At the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday night, former President Bill Clinton touted the benefits of political cooperation over partisanship and made the case for Barack Obama’s re-election.
Clinton framed Obama as master of inclusion, noting that the President had appointed Republicans to his administration and selected a Vice President who ran against him in 2008.
“He appointed Cabinet members who supported Hillary in the primaries. Heck, he even appointed Hillary!” he joked.
The Republicans, in contrast, seemed to hate Obama and the Democrats. Clinton said the Republican Party had become dominated by those who believed compromise was weakness.
Clinton admitted that even he could not have dealt with the crisis that Obama faced immediately after taking office. Though Americans were rightly frustrated with the economy, according to Clinton, it is wrong for Republicans to blame the President for a problem they helped create.
“In Tampa the Republican argument against the President’s re-election was pretty simple: We left him a total mess, he hasn’t finished cleaning it up yet, so fire him and put us back in,” Clinton said.
“I like the argument for President Obama’s re-election a lot better,” he continued. “He inherited a deeply damaged economy, put a floor under the crash, began the long hard road to recovery, and laid the foundation for a more modern, more well-balanced economy that will produce millions of good new jobs, vibrant new businesses, and lots of new wealth for the innovators.”
Clinton described Obama as having a balanced and progressive approach to economic recovery, while the Republican plan to slash the budget would only hurt the middle-class and the poor. He warned Mitt Romney would “double-down on trickle down.”
“The most important question is, what kind of country do you want to live in? If you want a you’re-on-your-own, winner-take-all society, you should support the Republican ticket. If you want a country of shared prosperity and shared responsibility — a we’re-all-in-this-together society — you should vote for Barack Obama and Joe Biden.”