Tonight, former President Bill Clinton took to the floor of the Democratic National Convention to deliver a long, meandering speech light on rhetoric, long on word count, and short on facts. The speech will provide rich fodder for fact checkers the rest of the evening, and it ought to; its essential theme is that Republicans are responsible for everything nasty in the universe, and Democrats are responsible for everything great – but that both he and President Obama want to reach across the aisle.
But the note of confidence in Obama was not in Clinton’s voice. His lines were littered with hedgings: “I think the President’s plan is better than the Romney plan.” And more importantly, “President Obama started with a much weaker economy than I did. No President – not me or any of my predecessors could have repaired all the damage in just four years. But conditions are improving and if you’ll renew the President’s contract you will feel it.”
In other words, give him more time.