Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Michelle Obama takes stage at Democratic National Convention and outshines Ann Romney, talks about women's rights, equal pay act, makes Black community proud once again, Ohio state Rep John Barnes Jr. comments from the convention on the first lady's speech, Barnes is among 13 Obama delegates from Ohio's 11th congressional district at the convention, former Ohio Gov Ted Strickland, Ohio's Joyce Beatty also spoke at convention Tuesday night

United States First Lady Michelle Obama speaks during the Democratic National Convention at its opening night Tuesday in Charlotte, NC.
By Kathy Wray Coleman, Associate Publisher, Editor, Cleveland Urban News. Com and The Kathy Wray Coleman Online News Blog.Com ( and (

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina- With Obama and  Mitt Romney in a dead heat, First Lady Michelle Obama took the stage at opening night Tuesday at  the Democratic National Convention and wooed America with her charm, wit, warmth, and oratory brilliance.

Her speech out -shined the mediocre one given last week at the Republican Convention by Ann Romney, who spent much of her speech making excuses for Mitt  Romney's billionaire status.

Dressed flawlessly in a sleeveless pink style designer dress, the first lady, whose approval ratings harbor at 70 percent, was articulate, given her background as an ivy league Princeton University law school graduate, and she made America's Black community proud.

She was down to the earth, and she said during her 35 minute speech that she loves her husband more and more each day, as a partner, a father, a family man, and as a scholar of a president who is not afraid to show his wife when he is  in deep thought in the oval office doing things like reading letters from the American people on issues impacting the country .

"Today, I love my husband even more than I did four years ago," said Michelle Obama.

She said that Obama gave up offers for lucrative jobs as an corporate attorney to become a community organizer on the south side of Chicago, and that family and community mean more to the president than fancy clothes and outings with America's elite power-brokers.

"He was the guy whose proudest possession was a coffee table he'd found in a dumpster, and whose only pair of decent shoes was a half size to small," she said

She roused audience members to their  feet at least four times, and said that Romney does not know the American dream because he was handed a silver spoon.

"Barack knows the American dream because he has lived it," Michelle Obama said. 

The first lady talked about the modest upbringings of she and Obama, her father a pump operator who worked tirelessly to put her and her brother through college in spite of the debilitating disease of multiple sclerosis, and Obama's maternal grandmother, who reared him along with his mother and maternal grandfather while facing equal pay discrimination on the job. 

America's first lady also talked public policy to a convention crowd of elected officials and loyal  supporters of the Democratic Party that were obviously pumped by her presentation, one that political pundits, and even Republican strategist Karl Rove, said might have been the best speech ever of any first lady.

She discussed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009, the first legislation Obama signed into law when he took office, and she reminded women that her husband is for a woman's right to choose, and that he will fight against federal policy initiatives that interfere with abortion rights.

"He [Obama] knows that women are capable about making decisions about our bodies and about health care," she said.

Ohio State Representative John Barnes Jr. (D-Cleveland)

Ohio state Rep. John Barnes Jr, a Cleveland Democrat and an Obama delegate featured live at the convention on CNN, said the first lady's speech was awesome, that the energy at the convention is high, and that Ohio is well represented there.(Editor's note: Stay tuned for more convention news all this week at Cleveland Urban News. Com In addition to Barnes the delegates to the convention from Ohio's 11th Congressional District, which is led by Democratic Congressperson Marcia L. Fudge, are all Black and include Meredith Turner,  who works as an outreach coordinator for U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown,  State Sen. Nina Turner (D-25), Cuyahoga County Councilpersons Yvonne Conwell (D-7), Pernell Jones (D-8)  and Julian Rogers (D-10), Cleveland Councilpersons Phyllis Cleveland and Jeff Johnson, Former Ward 7 Councilwoman Stephanie House, Community Organizer Gigi Travore, Community Affiliate Louise Buchanan, Cleveland Ward 10 Ward Leader Anthony Hairston and Blaine Griffin, vice chairman of the Cuyahoga County Democratic Party and head of the Community Relations Board for the City of Cleveland).

"The opening of the 2012 Democratic National Convention was absolutely spectacular, " Barnes told Cleveland Urban News.Com during an interview Tuesday night. "The program looked like America and it spoke to the dreams and admirations of people whose start was little but who have achieved the American Dream."

Barnes said that the first lady's presentation was impressive and that what stuck with was him was how Michelle Obama "observed her husband in the oval office reading letters from the American people about the challenges that they face on a daily basis."

Former Ohio Gov Ted Strickland speaks during the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday

And former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, who lost a bid for reelection in 2010 against John Kasich via a Republican sweep of statewide offices in Ohio, said that he proudly represents the pivotal state of Ohio at the convention.
"Let me tell you folks, in Ohio we know what happens when you have a president who stands up for average working people," said Strickland during his convention speech . "Today, from the staggering depths of the Great Recession, the nation has had 28 straight months of job growth. Workers across my state and across the country are getting back the dignity of a good job and a good salary."

Joyce Beatty, who represented Ohio's 27th House District from 1999-2008, gave opening remarks at the convention, and pushed education and women's issues.

Former Ohio State Representative Joyce Beatty gives opening remarks and pushes women's issues Tuesday evening at the Democratic Convention. Beatty is also a candidate this year for Ohio's 3rd congressional district, which includes Columbus
"We will move America forward," said Beatty, who is also a candidate this year for Ohio's 3rd congressional district, which includes Columbus. "America's success is dependent on the success of women in education, in business, in the military and in public service." 

Others that spoke Tuesday night include San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, and Deval Patrick, the first Black governor of Massachusetts.

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