Thursday, July 08, 2004

Is There a Decade of New Hope for The Whitehouse or Just Us Stuck in the Middle Again?



John Edwards' "Two Americas" stump speech is a powerful rallying cry to take our country back. As he said at a campaign stop in December:

“Today, under George W. Bush, there are two Americas, not one: One America that does the work, another America that reaps the reward. One America that pays the taxes, another America that gets the tax breaks. One America that will do anything to leave its children a better life, another America that never has to do a thing because its children are already set for life. One America -- middle-class America - whose needs Washington has long forgotten, another America - narrow-interest America - whose every wish is Washington's command. One America that is struggling to get by, another America that can buy anything it wants, even a Congress and a President.”

“I've been fighting this fight my whole life. For 20 years, I have sat in courtrooms across from these people. I have been an advocate for families and their children against armies of lawyers. I've won most of those battles. In the Senate, I fought for the Patients' Bill of Rights, against big HMOs, against big insurance companies. I fought to bring down prescription drug costs for every American, against big drug companies. I fought to do something about drug company advertising on TV when others weren't willing to do it. I fought to create energy independence in this country.”

“I believe the backbone of the American economy is the hard work, determination, and ingenuity of the middle class, not the insiders. I believe the way to grow the economy is to grow and strengthen the middle class, not shrink its size and add to its burdens. I believe the way a rich nation gets richer is by giving all its citizens the chance to get richer, not by only helping those like me who've already succeeded beyond our wildest dreams. I believe the way to create new wealth is by rewarding work and responsibility, not coddling the privileged and going soft on executives, accountants, and analysts who squander other people's money.”

“For every man and woman who is worried about paying their bills; for every child who needs health care and a strong school to go to, and for every American who waits for the 1st and the 15th of every month -- together we will end this era of anxiety. We will replace the crass politics of greed and the current politics of rage with a new politics of opportunity.”
(As Prepared, Des Moines, IA, 12/29/03)

John Kerry adds on:

“In the next 120 days and in the administration that follows, John Edwards and I will be fighting for the America we love,” Kerry said. “We'll be fighting to give the middle class a voice by providing good paying jobs and affordable health care. We'll be fighting to make America energy independent. We'll be fighting to build a strong military and lead strong alliances, so young Americans are never put in harm’s way because we insisted on going it alone.” (As Prepared, JohnKerry.com, 7/6/04)

The question remains: Will they remember what they said and the passion they once embraced?

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