Friday, February 8, 2008

The Billster at Dillard

Posted on Fri, Feb 8, 2008 at 5:42 PM

by Sam Winston

First impressions from Bill Clinton's speech at Dillard (after watching it online)...

- It was a bit of an inevitable letdown that Hillary was not there in person and the series of opening speakers and their "I know Bill knows that Hillary knows.." emphasized her absence in an unintended negative way.

- Bill Clinton can still give a good speech when he wants to

- Following the campaign talking points on Louisiana, he didn't waste much time in emphasizing that Hillary voted for the Oil revenues bill for Louisiana every time as opposed to Obama who voted for it at the end. With the Picayune already following that "storyline" it'll surely make it into local coverage, with what effect I'm not sure.

- He spent the majority of the speech on

Hillary's strengths. Policy, policy, policy.

- He did feel the need to defend his record and the questioning of the 90s as a period of prosperity which was about as personal as he got.

- He could have talked more about his Bush/Clinton Katrina fund but he mentioned it only in passing

- His reference to the "donut hole" of medicare was sort of funny.

- His 'remember how cool it was to be president' jokes about the coolest jet, skipping rush hour, and having his own theme music was even funnier.

- The closing of his speech was my least favorite part. The we didn't know about 9/11, Katrina, and the assassination of Benazir Bhutto when George W. Bush and Al Gore were running but that stuff happens when you are president line combined with an anecdote of a Iraq war veteran who has a prosthetic arm and can't remember a grocery list and doesn't have enough mental health support wrapping it up with Hillary remembers what was like for Vietnam Veterans so she won't let this happen anymore. I'd call it stretching and off the mark at best, or downright fear mongering at worst.

- All in all, an average speech I would say. Policy stances and political views of the candidates and the campaign narratives leading up to the past two days factored in or out of the process (all of that belongs in another blogpost), it would have been better for Louisiana Democratic voters if Hillary was there. It probably will have been much better for Hillary if she was there too.

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