DNC Dispatch – Night One

The energy here at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte is so incredible, and Michelle Obama’s speech Tuesday night just electrified the crowd. Here one of the many gems from her speech:

“I have seen firsthand that being president doesn’t change who you are. No, it reveals who you are… And as president, you are going to get all kinds of advice from all kinds of people. But at the end of the day, when it comes time to make that decision, as president, all you have to guide you are your values, and your vision, and the life experiences that make you who you are.”

That is something to think about when we know so little about who Mitt Romney really is – the man who hides his past and whose values and positions seem to change with the wind. But about Barack Obama’s values and experiences, Michelle Obama said:

“Barack knows the American Dream because he’s lived it, and he wants everyone in this country to have that same opportunity, no matter who we are, or where we’re from, or what we look like, or who we love. He believes that when you’ve worked hard, and done well, and walked through that doorway of opportunity, you do not slam it shut behind you. You reach back, and you give other folks the same chances that helped you succeed.”

And: “For Barack, success isn’t about how much money you make, it’s about the differences you make in people’s lives.”

This makes me proud to be a Democrat and proud to support President Obama! It expresses in personal terms our values of hard work, inclusiveness, fairness, opportunity, and giving others a hand up. A great opening night for this exciting gathering – and I’ll be sharing more as I can!

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First Lady Michelle Obama

2012 got off to an exciting start in Sarasota, with First Lady Michelle Obama dropping by for a visit on January 26.

I served as a member of the host committee and had the privilege of meeting Mrs. Obama at the event, which took place at a private home in Sarasota.  Her Sarasota visit highlights this area’s importance in November.

Mrs. Obama focused on her efforts to promote children’s health and wellness programs, as well as discussing the President’s key accomplishments over his first three years in office, including healthcare reform, financial industry reform, small business tax incentives, fair wage legislation and educational programs such as Race to the Top.

She also discussed the upcoming election, underscoring the President’s philosophy: “the President believes there are no second-class citizens in America. Every night he reads letters from citizens across the country and he feels strongly that everyone deserves the opportunity to make a better life.” Her visit was a great kick-off to 2012, invigorating locals and showing that Sarasota will be a key campaign destination between now and November.