October 26, 2004
Love FestIn front of an estimated crowd of 80,000-100,000, Bill Clinton joined John Kerry on the campaign trail in Philadelphia. For someone who just had a quadruple bypass, Clinton--who was correctly introduced as the last duly elected President of the United States--looked good. Some say it's the biggest crowd the city has seen since the Pope's visit and the Phillies' World Series parade. "If this isn't good for my heart, I don't know what is," Clinton said.
Though Clinton was very gracious and called this election "a clear choice between two strong men, with great convictions and different philosophies, different policies, with very different consequences for this city, this state, our nation, and the world", there is no mistaking which one he thinks is the better choice.
"Their plan is more of the same," Clinton said. "They gave two huge tax cuts to upper-income people like me and to special interests, they've run these big deficits...and they're saddling it on our children. John Kerry's got a better plan." He got big cheers when he said, "from time to time, I have been called the Comeback Kid. In eight days, John Kerry's going to make America the Comeback Country".
Karl Rove said that pulling Clinton out of his sick bed showed that John Kerry is desperate. I say it's a brilliant move, because the mere presence of Bill Clinton reminds people just how much worse off they are with George W. Bush. Rove has to face it: there is no star brighter in the political firmament than Bill Clinton. It's his misfortune that Ronald Reagan is gone and the best he can do is Rudolph Giuliani.
CNN's Robert Novak derided John Kerry, saying he didn't get a much needed "charisma transplant" from Bill Clinton. Novak proved once again what a political hack he is, repeating the standard Republican line in the same way that they branded Gore "stiff" four years ago. By the way CNN, give it up; no amount of vacuousness will put you ahead of Fox. Didn't you learn anything from John Stewart?
I can't account for Novak's eyesight, but the biggest cheers and roars from the crowd were for John Kerry. He was passionate and fiery, mincing no words in his critique of Bush:
"The incredible incompetence of this president and this administration has put our troops at risk, and put this country at greater risk than we ought to be," Kerry said, calling the missing explosives "one of the great blunders" of Bush's war effort.Here is a challenger who fearlessly confronts Bush and points out his failures, failures that have been evident for the last four years but never brought up in Bush's rarified presence. In the debates the nation finally saw what John Kerry is made of; after the debates, he continues to prove that he's the man for the job.
• Image from afp & reuters via yahoo.com.
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