Liveblogging the Prez & First Lady, Fred Thompson & Joe Lieberman

IAfter I’m done with the radio show, I’ll be live blogging the RNC. Come on back, ya’ll! I’ll be over at Right Wing News, too.

8:35 CST Gary Sinise film on Michael Mansoor. (sp?/corrected) History about him here at Blackfive. He fell on a grenade to save his buddies. “I will not fail.” “Country first. Roger, that.” I’m in tears.

Now, Orson Swindell who was a POW with John McCain. He thanks the vets.

8:45 CST Prez speaking from Cross Hall in the East Wing of the White House and be piped in via Satellite by a screen that is 50×30 feet. Huge and high definition. Everyone is standing and saluting Bush 41 and Michael Mansoor’s mom just got a hug from 41.

8:48 CST Laura Bush getting a standing “O” and looking ravishing in red. People love her. She looks so happy. I think she’ll be so relieved to get the hell out of DC. “The Republican party has a strong ticket.” She is thrilled that the first Vice President will be a “Republican woman”. “Women have always played an important part of our party. Thank you to the dedicated women in our audience who have made our party so strong.” Now she’s listing the women who worked for GW. Everyone is cheering.

She wants to tell us about the “man I love”. “George remains a man of strong values with enduring love for the United States of America.” “America hasn’t heard very many facts. Let’s call it straight talk.” She’s talking about education reforms. Today, student achievement is raising across the board. Test scores for minorities highest they have ever been. Now she notes John Roberts and Samuel Alito. 35 Governors from both parties have started faith-based outreach of their own. “Thanks to the president’s emergency relief nearly 2 million receive AIDS meds, only 50K when GW took office.” He is using his influence to protect children around the world–malaria. 50 million people live in freedom not in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Money quote: “And let’s not forget, President Bush has kept the people of America safe.”

8:56 PM President George Bush

Commending governors for dealing with Gustav. Now talking about John McCain. He is noting John McCain’s heroism to stay in the POW camp for five more years. “His arms had been broken, but not his honor.

Money quote: “If the Hanoi Hilton could not break his will do what is best for American, the Angry Left never will”

“Life must be defended. John is an independent man who thinks for himself. “This man is honest and speaks from the heart. Last year, his courage changed history. One Senator above all had faith in our troops and that was John McCain.” “He would rather lose an election, than see our country lose a war, that is the kind of courage and conviction we need in our next Commander in Chief”. “To protect America, we need to stay on the offense and not wait to be hit again. The man we need is John McCain.”

Frustration: the people are going nuts, but because Bush doesn’t have good feedback, he can’t let them cheer.

“Americans will look closely at the judgment, the policies and the values and they will vote for the McCain-Palin ticket.”

Now, he praises Laura for being a “fantastic first lady.”

Awesome speech! Short, sweet and sincere. Now, Laura Bush again. “John McCain has what it takes to lead the country the next four years.” Now she’s talking about Cindy McCain. Cindy McCain looks embarrassed and more school marmish than normal.

Now, a retrospective of Ronald Reagan. Sigh. What a great man.

9:12 CST Woot! It’s Fred Thompson!

“We know that we have challenges but we also know that we live in the freest, most generous nation in the world. What a breath of fresh air Governor Palin is.”

“Give me the Governor of Alaska who has taken on the establishment and won, against an insider any day of the week. She has run a municipality and she has run a state. She’s the only candidate of either party who knows how to properly field dress a moose with the possible exception of Teddy Roosevelt. When they get to Washington, they don’t care how much the alligators get irritated, they’re going to drain the swamp.”

Now, he’s talking about McCain’s character. Talking about the McCain’s sons who are coming and going from Iraq and the other one is going to the Naval Academy. Introducing the McCains and the kids. Cindy’s telling them to wave and stand up. John’s 96 year old mom Roberta. She looks great. “if it had been Ms. McCain captured by the Northern Vietnamese, they would have surrendered.” John earned a rep as a trouble maker in High School and Naval Academy. “Loaded with demerits, but never violated the honor code.” Now talking about McCain’s military experience.

“Broken leg when he fell, broken shoulder at butt of a rifle, pierce in the shoulder and groin, got dysentery, fever, survived that, put in the hole. Weighed less than 100 pounds. Put in solitary confinement for two years. “We hear a lot about hope these days. John McCain knows about hope. That’s all he had.” He refused to be released. The guards cracked ribs, broke teeth, cinched ropes around his arms, broke his arms, he was beaten for not given information, beaten for not giving the names of his squadron and gave the name of the offensive line of the Green Bay Packers. He would call out to his other POWs. For 5 and 1/2 years this went on. His bones may have been broken, but his spirit never was.

Being a POW doesn’t qualify anyone to be president but it does reveal character. This is the kind of character that citizens from the beginning of history have sought in their leaders. Strength, courage. wisdom, duty, honor. There are two questions we’ll never have to answer:
“Who is this man? And can we trust this man with the presidency?”

He’s been to Iraq 8 times. When he travels abroad he prefers to speak to the troops in quiet. “This man is not intimidated by what the polls say. John stood up and called for more troops and NOW WE’RE WINNING!” Crowd chanting “USA!!!!”

“I’ve experienced John’s character first-hand. We reformed welfare, balanced the budget and began rebuilding the military. He lead battle after battle to end the “pork barrel spending of Washington”. “Washington has always had big talkers. While others talk reform, John was making reform. John personified why we all came to Washington in the first place. A man who never quits is never defeated.”

He is not giving a teleprompter speech designed to appeal to America’s critics abroad. There has never been a time when the character, judgment and leadership was more important. Terrorists, rogue nations, belligerant Russia, economic competitive China…the Democrats put up a historic candidate the most liberal, inexperienced candidate in our nations history. It’s not reform and it’s not change. It’s the same old stuff they’ve been peddling for years. America needs a president who understands the nature of the world we live in and who does not feel the need to apologize for America. You don’t make citizens prosperous by making government richer.”

“Our opponents tell us not to worry about tax increases. They’re only going to tax businesses. They’ll only tax business that you buy from, get paid by, … It won’t affect you!” Huge applause.

“We need need a president who doesn’t think the protection of the unborn or a newborn is above his pay grade!” (Huge, huge, huge applause.)

The man who will be that president is John McCain. Put country first, with John McCain. Tonight we are being called on to do what is RIGHT for our country. Our country is calling. John McCain can’t raise his arms above his shoulders. He can’t salute the country for which he has sacrificed so much. So, we salute him. Let’s celebrate that vision, that faith!”

Oh. My. Goodness. He freaking hit the ball out of the park. Best speech of either convention so far. Amazing!!

Chuck Barry playing “Johnny be good”.

9:42 Joe Lieberman, John McCain’s best friend

He’s getting lots of applause. They love him here. Poor, Joe. He’s got such a dead-pan delivery and coming after Fred Thompson has to stink.

“It shouldn’t take a hurricane to bring us together like this.” Now, he’s being a liberal. Oy vey, talking about how hard life is for many Americans. Ugh. “All too often, they don’t see Republicans and Democrats fighting for the American people.” They see senseless partisanship.

I’m here for John McCain because country matters more than party! John McCain is the best person to lead our country and bring American forward. John McCain’s whole life testifies to a great truth: being a Democrat or Republican is important but nowhere near as important as being an American”

Wow, first guy to mention 9/11. I keep wondering when it would be mentioned. It’s like it never happened.

“My Democratic friends know about John’s record and his accomplishments, that’s why they’re spending so much money trying to make you think he’s someone he isn’t. God only made one John McCain.”

Oh brother, big corporations, global warming, blah, blah, “If John McCain is just another partisan, then I’m Michael Moore’s favorite Democrat. MONEY QUOTE: Senator Barack Obama is an eloquent and gifted YOUNG man, but eloquence is not substitute for a record in these tough times. In the Senate, Obama has not reached across party lines to get something down. I’d just ask you to contrast it with John McCain’s record.” Now, he’s bringing up Bill Clinton’s record of working with Republicans. Ahem.

Now, he’s talking about Governor Palin’s record of being a reformer and reaching across party lines. “She is a leader we can count on to help shake up Washington…that’s why I sincerely believe that the real ticket for change is the McCain-Palin ticket.” HUGE CHEERS.

“The Washington bureaucrats and power brokers will not be able to build a pen to hold them in. Together John and Sarah will fight for the American people and that’s what America needs most right now. What America needs now isn’t more party unity, but more NATIONAL unity. This is especially true because we are a nation at war. We need a President who will fight, not when it’s easy, but when it’s hard. I was there when John McCain sounded the alarm when things weren’t going well in Iraq. John McCain had the courage to stand against the tide of public opinion and fought for the surge and now the troops are coming home IN HONOR!

I have had the privilege and the pleasure (even with Lindsey Graham it was a pleasure) of traveling across the globe with John McCain. He is well-respected and well-liked.

Money quote: “In John McCain we have a leader our allies will trust and our enemies will fear.”

“These are not ordinary times and trust me John McCain is no ordinary candidate. You might not agree with John on every issue, but you can know that he will talk straight. He will be what he is naturally, a restless reformer who will get the government working for all American people.”

Joe Lieberman’s wife is cute is a button and shakes hands with Cindy McCain. This speech was aimed at Independents.

Overall impression, Fred Thompson’s speech told McCain’s story and fired everyone up. Joe Lieberman’s speech was to appeal to moderates and undecideds. We’ll see if it works. I think if the Left keeps attacking Palin, it will.

10:07 CST So, CBS and NBC didn’t show Thompson’s speech. Shocking (that was sarcasm). Fox showed it. They wonder why they’ve lost viewers. They did the same thing with Clinton’s speech. Interesting. I think every editorial decision they make is whether something will help or hurt Obama. Do they even make an attempt to not be biased? Bias is demonstrated by omissions as much as message and the press knows that.

Karl Rove thinks Lieberman and Thompson’s speeches should have been flipped, but would the other networks have covered Lieberman’s speech if it were earlier? It was the more important speech because it went after the Independents. Hmmm… Good first night, overall.

10:21 Howard Wolfson is livid, as are most Democrats, I’m guessing, because Joe Lieberman went to the other side. Ah well, the Dems screwed Lieberman in his Senatorial election and payback is hell. Joe Lieberman knows, more than anyone, what happens within the Democratic establishment if you dare violate the orthodoxy. I think that’s why he supported Sarah Palin when he didn’t have to. Unless you are a mindless Borg-like Democrat, you’re worthless. Talk about good soldiers. For all their talk of individualism, Gaia help you if you don’t submit. No wonder they like Islamic fundamentalists so much. Sheesh.

10:26 Charles Krauthamer “You have to admire the audacity of John McCain.”

“You can’t steal it, but you try to blunt the “change” issue and you win on readiness and leadership.”

Thoughts on Sarah Palin:
“It supports him on change, but it undercuts him on readiness.” He’s afraid it Sarah Palin will be a “double-edged sword”.

Okay, folks. Done. Interesting night.

10:36 Famous last words. Okay, last update. Man, the talking heads have trouble finding something nice to say about Sarah Palin. What elite snobs. Even on Fox, these guys seem like they are holding their noses. Makes me wonder how Tim Russert would deal with her. He’s a straight-talking guy who never lost touch with middle America. Would he allow the NBC reporters run rough-shod like this?

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