August 26th, 2008
11:37 PM ET
10 years ago

Gergen: Hillary's finest hour

There will no doubt be cynics who thought that she didn't believe what she was saying, just as some cynics thought Michelle Obama last night wasn't the person who appeared on stage. But just as Michelle struck me as authentic last night, Hillary Clinton struck me as authentic tonight. And I have to add, Hillary also struck me as a class act.

Over and over again, I have heard that the Clintons only care about themselves. What we saw tonight is that Hillary Clinton cares a great deal about her party and her country, too. As both Governor Rendell and Candy Crowley have said on the air tonight, she posed exactly the right question to her supporters: were you in this just for me or were you in this for the larger causes? Isn't that the right question for Democrats?

What do you think? Would welcome your thoughts.

soundoff (629 Responses)
  1. Duke

    The nominee is not decided by a speech it is decided by a primary, a primary that Obama won, plain and simple. After tonight if you still feel like you need to vote McCain, then do that, but don't try to couch in country first because you can't be concerned about the country if you would vote for McCain. McCain and Hillary are diametrically opposed, so either you don't understand the issues at all which is possible or you are in this for some other illogical reason

    I am an Obama supporter, but my goodness, what a fine speech by Hillary. If Obama does win, then Hillary should be able to name whatever position she wants if she wants one.

    Enjoy it PUMAs, your numbers just decreased by half at least

    August 27, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  2. jr

    I've always liked Hillary. I switched to Obama when she started playing dirty and running negative "Karl Rovian" ads. Tonight she was the brilliant person I've admired. It's too bad she played dirty those months ago.

    August 27, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  3. Ohio3

    I was skeptical, but her speech tonight was excellent. Any of her supporters who still can't support Obama have their own issues. I am troubled that I understand Bill will not stay for Obama's speech - actions speak louder than words. I would also like to take issue with CNN. The quality of your coverage lately is slipping and you are straying from serious journalism. Why would you get that emotional woman to comment after such a wonderful moment? More Ricki Lake than serious media.

    August 27, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |

    i have to say,

    This Hillary speech, was better than any of her speeches while campaigning . The whole part about the torches and to KEEP GOING was historic and will be in history books as one of the true great political speeches.....

    I am happy for her and Obama,

    MCCain – you are and OK guy but it really is Not your time....

    and your 'friends' – Guiliani and Mitt etc etc.... they are beneath you and beneath contempt, They are slimy slippery lizards.

    August 27, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  5. Marlon

    Oh man, if you vote for McCain and he gets elected and your kids get drafted and die fighting in Iran or anywhere else, you deserve all the heartbreak of it.

    August 27, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  6. Joe

    Here come the Obamabots who trashed Hillary over and over now calling for UNITY.

    Sorry, Country First.

    McCain 2008

    Hillary 2012

    August 27, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  7. David

    I liked her attempts to say "where you in this for me, or where you in this for the issues?" But it could have been said so much better.

    She could have gone back to early in the primary season, when she said "There is very little difference between us as Democrats. But there are very big differences between us and the Republicans."

    She could have asked her supporters if they were really going to vote for someone who would not oppose putting more conservatives on the Supreme Court and could overturn Roe v. Wade.

    She could have asked her supporters if they were really going to vote for someone who does not share the same vision for healthcare that She and Obama do.

    She could have asked her supporters if they were really going to vote for someone whose only economic solution of cutting spending is the same broken record we're heard for the past 40 years and has dug us into one of the greatest financial holes in our nation's history.

    She did good tonight, but she could have done better.

    August 27, 2008 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
  8. Anne

    Shame on CNN for airing that female delegate's teary and highly emotional comments for what seemed to be an eternity, immediately following the speach. Why so much camera time? Why was the reporting so unbalanced. This woman went on and on about Hillary's "presidential speech," while ignoring the important message Hillary delivered! Why wasn't the obvious question asked? What about Hillary's message to you as her supporter? Bad end to what is normally good commentary.

    August 27, 2008 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  9. SandyJL

    Hillary gave a great speech tonight and sewed it all together seamlessly for those few supporters still hesitating to support Obama. She was exuberant and articulate and hit on every reason America has to turn their backs on "four more years of the last eight years" and all the reasons why we need Barack Obama. I don't think it could have been much better, and the naysayers are really nitpicking. Best speech of the convention thus far, hands down.

    August 27, 2008 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  10. John

    Great speech. But we don't get to vote for her?

    It's a little like getting a trial ride in a Lexus, knowing you are only going to get a Pinto.

    Hillary in 2012!

    August 27, 2008 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  11. CM

    Great speech! Great ticket!!

    August 27, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  12. wg

    To all of Hillary supporters, (including the PUMA ) who were thinking about going the other way, she posed a question to you. Were you in this for me? If you're still misguided, and bitter, you were really never with Hillary to start with.

    August 27, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  13. anonymous

    Sounds as if Bill still cannot make his mind up, one minute he is attending then the next he isn"t. Poor guy guess he has a lot on his mind since Hillary had to throw in the cards. Billy boy just knew they would be back in the White House. Then on top of that looks as if they are trying to recruit Chelsea. Poor Girl.

    August 27, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  14. Troy

    Denver must be out of Kool-Aid and Kleenex....I have never seen so many punch drunk, crying group in my life!

    Both Clinton and Biden said Obama didn't have the experience to could she not address her biggest knock on him during her speech?

    Thank heavens she didn't get the nomination...she would beat McCain with ease!

    August 27, 2008 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  15. independent now


    August 27, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  16. DEMOCRATS '08 BABY!!!!!

    As a proud former Hillary voter now Obama supporter, I can say that those PUMA nut jobs do not speak for me nor my family (also her supporters). I think your 18 million strong number is a bit overinflated like your egos.

    I actually listen to what my girl had to say and she is right– our future is way to important for you to throw a tantrum because she didn't win. And to MK, you're a fool. As a half African-American, half Caucasian male, I take offense to your statement. My mother would have attended an ivy league school, however, too many "legacy" (aka rich kids and non-minority kids) were getting her scholarships. What about the minorites that work just as hard but still don't get equal treatment? Just another biggoted statement from a fool.

    ....your comments are awaiting moderation...

    August 27, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  17. Michael

    To all of those who are saying if Obama wins Hillary will be blamed and has no chance to ever be President in 2012. If Obama wins he runs again in 2012 and if he wins in 2012 his VP will almost surley be the 2016 Presidential candidate. As long as Obama wins, Hillary can not run on the Democratic ticket as President because he did not make her the VP. If he had made her the VP she would have had a chance someday and I would be supporting the ticket. Obama is a fool to not realize this. She gave a great speech and I am so so proud of her. But Obama and the DNC has struck her down. I love Hillary and do not trust Obama. I will listen to him, but his bar has been set very very high.

    August 27, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  18. anze kopitar


    August 27, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  19. Janel, St. Paul, MN

    I am not a Hillary supporter, but I am grateful for the rousing speech she delivered tonight. I'm still glad that she was not the nominee for president or vice president, but am heartened that she showed that she is a Democrat. It was a terrific speech!

    August 27, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  20. ingram

    Response to MK: You are a fearful, racist pig. Your vile comments about Michelle Obama exposes your ignorance. I am not angry at you. I am truly sad for you and the pathetic life you must lead. Michelle a strong, intelligent, beautiful woman with an inspiring story to tell. You should learn from her grace. The world is changing . People like you will soon be fossils .

    August 27, 2008 12:26 am at 12:26 am |
  21. B. Lewis

    I am so proud to be a supporter of Sen. Hillary Clinton and this speech has raised my level of pride to infinity! She did a fantastic job in opening the path for Obama to herd in her supporters.

    Being African-American, I feel a little sad that I can't back the possible first black to be President. I wish I could be on the band-wagon, but I am not satisfied with just voting for hope and change. Hillary has re-iterated her platform and what changes, yes real CHANGES, that she could promise and give to America. That is what I supported and will continue til Sen. Obama show me more than hope and faith. He has 2 months to give me something to believe in.

    I still don't understand why she is not the candidate, she is smart, knowledgeable and experienced. I wonder what the party was thinking by pushing for Obama. Oh well, I am not bitter but I don't feel any reason to vote in November for either of the presidential candidates. I am a born and bred Democrat and can never vote for McCain, so I guess I will just vote local and leave the presidential choices blank. Come on Obama, invite us in, make us feel welcome to vote for you and please give me something to believe in. I don't want 4 more years of the same, but I don't want to waste my vote.

    Hillary has done her job, she has opened the doors. Barack, now it's your job to pull us in.

    August 27, 2008 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  22. TJ

    She brilliantly did what generations of women have done – step up and do the right thing, do what it takes to bring it home! And I am appalled at Hillary's supporters who wish that McCain would win so she can run in 2012 – this is stupid, there is no way we can handle/afford/tolerate 4 more years of Bush-style politics!

    August 27, 2008 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  23. Dave

    I guess all of these "Puma's" didn't hear or get what Hillary said tonite.
    I guess you all just want to slap her in the face for all the hard work she has done over the years. Very sad indeed. Someone once said that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or one. If your a Puma you really don't care about this great country, the families, children or its future.

    August 27, 2008 12:28 am at 12:28 am |
  24. god bless america!!!!

    To hillary supporters,
    This is not about a woman called hillary Clinton or a black man called barack obama, this is about your families, your kids, your lives, your future!
    the choice is simpleof clear!
    please think really hard!!!!!
    i was a big hillary supporter and i am proudly supporting obama! 2008 is for the democrats! we lost in 2000, we lost in 2004 and see where we are now! i cannot even afford gas for my car to go to schooll!!!
    our time is now!
    let s unite please!god bless u and god bless america!

    August 27, 2008 12:28 am at 12:28 am |
  25. HillaryRocks

    I wonder how many of these supposed "disgruntled" Hillary voters, are actually republicans stirring the pot to try to divide Democrats?

    August 27, 2008 12:29 am at 12:29 am |
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