't want any of that to change if Barack became President. 224930 Well, today, after so many struggles and triumphs and moments that have tested my husband in ways I never could have imagined, I have seen firsthand that being president doesn't change who you are - , No, it reveals who you are. LOUD APPLAUSE AND CROWD STANDS 225000You see, I've gotten to see up close and personal what being president really looks like. 225006 And I've seen how the issues that come across a President's desk are always the hard ones - the problems where no amount of data or numbers will get you to the right answer.the judgment calls where the stakes are so high, and there is no margin for error. 225021And as President, you can get all kinds of advice from all kinds of people. 225025 But at the end of the day, when it comes time to make that decision, as President, all you have to guide you are your values, and your vision, and the life experiences that make you who you are. applause 225047 So when it comes to rebuilding our economy, Barack is thinking about folks like my dad and like his grandmother. 225055 He's thinking about the pride that comes from a hard day's work. 225059 That's why he signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act to help women get equal pay for equal work. cheers 225112 That's why he cut taxes for working families and small businesses and fought to get the auto industry back on its feet. cheers 225123 That's how he brought our economy from the brink of collapse to creating jobs again - jobs you can raise a family on, good jobs right here in the United States of America. 225135 When it comes to the health of our families, Barack refused to listen to all those folks who told him to leave health reform for another day, another president. 225146 He didn't care whether it was the easy thing to do politically - that's not how he was raised - he cared that it was the right thing to do. APPLAUSE 225206 He did it because he believes that here in America, our grandparents should be able to afford their medicine.our kids should be able to see a doctor when they're sick.and no one in this country should ever go broke because of an accident or illness. applause 225231 And he believes that women are more than capable of making our own choices about our bodies and our health care.that's what my husband stands for. Loud applause, Jill Biden stands up and applauds 225259 When it comes to giving our kids the education they deserve, Barack knows that like me and like so many of you, he never could've attended college without financial aid. 225312And believe it or not, when we were first married, our combined monthly student loan bills were actually higher than our mortgage. 225322 We were so young, so in love, and so in debt. That's why Barack has fought so hard to increase student aid and keep interest rates down, because he wants every young person to fulfill their promise and be able to attend college without a mountain of debt. APPLAUSE 225336 So in the end, for Barack, these issues aren't political - they're personal. 225340 Because Barack knows what it means when a family struggles. He knows what it means to want something more for your kids and grandkids. 225340 Barack knows the American Dream because he's lived it cheers.and he wants everyone in this country to have that same opportunity, no matter who we are, or where we're from, or what we look like, or who we love. 225416 And he believes that when you've worked hard, and done well, and walked through that doorway of opportunity.you do not slam it shut behind you.you reach back, and you give other folks the same chances that helped you succeed. WILD APPLAUSE AND STANDING OVATION AND CHEERING 225441 So when people ask me whether being in the White House has changed my husband, I can honestly say that when it comes to his character, and his convictions, and his heart, Barack Obama is still the same man I fell in love with all those years ago. 225507 He's the same man who started his career by turning down high paying jobs and instead working in struggling neighborhoods where a steel plant had shut down, fighting to rebuild those communities and get folks back to work.because for Barack, success isn't about how much money you make, it's about the difference you make in people's lives. WILD APPLAUSE AND CHEERS 225543 He's the same man, when our girls were first born, would anxiously check their cribs every few minutes to ensure they were still breathing, proudly showing them off to everyone we knew. 225602 That's the man who sits down with me and our girls for dinner nearly every night, patiently answering their questions about issues in the news, and strategizing about middle school friendships. laughter 225624 That's the man I see in those quiet moments late at night, hunched over his desk, poring over the letters people have sent him. 225630 The letter from the father struggling to pay his bills.from the woman dying of cancer whose insurance company won't cover her care.from the young person with so much promise but so few opportunities. Person in audience yells" I love you Michelle" 225642 I see the concern in his eyes...and I hear the determination in his voice as he tells me, "You won't believe what these folks are going through, Michelle.it's not right. We've got to keep working to fix this. We've got so much more to do." APPLAUSE CHANTS OF 4 MORE YEARS, 4 MORE YEARS! 225727 I see how those stories - our collection of struggles and hopes and dreams - I see how that's what drives Barack Obama every single day. And I didn't think it was possible, but today, I love my husband even more than I did four years ago.even more than I did 23 years ago, when we first met. I love that he's never forgotten how he started. I love that we can trust Barack to do what he says he's going to do, even when it's hard - especially when it's hard. I love that for Barack, there is no such thing as "us" and "them" - he doesn't care whether you're a Democrat, a Republican, or none of the above.he knows that we all love our country.and he's always ready to listen to good ideas.he's always looking for the very best in everyone he meets. And I love that even in the toughest moments, when we're all sweating it - when we're worried that the bill won't pass, and it seems like all is lost - Barack never lets himself get distracted by the chatter and the noise. 225853 Just like his grandmother, he just keeps getting up and moving forward.with patience and wisdom, and courage and grace. 225911 And he reminds me that we are playing a long game here.and that change is hard, and change is slow, and it never happens all at once. 225921 But eventually we get there, we always do. 225926 We get there because of folks like my Dad.folks like Barack's grandmother.men and women who said to themselves, "I may not have a chance to fulfill my dreams, but maybe my children will.maybe my grandchildren will." 226944 So many of us stand here tonight because of their sacrifice, and longing, and steadfast love.because time and again, they swallowed their fears and doubts and did what was hard. 225956 So today, when the challenges we face start to seem overwhelming - or even impossible - let us never forget that doing the impossible is the history of this nation.it's who we are as Americans.it's how this country was built. WILD APPLAUSE AND CHEERING 230028 And if our parents and grandparents could toil and struggle for us.if they could raise beams of steel to the sky, send a man to the moon, and connect the world with the touch of a button.then surely we can keep on sacrificing and building for our own kids and grandkids, right? 230058 And if so many brave men and women could wear our country's uniform and sacrifice their lives for our most fundamental rights.then surely we can do our part as citizens of this great democracy to exercise those rights.surely, we can get to the polls and make our voices heard on Election Day. APPLAUSE AND CHEERS 230126 If farmers and blacksmiths could win independence from an empire.if immigrants could leave behind everything they knew for a better life on our shores.if women could be dragged to jail for seeking the vote.if a generation could defeat a depression, and define greatness for all time.if a young preacher could lift us to the mountaintop with his righteous dream.cheers 230156 and if proud Americans can be who they are and boldly stand at the altar with who they love.then surely, surely we can give everyone in this country a fair chance at that great American Dream. CHEERS! AND APPLAUSE AND CHANTS OF YES WE CAN 230231 Because in the end, more than anything else, that is the story of this country - the story of unwavering hope grounded in unyielding struggle.
Archived Unity File
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