Here it is in a nutshell:I liked Bill Clinton’s speech at the Democratic Convention. And even worse, I couldn’t help liking the man who delivered it.
Now get this straight: I never voted for Bill Clinton, I never approved of him as President, and I always thought of him as a sell-out for supporting NAFTA and welfare reform. I certainly do not think of him as a true progressive any more than I do President Obama. But you’ve got to hand it to him: The man knows how to COMMUNICATE. More than any other living politician, Clinton knows how to take a complicated message (i.e., Obama’s health care reform plan) and SELL IT in a way that ordinary, uneducated rubes in places like Arkansas and Alabama can understand. He also knows how to play upon the audience’s emotions and aspirations better than any American politician since Ronald Regan.
If only Obama were as adept as communicating his own vision for the country. The problem is that, while Obama is a great speaker, he is a horrible communicator and persuader. He probably saved the country from a depression through his prudent governance after the economic meltdown in 2008, and he definitely offers a more reasonable economic plan for the future than Romney, who sincerely believes that every problem the country faces can be solved by giving millionaires and billionaires more tax breaks . But Obama never effectively “sold” any of his policies to the American people, and as a result most Americans don’t really believe that he has done much of anything in the past four years.
If he wins in November, Obama might want to consider working on his poor communications skills. And who knows: maybe Bill Clinton will even give him a 20% discount on charisma lessons.