Trunkline 2012: Tuesday’s Tidbits from the Campaign Trail – 10/9/12

Bookmark and Share   Today’s tidbits from the trail include news about Romney’s rise in the polls,  Obama’s supporters threaten to riot, the DNC ‘s cash shortage, the President’s obsession with Big Bird, Obama’s initial belief that he won the first presidential debate, his lies about Romney and his own record, the president’s declining support among African-Americans, 10 dates from Obama’s first term to remember, the continued fallout from the Libyan terrorist attack and more:

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Trunkline 2012: Monday’s Mentionables from the Presidential Race – 10/8/12

Bookmark and Share  The events shaping this day on the campaign trail in Trunkline 2012 includes stories about President Obama’s unfolding credit card fundraising scandal, new positive polling for Mitt Romney, Mitt Romney’s incredible foreign policy speech at the Virginia Military Institute, the cable from Libya that detailed the threats to our consulate, an explosion of death threats against Romney on Twitter, the dispelling of liberal myths, continued fallout from Obama’s horrible debate performance and more interesting political snippets and tidbits.

  • Obama campaign’s foreign fundraising scandal reveals the illegality of tens of millions of small dollar donations to the Obama reelection effort
  • Romney’s proves to be more presidential than ever as he outlines an inspirational foreign policy vision for the nation in a speech at the Virginia Military institute
  • New White House 2012 Projection Has Romney Winning By 24 Electoral Votes
  • Dems less enthusiastic about Obama as poll shows that among those who are extremely likely to vote, Romney actually leads Obama 52 percent to 46 percent
  • Pew Poll Shows Romney Up By 4 Points
  • Libya Cable Detailed Threats
  • Debunking the liberal myth that Republicans want to return to the same practices that got us into this mess
  • Why Obama Will Lose All Three Debates
  • Twitter exploded with assassination threats against Mitt Romney
  • Continued fallout from President Obama’s disastrous debate performance
  • Just How Stupid Does The Obama Team Think We Are?

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Paul Ryan Delivered a Speech That Made Him the Leader of a Generation and Put Democrats on a Losing Playing Field

   Bookmark and Share  “Without a change in leadership, why would the next four years be any different  from the last four years?”

That was just one of the many compelling arguments put forward by Congressman Paul Ryan as he delivered his vice presidential  nomination acceptance speech speech.  His rousing words presented voters with a clear choice between two diametrically opposed paths and visions for America. (See full text and complete video of the speech at the bottom of this post)

Ryan’s speech was a superb summation of the facts that was laid out in sharp but harmonious terms, and laced with good natured humor and dripping with a sense of sincerity and conviction that few contemporary politicians have the ability to convey when discussing politics.  His speech not only drove home a convincing and inspirational case for the Romney-Ryan vision for America, it also established an election agenda for voters that put Democrats on a losing playing field.

Paul Ryan began by proudly grabbing my generations mantle of leadership.  He became the first individual to define the purpose and mission of my generation, a generation that must prepare to care for the baby boomers and greatest generation before them and at the same time be sure to leave the generation to follow us with a nation that is as good or better than the America that the generations before handed over to us. Its a cause which has needed attention but which our current President and his policies of bankruptcy have failed to properly consider.  Last night, Paul Ryan not only prepared his generation for that mission, he became its leader.

 “I accept the duty to help lead our nation out of a jobs crisis and back to prosperity – and I know we can do this.  I accept the calling of my generation to give our children the America that was given to us, with opportunity for the young and security for the old – and I know that we are ready.” said Ryan.

Ryan’s message was strategically brilliant.  In addition to his smooth and genuine delivery, his eloquent and  forceful words formed a case for Republicans and against Democrats that was a harmonious mix of the factual failures of the Obama agenda and the fundamental truths of the Republican vision for our nation.  It left listeners with a compelling case for Republicans while simultaneously offering a scathing yet undeniably honest indictment of the President’s  policies.  And Paul Ryan did so in a way that lacked the malice and anger that often turns off an American electorate sick of the bitter and harsh rhetoric of today’s politic al discourse. In his speech Paul Ryan not only laid out a mission and responsibility for an entire American generation and a principled path for all Americans to travel down together as one nation, he also inoculated Republicans from the desperate and pathetic liberal class warfare strategy they are interjecting into this election.   After spending hundreds of millions of dollars trying to define Mitt Romney as inherently evil because of his self-made successes in life, Ryan reminded of us the American dream and how up till now, that dream never resented success.  Ryan turned the the tables on Democrats by subtle demonstrating how contrary the Obama Administration’s campaign against success is to American life  and how success is a good thing that needs to be appreciated and held up as an example, not resented and looked down upon as a form of greed.  According to Ryan;

Mitt has not only succeeded, but succeeded where others could not.  He turned around the Olympics at a time when a great institution was collapsing under the weight of bad management, overspending, and corruption – sounds familiar, doesn’t it?

One of the most powerful sections of Ryan’s speech came when he offered voters an assessment of the Obama Administration that encapsulated the contradictions between the ideological approach to government of President Obama, and the inherently American principles that have guided our nation to greatness.  It was a section of his speech that also captured the essence of liberal elitism which tends to believe that government knows better than the people.  It also hammered home the point that this election is a referendum on the reality that President Obama has created and that Election Day is day of reckoning which should hold President Obama and his Parry accountable for their record.  As Ryan put it;

“None of us have to settle for the best this administration offers – a dull, adventureless journey from one entitlement to the next, a government-planned life, a country where everything is free but us.

Listen to the way we’re spoken to already, as if everyone is stuck in some class or station in life, victims of circumstances beyond our control, with government there to help us cope with our fate.

It’s the exact opposite of everything I learned growing up in Wisconsin, or at college in Ohio. When I was waiting tables, washing dishes, or mowing lawns for money, I never thought of myself as stuck in some station in life. I was on my own path, my own journey, an American journey where I could think for myself, decide for myself, define happiness for myself. That’s what we do in this country. That’s the American Dream. That’s freedom, and I’ll take it any day over the supervision and sanctimony of the central planners.

By themselves, the failures of one administration are not a mandate for a new administration. A challenger must stand on his own merits. He must be ready and worthy to serve in the office of president.

In the final analysis, last night, Paul Ryan introduced himself to the nation in a way that gave voters confidence in his knowledge of the issues, understanding of our problems, and his ability to lead along side of Mitt Romney.  Strategically his speech also served as a direct appeal to the independent voters who will determine who wins this election.  Ryan’s remarks failed to paint the picture of the woman hating, radical leader of conservative extremism that the left is trying to portray him as.

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Full Text of Paul Ryan’s Speech

Congressman Paul Ryan

Republican National Convention

August 29, 2012

Mr. Chairman, delegates, and fellow citizens: I am honored by the support of this convention for vice president of the United States.

I accept the duty to help lead our nation out of a jobs crisis and back to prosperity – and I know we can do this.

I accept the calling of my generation to give our children the America that was given to us, with opportunity for the young and security for the old – and I know that we are ready.

Our nominee is sure ready. His whole life has prepared him for this moment – to meet serious challenges in a serious way, without excuses and idle words.  After four years of getting the run-around, America needs a turnaround, and the man for the job is Governor Mitt Romney.

I’m the newcomer to the campaign, so let me share a first impression.  I have never seen opponents so silent about their record, and so desperate to keep their power.

They’ve run out of ideas.  Their moment came and went. Fear and division are all they’ve got left.

With all their attack ads, the president is just throwing away money – and he’s pretty experienced at that.  You see, some people can’t be dragged down by the usual cheap tactics, because their ability, character, and plain decency are so obvious – and ladies and gentlemen, that is Mitt Romney.

For my part, your nomination is an unexpected turn.  It certainly came as news to my family, and I’d like you to meet them: My wife Janna, our daughter Liza, and our boys Charlie and Sam.

The kids are happy to see their grandma, who lives in Florida.  There she is – my Mom, Betty.

My Dad, a small-town lawyer, was also named Paul.  Until we lost him when I was 16, he was a gentle presence in my life.  I like to think he’d be proud of me and my sister and brothers, because I’m sure proud of him and of where I come from, Janesville, Wisconsin.

I live on the same block where I grew up.  We belong to the same parish where I was baptized.  Janesville is that kind of place.

The people of Wisconsin have been good to me.  I’ve tried to live up to their trust.  And now I ask those hardworking men and women, and millions like them across America, to join our cause and get this country working again.

When Governor Romney asked me to join the ticket, I said, “Let’s get this done” – and that is exactly, what we’re going to do.

President Barack Obama came to office during an economic crisis, as he has reminded us a time or two.  Those were very tough days, and any fair measure of his record has to take that into account.  My home state voted for President Obama. When he talked about change, many people liked the sound of it, especially in Janesville, where we were about to lose a major factory.

A lot of guys I went to high school with worked at that GM plant. Right there at that plant, candidate Obama said: “I believe that if our government is there to support you … this plant will be here for another hundred years.”  That’s what he said in 2008.

Well, as it turned out, that plant didn’t last another year.  It is locked up and empty to this day.  And that’s how it is in so many towns today, where the recovery that was promised is nowhere in sight.

Right now, 23 million men and women are struggling to find work.  Twenty-three million people, unemployed or underemployed.  Nearly one in six Americans is living in poverty.  Millions of young Americans have graduated from college during the Obama presidency, ready to use their gifts and get moving in life.  Half of them can’t find the work they studied for, or any work at all.

So here’s the question: Without a change in leadership, why would the next four years be any different from the last four years?

The first troubling sign came with the stimulus.  It was President Obama’s first and best shot at fixing the economy, at a time when he got everything he wanted under one-party rule.  It cost $831 billion – the largest one-time expenditure ever by our federal government.

It went to companies like Solyndra, with their gold-plated connections, subsidized jobs, and make-believe markets. The stimulus was a case of political patronage, corporate welfare, and cronyism at their worst. You, the working men and women of this country, were cut out of the deal.

What did the taxpayers get out of the Obama stimulus?  More debt.  That money wasn’t just spent and wasted – it was borrowed, spent, and wasted.

Maybe the greatest waste of all was time. Here we were, faced with a massive job crisis – so deep that if everyone out of work stood in single file, that unemployment line would stretch the length of the entire American continent.  You would think that any president, whatever his party, would make job creation, and nothing else, his first order of economic business.

But this president didn’t do that.  Instead, we got a long, divisive, all-or-nothing attempt to put the federal government in charge of health care.

Obamacare comes to more than two thousand pages of rules, mandates, taxes, fees, and fines that have no place in a free country.

The president has declared that the debate over government-controlled health care is over.  That will come as news to the millions of Americans who will elect Mitt Romney so we can repeal Obamacare.

And the biggest, coldest power play of all in Obamacare came at the expense of the elderly.

You see, even with all the hidden taxes to pay for the health care takeover, even with new taxes on nearly a million small businesses, the planners in Washington still didn’t have enough money.  They needed more.  They needed hundreds of billions more.  So, they just took it all away from Medicare.  Seven hundred and sixteen billion dollars, funneled out of Medicare by President Obama.  An obligation we have to our parents and grandparents is being sacrificed, all to pay for a new entitlement we didn’t even ask for.  The greatest threat to Medicare is Obamacare, and we’re going to stop it.

In Congress, when they take out the heavy books and wall charts about Medicare, my thoughts go back to a house on Garfield Street in Janesville.  My wonderful grandma, Janet, had Alzheimer’s and moved in with Mom and me.  Though she felt lost at times, we did all the little things that made her feel loved.

We had help from Medicare, and it was there, just like it’s there for my Mom today.  Medicare is a promise, and we will honor it.  A Romney-Ryan administration will protect and strengthen Medicare, for my Mom’s generation, for my generation, and for my kids and yours.

So our opponents can consider themselves on notice.  In this election, on this issue, the usual posturing on the Left isn’t going to work.  Mitt Romney and I know the difference between protecting a program, and raiding it.  Ladies and gentlemen, our nation needs this debate.  We want this debate.  We will win this debate.

Obamacare, as much as anything else, explains why a presidency that began with such anticipation now comes to such a disappointing close.

It began with a financial crisis; it ends with a job crisis.

It began with a housing crisis they alone didn’t cause; it ends with a housing crisis they didn’t correct.

It began with a perfect Triple-A credit rating for the United States; it ends with a downgraded America.

It all started off with stirring speeches, Greek columns, the thrill of something new.  Now all that’s left is a presidency adrift, surviving on slogans that already seem tired, grasping at a moment that has already passed, like a ship trying to sail on yesterday’s wind.

President Obama was asked not long ago to reflect on any mistakes he might have made.  He said, well, “I haven’t communicated enough.”  He said his job is to “tell a story to the American people” – as if that’s the whole problem here? He needs to talk more, and we need to be better listeners?

Ladies and gentlemen, these past four years we have suffered no shortage of words in the White House.  What’s missing is leadership in the White House.  And the story that Barack Obama does tell, forever shifting blame to the last administration, is getting old.  The man assumed office almost four years ago – isn’t it about time he assumed responsibility?

In this generation, a defining responsibility of government is to steer our nation clear of a debt crisis while there is still time.  Back in 2008, candidate Obama called a $10 trillion national debt “unpatriotic” – serious talk from what looked to be a serious reformer.

Yet by his own decisions, President Obama has added more debt than any other president before him, and more than all the troubled governments of Europe combined.  One president, one term, $5 trillion in new debt.

He created a bipartisan debt commission. They came back with an urgent report.  He thanked them, sent them on their way, and then did exactly nothing.

Republicans stepped up with good-faith reforms and solutions equal to the problems.  How did the president respond?  By doing nothing – nothing except to dodge and demagogue the issue.

So here we are, $16 trillion in debt and still he does nothing.  In Europe, massive debts have put entire governments at risk of collapse, and still he does nothing. And all we have heard from this president and his team are attacks on anyone who dares to point out the obvious.

They have no answer to this simple reality: We need to stop spending money we don’t have.

My Dad used to say to me: “Son.  You have a choice: You can be part of the problem, or you can be part of the solution.”  The present administration has made its choices.  And Mitt Romney and I have made ours: Before the math and the momentum overwhelm us all, we are going to solve this nation’s economic problems.

And I’m going to level with you: We don’t have that much time.  But if we are serious, and smart, and we lead, we can do this.

After four years of government trying to divide up the wealth, we will get America creating wealth again. With tax fairness and regulatory reform, we’ll put government back on the side of the men and women who create jobs, and the men and women who need jobs.

My Mom started a small business, and I’ve seen what it takes. Mom was 50 when my Dad died.  She got on a bus every weekday for years, and rode 40 miles each morning to Madison.  She earned a new degree and learned new skills to start her small business.  It wasn’t just a new livelihood.  It was a new life.  And it transformed my Mom from a widow in grief to a small businesswoman whose happiness wasn’t just in the past.  Her work gave her hope.  It made our family proud.  And to this day, my Mom is my role model.

Behind every small business, there’s a story worth knowing.  All the corner shops in our towns and cities, the restaurants, cleaners, gyms, hair salons, hardware stores – these didn’t come out of nowhere.  A lot of heart goes into each one.  And if small businesspeople say they made it on their own, all they are saying is that nobody else worked seven days a week in their place.  Nobody showed up in their place to open the door at five in the morning.  Nobody did their thinking, and worrying, and sweating for them.  After all that work, and in a bad economy, it sure doesn’t help to hear from their president that government gets the credit.  What they deserve to hear is the truth: Yes, you did build that.

We have a plan for a stronger middle class, with the goal of generating 12 million new jobs over the next four years.

In a clean break from the Obama years, and frankly from the years before this president, we will keep federal spending at 20 percent of GDP, or less.  That is enough.  The choice is whether to put hard limits on economic growth, or hard limits on the size of government, and we choose to limit government.

I learned a good deal about economics, and about America, from the author of the Reagan tax reforms – the great Jack Kemp.  What gave Jack that incredible enthusiasm was his belief in the possibilities of free people, in the power of free enterprise and strong communities to overcome poverty and despair.   We need that same optimism right now.

And in our dealings with other nations, a Romney-Ryan administration will speak with confidence and clarity.  Wherever men and women rise up for their own freedom, they will know that the American president is on their side.  Instead of managing American decline, leaving allies to doubt us and adversaries to test us, we will act in the conviction that the United States is still the greatest force for peace and liberty that this world has ever known.

President Obama is the kind of politician who puts promises on the record, and then calls that the record.  But we are four years into this presidency. The issue is not the economy as Barack Obama inherited it, not the economy as he envisions it, but this economy as we are living it.

College graduates should not have to live out their 20s in their childhood bedrooms, staring up at fading Obama posters and wondering when they can move out and get going with life.  Everyone who feels stuck in the Obama economy is right to focus on the here and now.  And I hope you understand this too, if you’re feeling left out or passed by: You have not failed, your leaders have failed you.

None of us have to settle for the best this administration offers – a dull, adventureless journey from one entitlement to the next, a government-planned life, a country where everything is free but us.

Listen to the way we’re spoken to already, as if everyone is stuck in some class or station in life, victims of circumstances beyond our control, with government there to help us cope with our fate.

It’s the exact opposite of everything I learned growing up in Wisconsin, or at college in Ohio.  When I was waiting tables, washing dishes, or mowing lawns for money, I never thought of myself as stuck in some station in life.  I was on my own path, my own journey, an American journey where I could think for myself, decide for myself, define happiness for myself.  That’s what we do in this country.  That’s the American Dream.  That’s freedom, and I’ll take it any day over the supervision and sanctimony of the central planners.

By themselves, the failures of one administration are not a mandate for a new administration.  A challenger must stand on his own merits.  He must be ready and worthy to serve in the office of president.

We’re a full generation apart, Governor Romney and I.  And, in some ways, we’re a little different.  There are the songs on his iPod, which I’ve heard on the campaign bus and on many hotel elevators. He actually urged me to play some of these songs at campaign rallies.  I said, I hope it’s not a deal-breaker Mitt, but my playlist starts with AC/DC, and ends with Zeppelin.

A generation apart. That makes us different, but not in any of the things that matter.  Mitt Romney and I both grew up in the heartland, and we know what places like Wisconsin and Michigan look like when times are good, when people are working, when families are doing more than just getting by.  And we both know it can be that way again.

We’ve had very different careers – mine mainly in public service, his mostly in the private sector. He helped start businesses and turn around failing ones. By the way, being successful in business – that’s a good thing.

Mitt has not only succeeded, but succeeded where others could not.  He turned around the Olympics at a time when a great institution was collapsing under the weight of bad management, overspending, and corruption – sounds familiar, doesn’t it?He was the Republican governor of a state where almost nine in ten legislators are Democrats, and yet he balanced the budget without raising taxes. Unemployment went down, household incomes went up, and Massachusetts, under Mitt Romney, saw its credit rating upgraded.Mitt and I also go to different churches.  But in any church, the best kind of preaching is done by example.  And I’ve been watching that example.  The man who will accept your nomination tomorrow is prayerful and faithful and honorable. Not only a defender of marriage, he offers an example of marriage at its best. Not only a fine businessman, he’s a fine man, worthy of leading this optimistic and good-hearted country.Our different faiths come together in the same moral creed.  We believe that in every life there is goodness; for every person, there is hope.  Each one of us was made for a reason, bearing the image and likeness of the Lord of Life.We have responsibilities, one to another – we do not each face the world alone.  And the greatest of all responsibilities, is that of the strong to protect the weak.  The truest measure of any society is how it treats those who cannot defend or care for themselves.Each of these great moral ideas is essential to democratic government – to the rule of law, to life in a humane and decent society.  They are the moral creed of our country, as powerful in our time, as on the day of America’s founding.  They are self-evident and unchanging, and sometimes, even presidents need reminding, that our rights come from nature and God, not from government.

The founding generation secured those rights for us, and in every generation since, the best among us have defended our freedoms.  They are protecting us right now.  We honor them and all our veterans, and we thank them.

The right that makes all the difference now, is the right to choose our own leaders.  And you are entitled to the clearest possible choice, because the time for choosing is drawing near.  So here is our pledge.

We will not duck the tough issues, we will lead.

We will not spend four years blaming others, we will take responsibility.

We will not try to replace our founding principles, we will reapply our founding principles.

The work ahead will be hard.  These times demand the best of us – all of us, but we can do this.  Together, we can do this.

We can get this country working again.  We can get this economy growing again.  We can make the safety net safe again.  We can do this.

Whatever your political party, let’s come together for the sake of our country.  Join Mitt Romney and me.  Let’s give this effort everything we have.  Let’s see this through all the way.  Let’s get this done.

Thank you, and God bless.

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Ann Romney Delivered the Strongest and Most Effective Speech of the Night: See the Video

   Bookmark and Share  Under a theme of “We Built It”, the first night of the Republican convention successfully articulated its point that Barack Obama is out of touch with most Americans who value the principles which made this nation great and who understand that America’s greatness lies within its people, not its government. And while speaker after speaker helped to drive that point home, it was Ann Romney who stole the night with a speech that stunned listeners right out of the political settings of the convention and drew them in to a pleasant and even inspiring personal story that introduced her husband, Mitt Romney, to voters in a way and context that they have not before seen him in. (See the video and full text of her speech below this post)

Ann Romney’s carefully crafted speech immediately caught your attention thanks in large part to the startling difference in tone she struck from the onset.  Before she took to the stage, each of the speakers who preceded her delivered speeches filled with the type of political red meat that pumped up partisans want to hear.  But Ann Romney came out and in dramatic fashion, promptly filled the convention arena with an air of civility and sweetness that quickly captivated her audience as she  looked straight into the camera and said, “I want to talk to you tonight about that one great thing that unites us, that one thing that brings us our greatest joy when times are good, and the deepest solace in our dark hours. Tonight I want to talk to you about love.”

It was a sharp but brilliant transition from the ideological arguments that define a political convention to a more conversational dialogue about everyday life.  In this case, everyday life with a potential President of the United States.  It was a perfect introduction of Ann Romney to the nation that left viewers with a pleasant, positive and even endearing impression of her.  And it not only left viewers with a positive sense of herself, it also helped open a door to the creation of a fresh new impression of Mitt Romney.  Up to now, with hundreds of millions of dollars in negative ads by the Obama campaign, Mitt Romney has been defined largely as a cold blooded, robber baron who grew up with a silver spoon in his mouth.  But Ann Romney’s convincing description of her life with Mitt, helped to turn the impression that team Obama has created of Mitt Romney into a false impression.  With great success, Ann Romney softened Mitt Romney’s image and pushed away the dark picture drawn by Democrats that depict him as a plutocrat with an easy, carefree, life.

She explained how when first married, she and Mitt moved into a basement apartment where they sat at a desk that was actually a door propped up on sawhorses and ate at a fold down ironing board that doubled as their kitchen dinner table.   And she assured people that success for her and her husband did not just fall into their laps.  In one of the most powerful moments in her speech, Romney looked into our eyes and stated But as his partner on this amazing journey, I can tell you Mitt Romney was not handed success. He built it.”

And for those who may fall for the liberal class warfare tactics and try to motivate voters against the Romney’s by inspiring them to envy the Romney’s by describing their relationship as a “storybook marriage”, Ann Romney offered a one of her most poignant points of the night when she said;

“I read somewhere that Mitt and I have a “storybook marriage.” Well, in the story books I read, there were never long, long, rainy winter afternoons in a house with five boys screaming at once. And those story books never seemed to have chapters called MS or Breast Cancer.”

Ann Romney’s speech had many potent lines.  But it was her delivery that made them convincing and ultimately the most succesful speech of the evening.  With grace and confidence one could not help but sense a genuine sense of honesty in her words….. words that lacked the type of partisanship which often spoil the otherwise honest assessments of a speaker’s topic of discussion.

Romney’s speech was exactly what was needed to attract independent voters who could live without the partisan political propaganda that conventions are made of.  Coming from Ann, every point she stressed seemed to be more logical than political.  While others addressed  the very real class warfare tactics that Democrats are trying to wage, they did so in harsh terms that has a tendency to make voters tune out and write off as being typical political rhetoric.  But Ann Romney broached that issue by addressing it on a personal level rather than a political level by putting it this way;

It’s true that Mitt has been successful at each new challenge he has taken on. It amazes me to see his history of success actually being attacked.  Are those really the values that made our country great?  As a mom of five boys, do we want to raise our children to be afraid of success? Do we send our children out in the world with the advice, “Try to do… okay?”

With Ann Romney, gone were the harsh phrases and direct accusations of political treachery.  Instead she replaced them with an everyday approach to the issue that made one have to actually think about whether being successful is really a bad thing to be.

In her approximately 20 minute speech, the future First Lady touched upon every point the campaign needed to addres, but two things made it the best and most successful speech of the first night of the convention……… context and presentation.  It was the lack of overtly political and blatantly ideological context that she used when addressing those points that made each one she touched  believable and convincing to the larger group of voters outside the walls of the convention.  And that it was a truly well written, well delivered, well strategized political speech is suppose to do.

Full Text of Ann Romney’s Speech

Mrs. Ann Romney

Republican National Convention

August 28, 2012

Luce, thank you for that kind introduction.

I want to talk to you tonight not about politics and not about party.

And while there are many important issues we’ll hear discussed in this convention and throughout this campaign, tonight I want to talk to you from my heart about our hearts.

I want to talk not about what divides us, but what holds us together as an American family. I want to talk to you tonight about that one great thing that unites us, that one thing that brings us our greatest joy when times are good, and the deepest solace in our dark hours.

Tonight I want to talk to you about love.

I want to talk to you about the deep and abiding love I have for a man I met at a dance many years ago. And the profound love I have, and I know we share, for this country.

I want to talk to you about that love so deep only a mother can fathom it — the love we have for our children and our children’s children.

And I want us to think tonight about the love we all share for those Americans, our brothers and sisters, who are going through difficult times, whose days are never easy, nights are always long, and whose work never seems done.

They are here among us tonight in this hall; they are here in neighborhoods across Tampa and all across America. The parents who lie awake at night side by side, wondering how they’ll be able to pay the mortgage or make the rent; the single dad who’s working extra hours tonight, so that his kids can buy some new clothes to go back to school, can take a school trip or play a sport, so his kids can feel… like the other kids.

And the working moms who love their jobs but would like to work just a little less to spend more time with the kids, but that’s just out of the question with this economy. Or that couple who would like to have another child, but wonder how will they afford it.

I’ve been all across this country for the past year and a half and heard these stories of how hard it is to get ahead now. I’ve heard your voices: “I’m running in place,” “we just can’t get ahead.”

Sometimes I think that late at night, if we were all silent for just a few moments and listened carefully, we could hear a great collective sigh from the moms and dads across America who made it through another day, and know that they’ll make it through another one tomorrow. But in that end of the day moment, they just aren’t sure how.

And if you listen carefully, you’ll hear the women sighing a little bit more than the men. It’s how it is, isn’t it?

It’s the moms who always have to work a little harder, to make everything right.

It’s the moms of this nation — single, married, widowed — who really hold this country together. We’re the mothers, we’re the wives, we’re the grandmothers, we’re the big sisters, we’re the little sisters, we’re the daughters.

You know it’s true, don’t you?

You’re the ones who always have to do a little more.

You know what it’s like to work a little harder during the day to earn the respect you deserve at work and then come home to help with that book report which just has to be done.

You know what those late night phone calls with an elderly parent are like and the long weekend drives just to see how they’re doing.

You know the fastest route to the local emergency room and which doctors actually answer the phone when you call at night.

You know what it’s like to sit in that graduation ceremony and wonder how it was that so many long days turned into years that went by so quickly.

You are the best of America.

You are the hope of America.

There would not be an America without you.

Tonight, we salute you and sing your praises.

I’m not sure if men really understand this, but I don’t think there’s a woman in America who really expects her life to be easy. In our own ways, we all know better!

And that’s fine. We don’t want easy. But these last few years have been harder than they needed to be. It’s all the little things — that price at the pump you just can’t believe, the grocery bills that just get bigger; all those things that used to be free, like school sports, are now one more bill to pay. It’s all the little things that pile up to become big things.  And the big things  — the good jobs, the chance at college, that home you want to buy, just get harder.  Everything has become harder.

We’re too smart to know there aren’t easy answers. But we’re not dumb enough to accept that there aren’t better answers.

And that is where this boy I met at a high school dance comes in. His name is Mitt Romney and you really should get to know him.

I could tell you why I fell in love with him — he was tall, laughed a lot, was nervous — girls like that, it shows the guy’s a little intimidated — and he was nice to my parents but he was really glad when my parents weren’t around.

That’s a good thing.  And he made me laugh.

I am the granddaughter of a Welsh coal miner who was determined that his kids get out of the mines. My dad got his first job when he was six years old, in a little village in Wales called Nantyffyllon, cleaning bottles at the Colliers Arms.

When he was 15, dad came to America. In our country, he saw hope and an opportunity to escape from poverty. He moved to a small town in the great state of Michigan.  There, he started a business — one he built himself, by the way.

He raised a family. And he became mayor of our town.

My dad would often remind my brothers and me how fortunate we were to grow up in a place like America.  He wanted us to have every opportunity that came with life in this country — and so he pushed us to be our best and give our all.

Inside the houses that lined the streets of our town, there were a lot of good fathers teaching their sons and daughters those same values.  I didn’t know it at the time, but one of those dads was my future father-in-law, George Romney.

Mitt’s dad never graduated from college. Instead, he became a carpenter.

He worked hard, and he became the head of a car company, and then the governor of Michigan.

When Mitt and I met and fell in love, we were determined not to let anything stand in the way of our life together. I was an Episcopalian. He was a Mormon. 

We were very young. Both still in college. There were many reasons to delay marriage, and you know?  We just didn’t care.  We got married and moved into a basement apartment. We walked to class together, shared the housekeeping, and ate a lot of pasta and tuna fish.  Our desk was a door propped up on sawhorses.  Our dining room table was a fold down ironing board in the kitchen.  Those were very special days.

Then our first son came along.  All at once I’m 22 years old, with a baby and a husband who’s going to business school and law school at the same time, and I can tell you, probably like every other girl who finds herself in a new life far from family and friends, with a new baby and a new husband, that it dawned on me that I had absolutely no idea what I was getting into.

That was 42 years ago. Now we have five sons and 18 grandchildren and I’m still in love with that boy I met at a high school dance.

I read somewhere that Mitt and I have a “storybook marriage.” Well, in the storybooks I read, there were never long, long, rainy winter afternoons in a house with five boys screaming at once. And those storybooks never seemed to have chapters called MS or Breast Cancer.

A storybook marriage?  No, not at all. What Mitt Romney and I have is a real marriage.

I know this good and decent man for what he is — warm and loving and patient.

He has tried to live his life with a set of values centered on family, faith, and love of one’s fellow man. From the time we were first married, I’ve seen him spend countless hours helping others. I’ve seen him drop everything to help a friend in trouble, and been there when late-night calls of panic came from a member of our church whose child had been taken to the hospital.

You may not agree with Mitt’s positions on issues or his politics. Massachusetts is only 13% Republican, so it’s not like that’s a shock.

But let me say this to every American who is thinking about who should be our next President:

No one will work harder.

No one will care more.

No one will move heaven and earth like Mitt Romney to make this country a better place to live!

It’s true that Mitt has been successful at each new challenge he has taken on. It amazes me to see his history of success actually being attacked.  Are those really the values that made our country great?  As a mom of five boys, do we want to raise our children to be afraid of success?

Do we send our children out in the world with the advice, “Try to do… okay?”

And let’s be honest. If the last four years had been more successful, do we really think there would be this attack on Mitt Romney’s success?

Of course not.

Mitt will be the first to tell you that he is the most fortunate man in the world. He had two loving parents who gave him strong values and taught him the value of work.  He had the chance to get the education his father never had.

But as his partner on this amazing journey, I can tell you Mitt Romney was not handed success.

He built it.

He stayed in Massachusetts after graduate school and got a job. I saw the long hours that started with that first job. I was there when he and a small group of friends talked about starting a new company.  I was there when they struggled and wondered if the whole idea just wasn’t going to work.  Mitt’s reaction was to work harder and press on.

Today that company has become another great American success story.

Has it made those who started the company successful beyond their dreams?

Yes, it has.

It allowed us to give our sons the chance at good educations and made all those long hours of book reports and homework worth every minute.  It’s given us the deep satisfaction of being able to help others in ways that we could never have imagined.  Mitt doesn’t like to talk about how he has helped others because he sees it as a privilege, not a political talking point.  And we’re no different than the millions of Americans who quietly help their neighbors, their churches and their communities.  They don’t do it so that others will think more of them.

They do it because there IS no greater joy.

“Give and it shall be given unto you.”

But because this is America, that small company which grew has helped so many others lead better lives. The jobs that grew from the risks they took have become college educations, first homes.  That success has helped fund scholarships, pensions, and retirement funds.  This is the genius of America: dreams fulfilled help others launch new dreams.

At every turn in his life, this man I met at a high school dance, has helped lift up others.  He did it with the Olympics, when many wanted to give up.

He did it in Massachusetts, where he guided a state from economic crisis to unemployment of just 4.7%.

Under Mitt, Massachusetts’s schools were the best in the nation. The best.  He started the John and Abigail Adams scholarships, which give the top 25% of high school graduates a four-year tuition-free scholarship.

This is the man America needs.

This is the man who will wake up every day with the determination to solve the problems that others say can’t be solved, to fix what others say is beyond repair. This is the man who will work harder than anyone so that we can work a little less hard.

I can’t tell you what will happen over the next four years. But I can only stand here tonight, as a wife, a mother, a grandmother, an American, and make you this solemn commitment:

This man will not fail.

This man will not let us down.

This man will lift up America!

It has been 47 years since that tall, kind of charming young man brought me home from our first dance. Not every day since has been easy.

But he still makes me laugh. And never once did I have a single reason to doubt that I was the luckiest woman in the world.

I said tonight I wanted to talk to you about love. Look into your hearts.

This is our country.

This is our future.

These are our children and grandchildren.

You can trust Mitt.

He loves America. 

He will take us to a better place, just as he took me home safely from that dance.

Give him that chance.

Give America that chance.

God bless each of you and God Bless the United States of America.

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Will Isaac Force Republicans To Cancel the Convention?

Bookmark and Share   Odds are that the convention won’t be cancelled but chances for it being severely altered are rising.

As Hurricane Isaac strengthens and plots a potential path of destruction aimed at the U.S. Gulf Coast, the Republican campaign for President finds itself captured in the eye of that storm as the schedule and fate of the Republican National Convention now becomes dictated more by wind speeds,  tidal surges and landfall timing than by the polling, performances and prime time speaking engagements that were suppose to shape the winning trajectory for the Romney/Ryan ticket in November.

On Sunday, as Isaac trekked across the Caribbean and entered the Southern Gulf of Mexico as a tropical storm, its potential proximity to Tampa, the location of the convention, forced G.O.P. convention organizers to essentially cancel the first day of the four day event.  It was a decision based on the priority of personal safety over  political performances.  And it was the right decision.  With over 50,000 visitors traveling to and from an arena that hangs on the edge of Tampa  bay as winds in excess of 65 mph swirled torrential rains around the heads of delegates and white caps of a tidal surge that was consuming the land convention goers stood upon, the chance of injury and even death is all too real to ignore.  For that reason, the cancellation of the first day’s events at the convention is not just good public policy, it is also good political judgment.

One could see a scenario where a line of 2,000 convention goers waiting to get in to a particular entrance at the Tampa Times Forum became ground zero for a freak accident that saw an electrical power line come down and electrocute those standing in an inch of water while in that line .   Or maybe that same line saw dozens in it struck by a store sign that was shredded off a nearby building by a strong gust of wind that carried it into the line of people filing in to the convention.   Such tragedy would not only have taken the headline away from the event those people were attending, Republicans would rightfully have to explain how they could be expected to safely run the nation when they could not even safely run  their own convention?

So Republicans made the right decision and by putting personal safety first, they also made the right political decision.

But now as the exact track and strength of Isaac continues to develop, even though Tampa and the Republican convention remains on its periphery and largely outside of the storms most violent conditions, it is anticipated to strike areas of the Northwestern Gulf Coast and right about when the prime time coverage of the convention is to begin on Tuesday night.

Isaac currently remains a tropical storm but as it meanders over ocean waters that approach temperatures in excess of 90 degrees and is expected to slow down and continue gaining strength from those temperatures, it is expected to become a hurricane with winds up 95 mph and a tidal surge that could range anywhere from 6 to 12 feet high.  Just as Isaac builds up to that strength its eye is expected to be fast approaching the Gulf Coast somewhere around Louisiana and Mississippi at the same time that Republicans begin to make their case for Mitt Romney.

While the convention itself will be taking place approximately 450 miles from ground zero for the landfall of Isaac’s eye, its participants will not be in any danger by any means but just as people like Ann  Romney are suppose to be praising her husband and pointing to the merits of his becoming their next President, a few million Americans from the coast of East Texas to the western panhandle of Florida will be experiencing the most damaging effects of Hurricane Isaac.  This does not create an appropriate setting for a national political celebration. Putting aside for a moment the paramount concern for life and property that will be in jeopardy, the Republican convention would find itself sharing a split screen that is displaying images of roofs being blown off of homes in New Orleans as a throng of jubilant convention goers waving flags and banners while wearing odd hats as they cheer the hard hitting words of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie offering the G.O.P. keynote address.   The surreal dichotomy between the havoc of Isaac and the hoopla of Christie or other engaging Republican speakers would leave a negative impression on those witnessing the spectacle which could be extraordinarily detrimental to Republicans.

So it is with justifiable caution that Republicans are now prepared to augment their convention even more than they already have by cancelling the first day of its schedule.  it is all contingent upon exactly how powerful Isaac will ultimately be as it hits the Gulf Coast and how damaging its torrential rains will be in the days following landfall as the jet stream sweeps its waterlogged remnants over the Eastern U.S. from the Gulf states to the New England states.

The consideration of additional changes to the convention and even its possible cancellation is based upon worst case scenarios and it is the worst case scenario which plays a significant role in the predictions and public warnings issued regarding Isaac.  Hopefully the worst case scenario will not come to fruition.  But if it does, Republicans will be prepared to deal with it accordingly.   However, as the G.O.P. prepares for all the possible scenarios they know that no matter what, they will share the headlines with Hurricane Isaac.   That will ultimately have at least a minimal impact on the bounce that Republicans get out of their convention but it will not drastically alter the final outcome of the election.

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G.O.P. Unviels the Stage for Romney’s Nomination at the Republican National Convention

   Bookmark and Share   Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus and convention Chief Executive Officer William Harris today unveiled the final stage for the Republican National Convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum.  This stage is a first of its kind for political conventions that utilizes 13 LED Screens with high pixel counts that will collectively create a large-scale backdrop with video capabilities.

Chairman Priebus said,

“I am proud to present you a stage that is fitting of the historic event that will kick off right here just one week from today. Our convention will connect with people across America and around the world from right here on this stage – through speakers and these incredible screens behind me. On any given night almost 40 million people will be joining us through television but we are also making an unprecedented effort to connect with millions more through our ‘convention without walls’ – a pioneering digital program focused on engaging people, building a strong community and amplifying convention messages.

“I am excited. The convention team is excited. Our party is excited, and America is excited. We are excited because we are ready for a new direction in our country. This isn’t just an election we have coming up. Nominating Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan here in Tampa at the 2012 Republican National Convention is the first step we are taking toward a better future for generations of Americans.”

Republican National Convention CEO William Harris said, “The stage is really incredible. We are using technology and digital capabilities that have never been used at a convention before. The high-tech stage brings this event to a whole new level and it will help people at home watching TV or watching us through YouTube online to be a part of the energizing experience here in Tampa.”

“A Better Future” Stage/Podium Facts & Figures

  • Approximately 318 production staff and crew built the podium totaling more than 30,000 man hours, 20,000 man-hours from the local production crew alone.
  • Some on the crew worked 16-hour days, and the main staff will work around the clock during convention
  • The team comes from 22 states.
  • The base crew began planning 1.5 years ago.
  • Set pieces are not made from disposable material like normal rock concertsthis set has all the highest quality material, incorporating the most advanced safety precautions.
  • Some set elements are so heavy that they had to be rigged from the ceiling to barely touch the rest of the set to keep the weight from crushing the podium.

PODIUM SCREENS

  • The Republican Convention is showcasing XL Video’s newest Pixled F-6 LED panels on world stage for the first time.
  • There are almost NINE MILLION total pixels in the screens and arena ribbons.
  • Screens are the backbone of the set. There are 15 LED screens total, 13 of which are on the stage. Screens are stacked in the space to create sense of depth.
  • They can form an unbroken panoramic image or be used individually to crate a collage effect.
  • The podium has a total of 2,402 square feet of LED screens, compared to standard 40’’ TV of 6.3 square feet.
  • The screens range in size from 8’6’’x 8’6’’ to 28’8’’x12’4’’. The largest screen is 381 square feet.
  • The stage/set uses three LED products:
  • Six center stage screens with 4 MM technology
  • Four screens with 6 MM technology
  • Canopy screens with 11 MM technology & Side screens with 11 MM technology
  • The set also includes live HD video feeds. The magnitude of this project required a 3-week installation
  • Screens are framed in 6’’ wood frames to keep screens from merging into one flat visual plane.
  • “Control Freak Systems” will be used to control the live HD video feed by combining TV truck feeds, cameras, video playback, graphics, social media streams onto screens. This includes 36 channels of HD Playback.

PODIUM DESIGN

  • The podium was designed with sense of “America’s Living Room.”
  • The design is based on a warm but modern approachtraditional American Prairie style architecture merged with modern technology.
  • The challenge was making a large-scale set that was also warm and inviting.
  • There are three canopy screens above the stage to frame it and contribute to its sense of intimacy. Mullions (vertical elements that form a division between units of a window) give the screens a feeling of skylight windows.  Angled side screens reinforce the design and showcase happenings to box seat guests.
  • Open frames and horizontal beams create a sense of architecture and balanced composition.
  • There are four tones of wood on the podium proper to provide texture and balance:
  • Frames: cherry wood faces with mahogany bevels
  • Steps: warm mahogany and threads of lighter cherry
  • Banding around stage: walnut and mahogany
  • Center of deck: warm light cherry

PODIUM LIGHTING

  • A custom-built gigabit fiber optic system is used to distribute data from the control panel to the individual lights using 14.79 miles of cabling and approximately 25,662 pounds of lights the  approximate weight of a U.S. Navy jet-powered drone.
  • There are 950 total lights including 267 incandescent lights and 390 arc lights.
  • The lighting system uses a color-mixing technology that creates an impression of texture.
  • State of the art fixtures include varillite, 30k, 3500k, 3500 spots, 3500 washes, PRG Best Boys, and Clay Paky Alpha Spot 700’s which produce the most crisp, clear lights.
  • The crew focused all of this lighting in the Times Forum in just six hours.

PODIUM SOUND

The convention acoustically treated 100% of the Times Forum ceilingthese are permanent improvements that will remain in the Tampa Bay Times Forum and allow for high-volume concerts, helping to attract future entertainment, business, and energy to Tampa.

The sound system contains 1.36 MILLION watts of amplifier power – compared to 300 watts used in a standard home stereo.

Total light and sound cabling equals 20.39 miles.

Sound system is made of:

  1. 159 JBL Line Array Speakers
  2. 22 Stage Monitor Speakers
  3. 202 Media Speakers
  4. 6 Digital mixing consoles
  5. 12 wireless microphones
  6. 80 standard microphones
  7. 348 press audio outputs

RIGGING

Certified rope access teams were hired to climb high beams and rig points to the highest parts of the Times Forum.

  • They rigged a total of 2,500 feet of trussalmost half mile.
  • 250,000 lbs. of lighting, audio and video gear are now suspended from the building’s roof.
  • There are 275 chain motors (rigging points).
  • The Times Forum’s 1,000 lb. Lightening Tesla coil suspended from the ceiling had to be moved to load
  • any materials onto the catwalk.

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Associated Press Confirms Romney Will Pick Paul Ryan for Vice President

Bookmark and Share   The Associated Press has confirmed White House 2012’s previous post which reported that Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney will nominate Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan for Vice President;

According to Associated Press;

“NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has picked Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan to be his running mate.       

A Republican with knowledge of the situation tells The Associated Press that Romney has chosen Ryan. The Republican spoke on condition of anonymity because this person was not authorized to disclose the decision.       

Romney was expected to introduce Ryan during a rally Saturday morning in Norfolk, Va.”       

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