Well, thankfully, the RNC and DNC have swept up all the confetti, popped all the balloons and are winging their way back home. All energized to get out the vote. The funny hats, catchy phrase buttons are now souvenirs of a week of history. Let the games begin.


October is just around the corner and we’ll have to endure 6 debates. Three presidential and three vice-presidential are scheduled. Will there be an October surprise? Will there be a Lloyd Benson moment? Will there be another Ronald Reagan quip like the one that completely reversed the momentum of the Walter Mondale campaign?

Debates can be dangerous things. One slip of the tongue can undo months of positives. I personally enjoyed the Republican debates this summer. A lot of people were surprised that the Republican candidates went after each other pretty good. Usually you are supposed to rail against the competition not your own party. I can only hope that the upcoming debates will as equally entertaining.

Tropical storm Isaac, then becoming hurricane Isaac, delayed the RNC and put a damper on some of the activities. Not easy to have a big party when people are losing their homes. However, Florida was in play for the republicans, and they took the chance, and it might come back to bite them.

In my opinion the republicans ran a “safe” convention. Not really any controversy or headline making oratory. Ann Romney, Marko Rubio, Paul Ryan, and Mitt Romney were all pretty predictable. Clint Eastwood made a surprise appearance speaking to an empty chair that was supposed to be the president. It got mixed reviews, not only from the talking media heads, but also with the Twitter, Facebook crowd. Had the weather been more cooperative their convention might have been completely different.

The day after Labor Day the Democrats got their shot. Right from the get-go they had some controversy. Labor Unions, who traditionally favor democrats, were upset that the convention was being held in a right-to-work state.

Michelle Obama gave a very good speech on opening night. Rahm Emanuel, on the other hand was barely believable, especially after all the press about his personality and language.

Then there was NFL football. The opening game of professional football was originally scheduled for Thursday, the night President Obama was scheduled to accept his party’s nomination for the presidency. Well the NFL rescheduled their game to Wednesday night and it was decided that both Vice President Biden and President Obama would give their acceptance speeches on Thursday.

On the second day the democrats did what they do best. Stir up emotions. The word God and Jerusalem, as the capital of Israel, were removed from the democratic platform. This erupted into a fierce debate from both sides and the two terms were eventually reinstated and the convention resumed.

Our own Governor, Brian Schweitzer, had an opportunity to address the audience. CNN was the only cable outlet that carried it as far as I could tell. He acquitted himself well and spoke well of our state to a national audience.

The high point of the convention for me was Bill Clinton’s speech. Not sure if it was intentional or not but I think he took a lot of the wind out of President Obama’s sails. He showed America, and the delegates, what a real democratic president looked like. Both great orators, but there are a stark differences between which one comes off looking presidential.

Last but not least — location, location, and location. The president was original scheduled to accept his party’s nomination at Bank of America Stadium home of the Carolina Panthers that seats 74,000. That was postponed due to weather although some speculated that the president could not fill the stadium. I guess we’ll never know for sure.

The President’s Acceptance Speech

Unfortunately the president simply made the same old tired campaign points he’s been making on the campaign trail for the past year and a half. So I guess you could say, like Romney and Ryan, he also played it safe. Rally the troops, confirm those “hot buttons” you know work. And begin the campaign in earnest starting today.

Some Final Thoughts

There are many more things that happened at the convention but time and space limit my thoughts. Anyway you get the idea. There are differences between these two parties. Both are shooting fast and loose with the facts and the fact checkers and bloggers will be working overtime to sort it all out.

The differences between these two candidates all come down to a single proposition. How they will spend your money. One thing is crystal clear — both will spend your money.

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