Bill Clinton – Democratic National Convention Address 2004

11 November 2017
William Jefferson Clinton 2004 Democratic National Convention Address delivered 26 July 2004, Fleet Center, Boston Hillary Clinton: I am very optimistic about this election because I think I know a great leader when I see one. And so does America. In 1992 and 1996, Americans chose a President who left our country in better shape than when he took office. And he still spends his days working to empower the powerless; to promote racial, religious, and ethnic reconciliation; to inspire young people to citizen service; and to bring life-saving medicines to people living with HIV-AIDS throughout the world. He showed Democrats how to win again and so will John Kerry. Please welcome the 42nd President of the United States, Bill Clinton! * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Bill Clinton: Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you. Calm down! Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Ladies and gentlemen, I am honored to be here with you — I am honored to share this podium with my Senator, Hillary Rodham Clinton, and I wanna thank the people of New York for giving the best public servant in my family a chance to continue serving the public. Thank you. I am also — I’m gonna say that again, in case you didn’t hear it: I’m honored to be here tonight, and I wanna thank the people of New York for giving Hillary a chance to continue to serve in public life. I am very proud of her, and we are both very grateful to all of you, especially my good friends from Arkansas, for giving me the chance to serve in the White House for eight years. I am honored to share this night with President Carter, for whom I worked in 1976 and who has inspired the world with his work for peace, democracy, and human rights. I am honored to share it with Al Gore, my friend and my partner for eight years, who played such a large role in building the prosperity and peace that we left America in 2000. And Al Gore, as he showed again tonight, demonstrated incredible patriotism and grace under pressure. He is the living embodiment of the principle that every vote counts, and this year we’re gonna make sure they’re all counted in every state in America. My friends, after three conventions as a candidate or a President, tonight I come to you as a citizen, returning to the role that I have played for most of my life; as a foot soldier in our fight for the future as we nominate in Boston a true New England patriot for President. Now this state, who gave us in other times of challenge John Adams and John Kennedy, has given us John Kerry, a good man, a great senator, a visionary leader. And we are all here to do what we can to make him the next President of the United States. My friends, we are constantly being told that America is deeply divided. But all Americans value freedom and faith and family. We all honor the service and sacrifice of our men and women in uniform in Iraq, Afghanistan, and throughout the world. We all want good jobs, good schools, health care, safe streets, a clean environment. We all want our children to grow up in a secure America, leading the world toward a peaceful and prosperous future. Our differences are in how we can best achieve these things in a time of unprecedented change. Therefore, we Democrats will bring to the American people this year a positive campaign, arguing not who’s a good or a bad person, but what is the best way to build the safe and prosperous world our children deserve. The 21st century is marked by serious security threats, serious economic challenges, and serious problems, from AIDS to global warming to the continuing turmoil in the Middle East. But it also full of amazing opportunities — to create millions of new jobs, and clean energy, and biotechnology; to restore our manufacturing base and reap the benefits of the global economy through our diversity and our commitment to decent labor and environmental standards for people all across the world; and to create a world where we can celebrate our religious, our racial, our ethnic, our tribal differences because our common humanity matters most of all. To build that kind of world, we must make the right choices, and we must have a President who will lead the way. Democrats and Republicans have very different and deeply felt ideas about what choices we should make. They’re rooted in fundamentally different views of how we should meet our common challenges at home and how we should play our role in the world. We Democrats want to build a world and an America of shared responsibilities and shared benefits. We want a world with more global cooperation, where we act alone only when we absolutely have to. We think the role of government should give — should be to give people the tools and to create the conditions to make the most of their own lives, and we think everybody should have that chance.
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