In the final run-up to his convention, President Barack Obama implored college students Tuesday to help him get out the vote, calling the election a chance to “close the gap between what America should be and what it is right now.”
** QUICK HITS. The indifferently awaited Democratic National Convention has gotten underway in rainy, muggy Charlotte, North Carolina, home of the NASCAR Hall of Fame, with Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa chairing. … First Lady Michelle Obama speaks tonight, along with official keynoter San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro. … But the real keynoter is former President Bill Clinton, who will deliver the nominating speech Wednesday night for President Barack Obama. Obama and Vice President Joe Biden will speak on Thursday outdoors in a big stadium. … Several California political figures will address the convention, among them House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, state Attorney General Kamala Harris, former state Controller Steve Westly, and billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer. State Democratic chairman John Burton headed for home, he said to undergo a root canal, after likening Republican tactics to the Big Lie propaganda techniques of Joseph Goebbels. A fair point, but a losing one for a politician to indulge in. … Governor Jerry Brown isn’t attending this convention, with many bills to deal with and proposition politics to handle. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo will only be on hand for a few hours, despite the plane ride from New York only taking two hours, and won’t address the convention. … There are demonstrators on hand, but the numbers are small, as was the case last week in Tampa for the Republicans. So much for the Occupy movement.
** NEW COLUMNS COMING UP … SO WHAT THE HECK HAPPENED WITH CLINT EASTWOOD? (AND THE PERILS OF ARGUING WITH IMAGINARY OBAMAS), CONSIDERING THE SEMI-BONDIAN DARK KNIGHT RISES (WHICH JUST ROSE TO $1 BILLION) and WHILE ONE CLINTON WOWS AT THE OBAMARAMA, ANOTHER PIVOTS TO THE LONG GAME.
** NEW POLLS: ROMNEY SPEECH LOWEST RATED SINCE BOB DOLE, CANDIDATE GETS NO CONVENTION BOUNCE, GOP CONVENTION GETS LOW RATINGS. Two new Gallup Poll surveys have bad news for conservative Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
The first poll reveals that Romney’s ballyhooed acceptance speech on Thursday night was the lowest rated since Bob Dole’s in 1996.
Was that in part because of Clint Eastwood’s misconceived and executed introductory remarks?
The poll doesn’t say.
Here’s what it does say:
Romney’s acceptance speech this year scored low by comparison to previous convention speeches going back to 1996. Thirty-eight percent of Americans rated the speech as excellent or good, while 16% rated it as poor or terrible. The 38% who rated the speech as excellent or good is the lowest rating of any of the eight speeches Gallup has tested since Bob Dole’s GOP acceptance speech in 1996. …
Only the Republican convention in 1996 was viewed on TV by fewer Americans. The most watched of the eight based on this measure was the 2008 Republican convention in which McCain was nominated for president and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was confirmed as the Republicans’ vice presidential nominee.
In fact, Romney is the first Republican in Gallup polling who did not receive a convention bounce.
Romney becomes one of three recent nominees — and the first Republican — who did not receive a convention bounce, joining George McGovern in 1972 and John Kerry in 2004. Both McGovern and Kerry, like Romney, challenged incumbent presidents, with McGovern suffering a landslide defeat to Richard Nixon and Kerry losing a close election to George W. Bush.
President Barack Obama wrapped up his ‘Road to Charlotte’ tour in Norfolk, Virginia on Tuesday morning, with a rally in front of more than 11,000 people at Norfolk State University.
** NEW COLUMNS COMING UP … SO WHAT THE HECK HAPPENED WITH CLINT EASTWOOD? (AND THE PERILS OF ARGUING WITH IMAGINARY OBAMAS), CONSIDERING THE DARK KNIGHT RISES (WHICH JUST ROSE TO $1 BILLION) and WHILE ONE CLINTON WOWS AT THE OBAMARAMA, ANOTHER PIVOTS TO THE LONG GAME.
** OBAMA TODAY. President Barack Obama is in Washington and Virginia.
Obama received the daily intelligence and economic briefings in the Oval Office.
He then flew on Air Force One to Norfolk, Virginia.
At 9:35 AM Pacific, Obama addressed a rally at Norfolk State University.
At 12:25 PM Pacific, Obama departs Norfolk, Virginia on Air Force One en route Joint Base Andrews.
At 1:25 PM Pacific, Obama arrives at Joint Base Andrews, where he boards Marine One.
At 1:40 PM Pacific, Obama lands on the South Lawn of the White House.
This ends Obama’s “Road to Charlotte” tour which took him through several swing states over the past several days.
Obama will accept the Democratic presidential nomination at the convention in Charlotte, North Carolina on Thursday evening at a giant rally in Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium, which seats over 70,000 people.
Former President Bill Clinton will deliver the nominating speech for Obama on Wednesday night.
Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden and Dr. Jill Biden arrive in Charlotte at 12:30 PM Pacific.
Though her husband will not arrive until sometime on Thursday, First Lady Michelle Obama addresses the convention tonight.
While Bill Clinton prepares to make the big push for his wife’s former opponent who is now the president, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is in the midst of six-nation tour of the Asia Pacific region as part of the still under-reported and less understood geopolitical pivot from over-engagement with the Islamic world of the Middle East and Central Asia to increased engagement with Asia and the Pacific.
After appearing at the annual summit of Pacific island nations, held in Rarotonga, capital of the Cook Islands, Clinton went on to Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, where Obama himself lived as a boy.
The US is seeking to work with Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, on the South China Sea and other matters.
Indonesia is part of the South China Sea but makes no special claims on on it. Instead, it is seeking to forge agreement on a multilateral code of conduct for the sea, virtually all of which is claimed by China, to the grave displeasure of Vietnam, the Philippines, and other nations.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton latest big geopolitical “Pivot” tour took her today to Beijing, where she is pressing China to agree to peacefully resolve disputes with its neighbors over competing territorial claims in the South China Sea. But China, which claims virtually the entire body of water, questioned the stated neutrality of the U.S.
Obama is monitoring several geopolitical crises involving the Arab Awakening, Iran and Israel, Syria, Iraq, AfPak, and the South China Sea.
Military Crisis Zone Times: The Persian/Arabian Gulf is ten hours ahead of Pacific time and Afghanistan is eleven and a half hours ahead of Pacific time. The time in Manila, on the South China Sea, is fifteen hours ahead of Pacific time.
** FROM THE JERRY FILES. Governor Jerry Brown is in Northern California.
He has no scheduled public events as of this morning.
Brown, who is not attending the Democratic National Convention, is working on the many bills sent on to him by the legislature, which ended its session for the year on Friday night.
** AFTER THE ROMNEYRAMA, AND MORE SERIOUS MATTERS. …
From my August 30th essay.
** SPACE, JERRY BROWN’S PLACE, AND A RACE. … From my August 27th essay.
** AN INSULAR ROMNEY STRUGGLES WITH HIS SURPRISINGLY HEARTFELT VEEP PICK AFTER STRIKING OUT INTERNATIONALLY. … From my August 23rd essay.
** RECALLING TOTAL RECALL: INTRIGUE, ULTRA-VIOLENCE, HUMOR AND WHAT ELSE THAT IS MISSING FROM THE SCHWARZENEGGER REMAKES. … From my August 17th essay.
** LONDON’S GRAND OLYMPICS, ON AND OFF THE TRACK. … From my August 13th essay.
** FROM GOVERNATOR TO MOONBEAM. … From my January 3rd, 2011 feature.
** OBAMA: RIDING WITH HISTORY. (NOTE: As Barack Obama was inaugurated as the 44th president of the United States, this column was the featured column on the top of the front page of the Huffington Post.) … From my January 19th, 2009 Huffington Post column.
** 24/7 LIVE TV NEWS FEED FROM AL JAZEERA. With the US entangled in major military operations in the region, and the Arab awakening underway, it’s valuable to keep up with news and perspectives from the leading Middle Eastern-based TV news network. Click here for a live TV news feed on your computer. The NWN live link to AJ does not constitute an endorsement of the channel’s views. It’s presented as an otherwise unavailable new media window.
** 24/7 LIVE TV NEWS FEED FROM RUSSIA TODAY. Russia has re-emerged as one of the world’s great powers. Click here for a live TV news feed on your computer from the Russia Today channel. The NWN live link to RT does not constitute an endorsement of the state-run channel’s views. It’s presented as an otherwise unavailable new media window.
** TRACK GLOBAL AND NATIONAL ENERGY PRICES IN NEAR REAL TIME VIA BLOOMBERG ENERGY MARKET WATCH. Having crashed over $147 for yet another record on July 11th, 2008, crude oil is trading around $95 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
This is up about $61 from the low of $34 per barrel prior to enactment of the Obama economic recovery program, reflecting a low point in global economic activity, and down about $19 per barrel from the price at the time of the Osama bin Laden raid.
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