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Democratic National Convention: Bill Clinton delivers rousing speech

Former President Bill Clinton speaks at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., on Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2012.
September 5, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Former President Bill Clinton seemed to relish the role he played addressing the Democratic Party faithful and nation, officially nominating President Barack Obama for another term and validating his policies in a high-energy 48-minute speech.

"I want to nominate a man cool on the outside but burning for America on the inside," the former president said. "A man who believes we can build a new American Dream economy driven by innovation and creativity, education and cooperation."

"I want Barack Obama to be the next President of the United States and I proudly nominate him to be the standard bearer of the Democratic Party," he added.

As Mr. Obama listened with delegates to the Democratic convention, Mr. Clinton said Americans have a choice between the winner-take-all society supported by Republicans and a Democratic vision of shared responsibility and prosperity.

Mr. Clinton talked about Mr. Obama's willingness to reach across the aisle, even working with former adversaries.

"He appointed Cabinet members who supported Hillary (Clinton) in the primaries. Heck, he even appointed Hillary," Mr. Clinton said to cheers.

He then went on to explain, point by point, how the Republicans distorted President Obama's positions.

When it came to Medicare, in which the Mitt Romney-Paul Ryan team have accused the president of raiding $716 billion from seniors to pay for Obamacare, something nonpartisan independent fact-checkers have said is not true, Mr. Clinton said, "What the president did was to save money by taking the recommendations of a commission of professions, to cut unwarranted subsidies to providers and insurance companies that were not making people healthier ? President Obama and the Democrats didn't weaken Medicare, they strengthened Medicare."

Mr. Clinton criticized congressional Republicans for refusing to work with the president on the economy.

"As the Senate Republican leader said, in a remarkable moment of candor, two full years before the election, their No. 1 priority was not to put America back to work, is was to put the president out of work," Mr. Clinton said.

"Republican economic policies quadrupled the debt before I took office, in the 12 years before I took office, and doubled the debt in the eight years after I left. We simply can't afford to give the reins of government to someone who will double-down on trickle-down," Mr. Clinton said.

On jobs, Mr. Clinton pointed out that the stimulus lowered taxes for nearly all Americans, and once in 2012 when they started to kick in, the economy started adding jobs instead of losing them.

Later in the evening, Democrats officially nominated Mr. Obama for a second term as president, setting up a showdown this fall with Romney. In a raucous roll call of states that stretched into early Thursday, Ohio put the president over top.

Look for ongoing reports from ABC7 Anchor Marc Brown at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.

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