WL Insider: A Dozen Defining Lines

by Editorial

Memorable quotes from this week’s Democratic National Convention.

By Sarah Valerio

Convention-goers were treated to many memorable lines at this week's DNC. (Photo courtesy NewsHour)

As soon as the Democratic National Convention came to a close last night, fact checkers went into motion, immediately pouring over transcripts as pollsters got to work generating numbers to determine President Barack Obama’s “convention bounce.” Political analysts are debating whether the purpose of the convention was to rally the base or reach out to undecided and independent voters, and whether it succeeded in doing so.

Few can debate, however, that the energy surrounding the DNC was electric and the enthusiasm palpable. Obama averaged over 52,000 tweets per minute during his prime time convention speech, trumping Gov. Mitt Romney’s paltry-by-comparison 14,000 tweets per minute. The first night of the DNC trumped the RNC in ratings — big time… by 3.9 million viewers.

So what exactly had people talking? The overarching theme of the DNC was one of morality and shared responsibility; the idea that all our fates are bound up together. It was crucially future-focused and forward-looking. And they carefully painted Governor Mitt Romney as a well-meaning — albeit out-of-touch — rich guy who would reinstate the failed policies of President George W. Bush.

Importantly, the DNC seemed to succeed where the Republican National Convention had failed; it struck a cord with people and spoke personally to them. This was accomplished with an array of stand-out speakers and memorable moments, including some stand-out quotes.

Here, the dozen statements we think defined the week at the DNC:

1.”We believe ‘we’re all in this together’ is a far better philosophy than ‘you’re on your own’.” — former President Bill Clinton

2. “It’s never a good bet to bet against the American people. Never. My fellow Americans, America is coming back, and we’re not going back. And we have no intention of downsizing the American dream.” — Vice President Joe Biden

3. “When you’ve walked through that door of opportunity you do not slam it shut behind you. No. You reach back and give others the same chances that helped you succeed.” — Michelle Obama

4. “Yes, our path is harder but it leads to a better place. Yes, our road is longer, but we travel it together. We don’t turn back. We leave no one behind. We pull each other up.” — President Barack Obama

5. “We all understand that freedom isn’t free. What Romney and Ryan don’t understand is that neither is opportunity.” — San Antonio, Tex. Mayor Julian Castro

6. “Our history teaches us shared prosperity is the only kind that lasts.” — AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka

7. “For Barack, success isn’t about how much money you make; it’s about the difference you make in people’s lives.” — Michelle Obama

8. “We learned about dignity and decency — that how hard you work matters more than how much you make. That helping others means more than just getting ahead yourself. We learned about honesty and integrity — that the truth matters. That you don’t take shortcuts or play by your own set of rules. And success doesn’t count unless you earn it fair and square. We learned about gratitude and humility — that so many people had a hand in our success, from the teachers who inspired us to the janitors who kept our school clean. And we were taught to value everyone’s contribution and treat everyone with respect.” — Michelle Obama

9. “I realized the difference wasn’t one of intelligence or drive. The difference was opportunity.” — Julian Castro

10. “We simply can’t afford to give the reins of government to someone who will double down on trickle-down.” — Bill Clinton

11. “The Bain way may bring your firm the highest profits, but it is not the way to lead our country from the highest office.” — Joe Biden

12. “Mitt Romney, quite simply, doesn’t get it… I don’t think Governor Romney meant any harm. I think he’s a good guy. He just has no idea how good he’s had it.” — Julian Castro

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