The Democratic National Convention kicked off in Charlotte last night, leaving many to wonder if it could top last week’s Republican National Convention in Tampa. While there weren’t women dressed as female reproductive organs protesting or Clint Eastwood speaking to “invisible Obama,” we think it’s safe to say that the 2012 DNC will be memorable, although not for (unintentionally) hilarious reasons. Night one of the DNC was a great one for women. The convention kicked off with First Lady Michelle Obama’s speech which has been described by many pundits as passionate, history changing and dominating. Mrs. Obama spoke from the heart, reminding the conventioneers and audience at home that “Success isn’t about how much money you make, it’s about the difference you make in people’s lives” and “when you walk through that door of opportunity you don’t slam it shut behind you.” She was able to keep the audience riveted for almost half-an-hour, which is a feat given the attention span of most people these days.
The inspirational speeches continued, with U.S. House Candidate & war hero Tammy Duckworth telling her emotional tale of growing up in a military family, as well as her own experiences in the Iraq war. “Almost a year into my tour I was wounded, and recovered at Walter Reed with other wounded warriors. Some of us had obvious injuries. Others had scars on the inside that were less visible, but no less real. At the hospital, I realized my new responsibility: to honor the buddies who saved me by serving our military men and women. I became director of the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs. We led the nation in screening for traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress, and we created a tax credit for Illinois businesses that hire veterans.” She also went on endorse President Obama, stating “When it comes to our men and women in harm’s way, we have a clear choice on November 6th. Last week, Mitt Romney had a chance to show his support for the brave men and women he is seeking to command. But he chose to criticize President Obama instead of even uttering the word ‘Afghanistan.’ Barack Obama will never ignore our troops. He will fight for them. That’s why he is my choice on November 6th. My choice is to do what my family did when times were hard: roll up our sleeves and get to work. My choice is to do what my crew did for me in a dusty field in Iraq.”
There was also an awesome speech by Lilly Ledbetter, for whom the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act (the first law President Obama signed) is named for. She used her time to point out to Gov. Romney that “Maybe 23 cents doesn’t sound like a lot to someone with a Swiss bank account and a Cayman Island investment and an IRA worth tens of millions of dollars. But Gov. Romney, when we lose 23 cents every hour every day every month,” she said, “it cannot just be measured in dollars.” She also went on to praised President Obama. “With President Obama on our side, even though I lost before the Supreme Court, we won. The first bill that President Obama signed into law was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. I think that it says something about his priorities that the first bill he put into effect has my name on it, too.”
These great speeches were just on the first night–what do you think will happen the rest of the convention? Do you have a favorite speech from night one?