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The big gun of Republican party, Chris Christie, may have been scheduled for 10:30 the first night of the convention, but that did not stop the day’s first speakers from starting the fire fight early. Congressional candidates from across the country took to the stage and laid down the foundation for this season’s election campaign.
Each speaker incorporated the basic tenets of the conservative movement; smaller government, low taxes, and protection of life, all consistent themes in the conservative movement. Nothing new there. The real shots were measured in words about the results President Obama has gotten in the last three years. Congressional candidate John Archer of Iowa summed up the theme best,
“We’ve had three years of hope and change. Where has it gotten us?”
The strategy is clear, hammer away at the economic results the President has in his first term. President Obama’s record was target rich environment that each speaker took advantage to full effect. With two debt clocks clicking away overhead, each speaker made the case against the spending that has occurred under the President. Each ridiculed the idea of government creating success with a money giveaway. The consistent applause line was any statement proclaiming that, in fact, business owners did build their success, not government.
The die has has been cast and all republicans, at all levels will make this about the Obama record, unemployment, fighting tax hikes, and repealing Obamacare. The themes of the Romney campaign, “We Built It,” and “We Can Do Better,” are not just displayed in large placards around the hall, but found their way into each speech. Congressman, Tim Scott, summed up the feeling in the room succinctly by singing out, “Hit the road jack, and don’t you come back, no more, no more, no more.”
At the end of his rendition the crowd exploded in applause.
Convention speeches, especially the early afternoon ones, are staged affairs with every candidate attempting to get their 15 minutes of time. Circulated talking and speech points are passed and shared like candy bar freebies. No matter what the primary was like, everyone supports (in their speeches) the presumptive nominee. This true of all political conventions. The Republican convention is no different in that way, but there is a difference this year. There is a palpable air of urgency in each candidate.
This is expressed in the believe that the fiscal cliff the country is heading for could remake the country in a way the founders never wanted, envisioned, or would have agreed too. This is the election that could determine the future for not just the next decade, but for a generation. It is not just empty speeches, there is belief and fear as well. Stronger than either was a determination in each speaker’s voice that they were committed to winning the election and supporting Mitt Romney.
And this was just the warm up acts. The main act tonight of Ann Romney and Chris Christie will truly set this convention off.
Image Courtesy of NewsHour