But what Clinton’s speech gained in policy substance, it lacked in a compelling governing vision. The whole speech was a masterful bit of sleight of hand: He touted his own economic record, attacked the Republicans for their hypocrisies — and then concluded that the correct response is to vote for Obama. Essentially, he tried to transfer his own economic record to the current president.
You could see that most when it came time to drive home the case for Obama. In the final stretch, he had to rely on airy defenses of the status quo: Vote Obama “if you want every American to vote and you think it is wrong to change voting procedures.” Vote Obama “if you think the president was right to open the doors of American opportunity to all those young immigrants brought here when they were young so they can serve in the military or go to college.”Vote Obama “if you want a future of shared prosperity, where the middle class is growing and poverty is declining, where the American dream is really alive and well again and where the United States maintains its leadership as a force for peace and justice and prosperity in this highly competitive world.” Vote Obama, in other words, if you want to live in Bill Clinton’s America.