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Michelle to Barack: I’ve Got Your Back

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First Lady Michelle Obama gets excited during a campaign stop in Centennial June 20. (credit: CBS)

First Lady Michelle Obama gets excited during a campaign stop in Centennial June 20. (credit: CBS)

Written by Dominic Dezzutti

First Lady Michelle Obama was the headliner of Tuesday night’s speeches at the 2012 Democratic National Convention. Ironically, she followed the keynote speech, which usually is the headliner.

But hey, this is Michelle Obama. You don’t have The Who open for ZZ Top, do you?

One of the themes that the First Lady began her speech with was that “Barack has your back.” Well, with a rousing speech that likely appealed to many undecided voters looking for an emotional connection, it was clear that the First Lady had the President’s back.

Michelle Obama’s speech was not meant to set any new policies or serve as an argument in a debate. It was meant to make a connection to the voters who were watching that were looking for the human element in politics. That is not the majority of voters, but there are more voters like that than the pure policy voters would like to admit.

On that pure human connection level, Michelle Obama scored very well.

However, not every point was perfect when put to a common sense test. I admired her way of describing her early relationship with Barack Obama as one that was struggling economically.

Both the Romneys and the Obamas have tried to convince American voters that they too started their lives in apartments decorated in early garage sale. But however humble the beginnings for both of these couples; I still think it is a stretch to try to convince Americans that they can understand the struggles of the middle class.

In Michelle’s case, statistically there are simply not that many couples that graduated from Ivy League undergraduate schools, and then Harvard Law School, that stay mired in the “middle class” for very long. I am sure it happens, but it is simply very rare.

But the meat of the speech dealt with Michelle’s opinion of her husband and her role as a mom. On both of those points, the First Lady scored major points. First, she kept herself grounded well as she admitted she was afraid in 2008 that winning the Presidency may change her husband and negatively affect her kids.

She then used the remainder of her speech to affirm that the Presidency has not changed her husband’s character, it has only revealed it. She went on to affirm how her husband enjoys dinner with the family on a regular basis, staying involved with the regular issues his two daughters experience in school.

Whether or not President Obama’s attendance record for sitting down for dinner with his family is as strong as Michelle relayed, the point was made to the undecided voters out there that Barack Obama is a regular dad, and a regular guy.

Cynics out there realize that no one who gets elected President of the United States is a regular guy. However, that point is unimportant to the voters out there who are still on the fence, looking for a certain intangible quality from a candidate to sway them before November 6th.

For those voters, Michelle Obama’s speech hit a variety of strong points and tugged at the exact right heart strings.

The speakers on Wednesday and Thursday can try to appeal to the heads of voters, but thanks to First Lady Michelle Obama, voters hearts were spoken to very well on Tuesday.About The Blogger

- Dominic Dezzutti, producer of the Colorado Decides debate series, a co-production of CBS4 and Colorado Public Television, looks at the local and national political scene in his CBSDenver.com blog. Read new entries here every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Dezzutti writes about federal, state and local matters and how our elected leaders are handling the issues important to Colorado. Dezzutti also produces the Emmy winning Colorado Inside Out, hosted by Raj Chohan, on Colorado Public Television.

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