PHILADELPHIA, July 28, 2016 — After an hour-long, full-throated speech, Hillary Clinton accepted the Democratic presidential nomination. If her goal was to fire up liberal partisans who would have preferred Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren, she may have succeeded.
If her goal was to appeal to regular Americans, she failed.
She had zero chance of being upstaged on her big night. Singer Katy Perry and Chelsea Clinton addressed Millennials with the pop fluff required of them.
The crowd applauded politely when Chelsea Clinton said she was a proud American; they roared approval when she said she was a proud Democrat.
Hillary Clinton had only to show that she’s finally learned how to give a normal speech to make this one a home run to much of the media. When Al Pacino yells in movies, it works. When Clinton yells in speeches, it grates. She needed to resist the urge to shout because when she does, she sounds shrill. That may be unfair—feminists will call it sexist that Donald Trump’s bellows are considered forceful, not shrill—but if people find it shrill, it’s shrill.
With violent protests occurring throughout this convention, Clinton had a tough road to navigate. If she keeps close to President Barack Obama, she upsets the overwhelming majority of people who feel America is on the wrong track.
If she breaks too far from Obama, she risks losing his leftist base, especially blacks.
She had to be all things to all people without appearing to be all things to all people. The delegates and the media would have loved her no matter what. She needed to remember that it is the people watching at home who will decide her fate in November. She did not.
Her challenge was to be likable.
Instead she decided to replay Obama’s 2012 campaign approach of “I am not that great but my opponent is far worse.” Hillary began combative and stayed that way.
“Some people just don’t know what to make of me.”
They know exactly what to make of her. She just refuses to accept this.
She offered plenty of sanctimonious blather that showed a complete lack of self-awareness.
“Do all the good you can, for all the people you can, in all the ways you can, for as long as you can.”
“It’s not just a detail. If it’s your kid, it’s a big deal.”
The families of the Benghazi victims may want to speak to her about that.
“We will stand up against mean and divisive rhetoric wherever it comes from.”
She said this while railing against Republican nominee Donald Trump. She accused him of being a bigot, the worst slur anyone can direct at anybody. She alternated calls of coming together with tearing into the half of America who disagrees with her.
She tried triangulating, as is the Clinton way. Two sentences after saying things in America are very good, she said that people think things are bad.
She thought that using the world “bold” made her bold simply because she said so. Hillary’s bold jobs plan is good jobs at good wages, which is every bit as inspiring now as when Michael Dukakis said it in 1988.
She promised ”millions of good-paying, clean energy jobs,” which was also promised by Obama in 2008. Her jobs plan is exactly the same as Obama’s 2008 stimulus plan that failed to stimulate growth.
She summoned her inner Liz Warren by paraphrasing Warren’s rant about how nobody got rich on their own.
Hillary said she would raise taxes on the rich to pay for her plans. Raising those rates to 100 percent still would not be enough to pay for her plans. What she is proposing is mass wealth confiscation that will leave everyone worse off. We know this because Obama tried it in 2008.
Hillary just took credit for the Iran deal. That deal was a surrender, not a deal, and John Kerry deserves at least some of the blame.
She attacked Trump’s responses to questions from reporters. As Trump pointed out, how would Hillary know? She is scared to death to questions and has not taken any from reporters in 235 days.
Clinton insisted, “I’m not here to repeal the Second Amendment. I’m not here to take away your guns.” This is patently false. She wants to make it easier to sue gun manufacturers to put them out of business. That is the same thing as banning them.
Hillary concluded her speech by moving from liberally borrowing the rhetoric of other liberals to outright plagiarism. The media blistered Melania Trump over some copied lines, and time will tell if Hillary is held to task for remarks often attributed to French thinker Alex de Tocqueville.
“America is great because America is good.”
Inside the convention, delegates who wanted to walk out of her speech were locked inside the room to prevent them from doing so. Meanwhile, at least one delegate held up a large pink sign saying “Boycott Israel.”
At no time did Clinton mention Benghazi. She barely spoke about her record, which is quite thin for someone who spent four decades in government. When asked to name her accomplishments, her supporters rush to the internet to find a supportive Huffington Post or New York Times column.
After an hour of shouting, Clinton ended the Democratic Convention and prepared for a grueling four months of yelling at Americans on the campaign trail. She wants a unified America where we come together.
If she has to scream at and demonize anyone who disagrees with her to do it, she will.