August 25th, 2008
11:45 PM ET
6 years ago

Gergen: Michelle Obama rescued the night

Michelle Obama rescued the night, Gergen says.
Michelle Obama rescued the night, Gergen says.

The Democrats should be enormously grateful to Michelle Obama: after a very slow start to the convention, punctuated by a moving tribute to Teddy Kennedy and his own rousing speech, the first evening was in danger of becoming an entirely lost opportunity. But Michelle rescued it.

She was extraordinary, talking in ways that were both conversational - always welcome in people's living room - but also inspiring. She spoke in ways that reached out to people of all backgrounds. Democrats should be both proud and grateful.

It is impossible to know whether how many people will accept her message. To a significant degree, that is of course because she represents such a departure from the traditional order of things in America. She represents a new future - of women who are not only devoted mothers and wives but also highly educated, caring people ... and, yes, African-Americans, Hispanics, and people of many diferent backgrounds. One day the country will be there. Is it prepared to be there now? I'm frankly not sure. We are living through one of the most important chapters in the American story

soundoff (483 Responses)
  1. Janet Ahler

    What was served up on this website was far different than what I heard listening and watching the TV coverage. I switched to C-Span because the CNN team was giving their opinions (many very negative and cynical) instead of allowing the audience to listen to the speakers. I thought that CNN was supposed to cover the news. The convention was the news. Instead CNN was making the convention all about them (the CNN team).

    August 26, 2008 12:59 am at 12:59 am |
  2. TheBigAl

    This is it. Instead of a senile Senator with 7 (or is it 11?) houses to his name, we meet a loving family, real people who care about each other. I started out for McCain, but now I'm totally for Obama, who is the only candidate trying to do the most good for the greatest number of Americans. McCain is a Bush clone, interested in giving away the bank to the oil companies. Time for a change.

    August 26, 2008 12:59 am at 12:59 am |
  3. sar

    I was really surprised at Mr. Carville. It seemed to me that he loves the Clintons so much, he's giving the republicans footage for McCaine attack ads. It's clear that he supports the Clintons over the Democratic party which he says he is a part of. Mr. Carville, Hillary lost.

    August 26, 2008 12:59 am at 12:59 am |
  4. Canadian Watching

    As a conservative I wish our leaders in Canada could give a speech half as good as Michelle Obama. I am extremely envious of a majority of your political figures, so many can inspire people to get involved.

    August 26, 2008 12:59 am at 12:59 am |
  5. John

    For the love of god, cover more of the speeches and less of your own talking heads. I don't care what your panel of highly worn commentators think about delaware being moved to the front of the room... I don't care that you have a camera following some clip-board carrying dude in the hallway all about the convention center... and it's just plain insulting to sit there and listen to you speculate AGAIN about the shenanigans you think Hillary's supporters are going to bring later in the week when perfectly respectable speakers are giving speeches in the background.

    August 26, 2008 01:00 am at 1:00 am |
  6. Reasonable Observer

    Wondering if Michelle Obama will go back out to campaign. If so, it will be interesting to see if she continues to project the attitudes, etc. from tonight's speech, or when unscripted, she goes back to some previous attitudes, etc.

    It is hard to believe that she has changed that much in such a short time, even if her husband is the "change" candidate.

    August 26, 2008 01:00 am at 1:00 am |
  7. Amy

    CNN, that is how the media does. turn a wonderful meeting up side down, cut, twist the fact, reports things in half, stir the anger, put the negative on something even does not exist, acts like media knew everything, well, that is how media makes money ! makes Carville happy !

    August 26, 2008 01:00 am at 1:00 am |
  8. McKAY

    CNN is so bias they couldn't even cover the House Speaker Pelosi, and Sen. Claire's speeches– It is obviously who CNN is supporting. I can't get it why they couldn't cover House speaker's speech–pathetic. The same thing CNN was doing 8 and 4 years that got stupid man elected twice. MSNBC or ABC should have covered this Democratic convention not CNN.

    August 26, 2008 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  9. John Lawrence

    I thoroughly agree with Dave. How can the "talking heads" listen and talk at the same time. I will watch the convention on C-Span.

    August 26, 2008 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  10. KELLIE

    After tonight's convention, I am sold.

    As for West Virginia (the state I vote in)...If Obama showed up to a WEST VIRGINIA MOUNTAINEERS HOME FOOTBALL GAME IN MORGANTOWN, WV...HE WOULD WIN THE STATE GAURENTEED!

    August 26, 2008 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  11. Former Independent

    Michelle rescued the night?

    What convention were you watching?

    McCain 08!!!

    August 26, 2008 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  12. Terry St. Louis

    What is up with CNN's graphic at the bottom of the television screen (during the coverage). At least on CNNHD it cut-off names during the Kennedy tribute. It did not need to be so large and it really did not add anything in my opinion.

    Michelle Obama is an excellent speaker.

    August 26, 2008 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  13. Robert M. Reidy N.Y.

    Michelle Obama – strong, intelligent, personable, witty, and thoroughly
    authentic, what more could you ask for ?

    She just gained many women voters from both parties and indipendents!

    She is Barack Obama's secret weapon!!!

    August 26, 2008 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  14. tan

    Michelle Obama was wonderful and so eloquent in her speech. Her family is a beautiful American family. I'm so happy to have someone special and uplifting like Obama in this election.

    August 26, 2008 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  15. Jonathan

    I have always been loyal to CNN in the past, but tonight's television coverage of the convention was abysmal.

    All you were interested in showing was distracting commentary criticizing speeches you yourselves weren't even listening to! I think I'll be watching C-SPAN tomorrow. Less annoying "graphics" to ignore, too.

    Come on CNN! The convention wasn't bad tonight- YOU were.

    August 26, 2008 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  16. Peter

    Michelle Obama's speech at the DNC tonight left me thinking that she should become our first woman president. In 2016. After Barack's eight years are up. Wow.

    August 26, 2008 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  17. dorothy

    Michelle Obama, may have put the Icing on the Cake, but the Entire Night was filled with valuable Information, with meetings of substance to educate voters, and Democrates that want to get involved, make this a better World.

    They do not spend time asking panelist what Barack Obama, or Michelle Obama, need to do to kiss up to the Clintons, or how they can relate to the working people. Because if they listen to their stories, we relate to the working People, more than the ELILIST, Hillary Clinton, John or Cindy McCain. But CNN, and the Main Stream Media, is very bais, to create Doubt. Character is what many of you do not possess.

    Dorothy, OK

    August 26, 2008 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  18. patrick

    Go democrats michelle was beautiful she is an amazing woman. She is a role model for all women. she is a product of her own hard-work. it was not handed down to them like cindy's and john. john mccain ought to be ashamed of himself talking about cindys dad's money. he didn't even earn the money he has what a dirtbag.

    August 26, 2008 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  19. Linda, Illinois

    I am here after the speeches to see what they are saying on CNN. I watched the whole Convention on another cable newwork....

    JUST LIKE I WATCHED THE COMMERCIALS ON THE OTHER NEWWORK,

    JUST LIKE I EMAILED SEVERAL OF CNN'S SPONSORS.

    I GAVE UP ON CNN A FEW MONTHS AGO to be fair and balanced!

    August 26, 2008 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  20. Souza

    Who cares if she is a great mom, wife, bla bla bla. Tell me something new. Now why doesn't she go home a cook up a meal for the family after the convention.
    A one liner for Clinton was already used. 18 million cracks.
    They sure repeat themselves alot.
    Biden with 35 years in the system is not what Obama says change will come from.
    Change to Obama means "Change your mind" FISA, Oil Drilling bla, bla bla

    August 26, 2008 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  21. j

    CNN is far from being the best political team... I had to watch msnbc and c-span. mostly c-span because you can actually see and hear the speakers and not Hillary and Bill so called bitterness and unhappiness the entire broadcast.

    August 26, 2008 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  22. jo

    CNN did a horrible job in it's coverage of the Dems Convention. I had to turn to PBS in order to see what was going on and to actually listen to each speech. PBS waited until the end of the night's activities to give various analysis.

    August 26, 2008 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  23. Marcia

    Maybe if you idiots on CNN did not talk through the entire convention night you would have heard the substance that the rest of the American people heard. Good thing we had TV1 and CSPAN.

    August 26, 2008 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  24. banderson

    I hope this truly inspiring story is publicized by the media who only seem to concentrate on the controversial issues. One way you can tell Michelle Obama did a good job is because the conservative talk show radio personnel have not commented on her speech. Good Job Michelle.

    August 26, 2008 01:04 am at 1:04 am |
  25. Nick

    i was absolutely appalled by CNN's coverage of the first night of the convention. We heard so little of what was actually being said, and the rest of it was Big Bad Wolf Blitzer giving his "reaction" to it. Give us some content CNN. We know you're madly in love with Hillary, but could you make it a little less obvious?

    August 26, 2008 01:04 am at 1:04 am |
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