The DNC: You can feel the difference

Editor’s Note: “Our woman at the DNC,” Jessica Coates, is sending real-time observations and tweets (@jessicalcoates) to the Carrboro Commons and Durham VOICE. Coates is a rising senior at Southk Mecklenburg High School and a future journalism major at UNC-CH.


By Jessica Coates
Special Correspondent
The Durham VOICE and Carrboro Commons

Tuesday night, Sept. 4.

I somehow have schmoozed my way into the Time Warner Cable arena, and am now standing nearly 200 feet away from some of the most influential politicians of our age.

Special Correspondent Jessica Coates.

And as I stare down at the stage I’ve become so familiar with on C-SPAN, I cannot help but be overwhelmed by the beauty of our country’s democracy. I will refrain from giving you sound bytes, (which you’ve probably gotten more than enough of thus far in the campaign), but it certainly would be easy to use corny, cliche lines to describe this scene.

It also seems, (even though I am a Democrat and may be biased), that there are a lot statistics and actual issues being presented tonight at the DNC. After watching Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan’s speeches last week at the RNC, it feels like there is a sizable difference between the quality and accuracy of the two events.

Speakers are discussing issues that are favorable to Obama, such as gay marriage, education, and women’s rights, but they are generally backing them up with facts. And there has been some throwing under the bus of Romney, but not nearly as much foul play as I noticed from the Republican speakers.

One thing that voters must learn to accept about party conventions is that candidates’ really cannot air their dirty laundry during them; therefore, positive jargon is a given.

After hearing personal narratives from former Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel about how Obama reads ten letters a night from average Americans, and after hearing from actor Kal Penn about Obama’s determination to pass the Dream Act directly after it was rejected, it’s easy to get excited–which is exactly what they want.

But then, today, the speakers backed up their appeals to pathos with facts; like the fact that Obama has added 4.5 million jobs in the past 29 months.

Regardless of the accreditation of the event, it is amazing to be here. The energy in the air is potent, I’m surrounded by people who are excited about the future of our nation, and I have gotten within 200 feet of Michelle Obama.

The future looks bright.

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