President Nominated For Another Term
CHICAGO (AllPolitics, Aug. 28) -- President Bill Clinton won the Democratic nomination after a hard-hitting nominating speech by party chairman Sen. Christopher Dodd, who praised the president for getting a stalled country moving again. (384 WAV sound)
While taking some shots at GOP nominee Bob Dole, Dodd said America "is a nation on the march again, approaching a new century with new confidence." Highlighting the president's youth, Dodd described an idealistic and empathetic leader who, in the face of relentless personal attacks, had taken on the tobacco and gun lobbies and won. Clinton, Dodd declared, had presented a "bold and brave" economic recovery to put the country "back on track."
"Tonight, let me say it plainly: 'Mr. President, you did the right thing. You did the right thing for America.'" Dodd called the economy "stronger and more prosperous than it has been in more than three decades."
Just four years ago, Dodd recalled, a young Arkansas governor offered a "struggling" nation a way out of recession, crime, falling educational standards and diminished expectations.
"Parents looked in on their sleeping children -- and in the quiet of the night, worried that, no matter how hard they worked, those they most loved might inherit a lesser life in a lesser land," Dodd said.
Clinton, "who never had the joy of knowing his own father," understood Americans' difficulties and passed a recovery plan that appealed "to the best in each of us," said Dodd, praising the president for reducing the deficit, bringing down interest rates, cutting taxes for 15 million Americans and creating 10 million new jobs.
Dodd called Dole a "fine" man with a "flawed" agenda. (448 WAV sound)
"Remember, it was Senator Dole who said no to the family and medical leave act," Dodd charged -- and no to a minimum wage hike, to the enactment of Medicare, and to a woman's right to an abortion. He ridiculed Dole's "11th-hour" tax cut plan, which he claimed would lead to exploding deficits or "withering" cuts in Medicare, education, and the environment.
"And, remember, last year, Senator Bob Dole and Speaker Gingrich voted to cut Medicare by $270 billion. But for the president's veto pen, they would have succeeded." He dismissed Dole's proposal to eliminate the federal Department of Education, while recalling the Kansan's vote to trim education spending by $30 billion.
Saying Clinton had done "the right thing" for the country, Dodd credited the president for expanding Head Start, signing the Brady Bill, banning assault weapons, making it easier to go to college, and combating guns and drugs in schools.
In an effort to inoculate the president from what many expect to be a nasty campaign, Dodd said the relentless personal attack on the president and his family "has to stop -- and stop now." "Stop attacking the president's family," he said. "Stick to the issues. We may at times oppose one another, but we must always respect each other."
Dodd appealed for a return to civility, for a campaign "worthy of the people we seek to lead, and of the land we love." (512 WAV sound)
Drawing an analogy from the president's train trip to Chicago, Dodd called Clinton ready for "a new journey into the heart of America...he has the courage, the vision and the commitment to bring all America together to the threshold of a new century."
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