This is the first year since 1992 that I haven’t attended the Democratic Convention — and the first time since 2000 that I haven’t attended both the Democratic and Republican Conventions. I have watched hours of live coverage, read pages and pages of commentary and analysis. I even hosted a radio show discussing the role of digital and social media in this year’s conventions.
Here are some quick thoughts about the first night of the Democratic Convention:
The Democrats have, thus far, orchestrated a far better convention than the Republicans (and we are only one day into the event). Barring some sort of disaster, inside or outside of the arena/stadium in Charlotte, President Obama is likely to enjoy a far better bounce coming out of the convention that Mitt Romney. A benefit for sure of scheduling your convention a) after Labor Day (when people are back, preparing to return to school and work, and generally focused again on things that matter in the world), and b) after the Republicans (so you can see how their speakers lacked energy and failed to mention their candidate by name enough — and make adjustments before you take the stage). Factoid: Michelle Obama’s speech generated more tweets-per-minute than Mitt Romney (a measure of nothing beyond how many tweets people posted, not as some suggest a reflection of voter intent or similar, but still).
I have been asked why Deval Patrick didn’t give the keynote. Answer: Because a) he is from Massachusetts, b) he doesn’t represent a voting block (African Americans) that the President needs help to win (compared to Hispanics), and c) he’s not an up-and-coming star in the party, he is already a star. That said, he gave the best speech of the night — Michelle had the best delivery, but she needed a few more substantive points to knock it out of the park.
Bill Clinton will be the main attraction tonight… but, the Giants and Cowboys also kick off the NFL season. Unless Clinton’s speech falls during half time, I would expect the audience for football to dwarf the convention audience. I hope I am wrong.