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August 28th, 2008
04:52 PM ET

What can Obama say to get your vote?

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(PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Even for a guy who's used to delivering impressive speeches, tonight is big.

Barack Obama will address 80,000 people at Denver's Invesco Field as the first African-American nominee ever for a major political party, on the 45th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I have a dream" speech. No pressure.

Millions more will watch him on TV – and to many of them, Obama is still an unknown. The Democratic nominee has said there are two things he wants to accomplish tonight – to make the choice between himself and John McCain as clear as possible and to tell America what he stands for.

Obama wrote a first draft of his speech longhand last week, and then worked on it with his speechwriters. He looked to previous convention speeches from people like John Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton for inspiration.

Friends say Obama has become sensitive to criticism that his speeches lack content. So look for specifics on how he'll fix the country's problems tonight. But he also must connect with his audience on an emotional level. There will be lots of time for policy. Tonight he's got to make people want to vote for him. To do that, he's got to touch their feelings.

Here’s my question to you: What can Barack Obama say tonight to convince you to vote for him?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Steven from Hendersonville, Tennessee writes:
All he has to do to solidify my vote is get through his speech without using the phrases "My Friends" or "five and a half years in a POW camp" more than 20 times. America is getting tired of the McCain sentence construction that goes something like this: "My friends, noun, verb, five and half years of captivity." Being a war hero and having leadership skills are two different things.

Tim from Montana writes:
In order to get my vote, Barack Obama has to tell me, in plain terms that a non-Harvard grad can understand, what exactly he is going to change and how soon his so called great policies will help my family. I don’t want a motivational speech or Sunday sermon; we all know the Bush/McCain Republicans screwed up but that doesn’t necessarily mean I am voting for Obama.

Nick from New Orleans writes:
Jack, I only worry about one thing with Obama: I worry how he'll stand up against the Putins and Ahmadinejads and Chavezes of the world. I'd really like to hear him address that. But I'll vote for him anyway. How's that expression go? No way, no how, No McCain.

Brian from Moscow, Idaho writes:
Jack, Obama could tell me that he was going to deport my family to Pakistan and I'd still vote for him over McCain. After all, McCain and his love for war and the draft would probably mean I'd end up in the Middle East anyways!

Marty writes:
I think if he uses a mixture of what Hillary and Bill Clinton said and drive it home with a little Biden commonality, he will win over independent voters. McCain already handed Obama my vote with his lack of substance and negative ads.

Karolyn from Scottsdale, Arizona writes:
Absolutely nothing. In four or eight more years when he gains some depth and experience in the trenches, I will consider it.

Ryan writes:
If he announces that Stephen Colbert will be his Secretary of State, I will vote for him.


Filed under: Barack Obama • DNC Convention
soundoff (150 Responses)
  1. Ernie Jameson

    For a party that complains about the amount of houses one has ,to spend all that extra money just to satisfy one mans "Choosen one" complex ,shows just how elitist and outta touch they are with middle america. This wasteful spending is only a small hint of what would come if the "Choosen One" would be elected.

    Ernie
    Strongsville,Ohio

    August 28, 2008 at 1:54 pm |
  2. Terri-Ann, Dallas, TX

    He has already said all there is to be said. He already has it.

    August 28, 2008 at 1:57 pm |
  3. Jenny Rome Ga

    Jack,
    The man has my vote already.

    August 28, 2008 at 1:59 pm |
  4. Jeremy

    As far as I see it, Obama won my vote by being the Democrat.

    August 28, 2008 at 1:59 pm |
  5. Dave P.

    Jack,

    He doesn't even need to show up tonight and he will get my vote. Although that would ruin my Obama party I am hosting.

    Dave
    Iowa City, Iowa

    August 28, 2008 at 1:59 pm |
  6. Mike, Syracuse NY

    That he is giving up his presidential campaign and running for dogcatcher instead.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:01 pm |
  7. BillD

    All he had to say was he'd end the war in Iraq. He's had my vote since then. Upon further review, he's on the right side of a lot of things I believe in.

    Bill D.
    Champaign, IL

    August 28, 2008 at 2:01 pm |
  8. Aaron in Carolina Beach

    Nothing all Obama has to do for me is not be republican.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:01 pm |
  9. Tillie, Manassas VA

    Barack, you had me at "tax cut".

    August 28, 2008 at 2:03 pm |
  10. Jad in NH

    He's already won me and millions and millions of my friends over. I fear the things he could say tonight that might win over the masses will not be said because Senator Obama is a gentleman. If I could direct his speech it would include comments on McCain's saber rattling toward Russia and the threat of WWIII, the threat of a draft should another war break out, the many "no" votes cast by McCain on legislation that would benefit veterans, the continued tax breaks for businesses that move our jobs overseas that will continue or increase under a McCain presidency, the incentive for employers to drop health insurance as a benefit under President McCain which will leave people with a $5,000 tax credit for a $12,000 policy and, lastly, the concern many have over the state of McCain's mental fitness to serve as president. He exhibits symptoms of senile dementia and is reported to have outbursts of temper consistent with PTSD. Senator Obama, of course, will not mention any of these things because he is hoping to unify and not divide, unlike the other party.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:04 pm |
  11. haim cohen

    i think he has to tell us what he is going to due
    and how he is going to due it. .in simple english

    August 28, 2008 at 2:04 pm |
  12. Mike Cassidy, Cleveland, Ohio

    Obama doesn't need to say anything more, I've been a proud supporter since April 2007.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:05 pm |
  13. Tom

    He already said it when he wrote "Audacity of Hope." And "Dreams from My Father" wasn't so bad, either. ;- )

    Tom
    Silverdale, Wa

    August 28, 2008 at 2:05 pm |
  14. Ron K.

    Hi Jack:

    Nothing really. He is the only obvious chioce.

    Ron San Diego

    August 28, 2008 at 2:05 pm |
  15. Richard, Syracuse, NY

    as a Disabled Vet who doesn't even own an Outhouse let alone 7 houses he already has my vote basically because I am tired of Sen McCain using the Carl Rove tactics of lie after lie after lie. This country works BEST when we are challenged to do better, not beaten down and told to hide under the bed.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:05 pm |
  16. Mark - Asheville, NC

    Nothing. He is not Presidential material. I can remember watching those who were, lead the country. No remote comparison.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:05 pm |
  17. Larry in Florida

    Ive been thinking, and thinking, and thinking Jack. Haven't been able to think of a thing he could say to get my vote. Maybe he could try and buy my vote promising me a $1,000 incentive rebate. After all, a $300 rebate promise helped put Bush in office. Whether people want to admit it or not, alot of us can be bought. The power of money never goes away.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:05 pm |
  18. Raffaello

    Barack Obama already has my vote – anyone who seriously entertains the idea of voting for McCain or of not voting at all is seriously out of touch with the realities of America today. If we do not elect this man we will go down in history and in the eyes of the world as the American generation that finally proved to everyone that we really are as thick as our detractors have accused us of being.

    We are the electorate that has put George Bush in office twice – the idea that Obama is being held to a higher "electability" standard is preposterous and infuriating. At the end of the day, what you are looking at is good, old-fashioned racism. Wake up, fellow Americans!

    August 28, 2008 at 2:06 pm |
  19. Stacy from Rainy Loudoun, VA

    Jack, as long as his head is not spinning around, speaking Latin backwards, and spitting pea soup…he’s got my vote.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:07 pm |
  20. lou

    I would like to hear him admit that our addiction to foreign oil has become a national security problem. Then I would like him to lay out a plan for an energy revolution that calls on Americans to conserve while detailing other steps he'll take to get us on the road to alternative energy.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:07 pm |
  21. Spencer from VA

    He can be mute and still get my vote Jack. John McCain can't do that.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:07 pm |
  22. Mac in Truro Nova Scotia

    He has already got my vote and has had it for a long time now.
    Now Jack, my question for you–When is CNN going to wake up and give you your own show?

    August 28, 2008 at 2:08 pm |
  23. Delbert Lewis

    Montgomery, Alabama

    I've already decided to vote for Obama. We've had one revolution to get rid of a king and I just can't see King John (The Unknowing" succedding King Geroge "The Arrogant"!

    August 28, 2008 at 2:08 pm |
  24. Elliott in DC

    I will balance the budget by vetoing any pork that crosses my desk instead of raising taxes.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:09 pm |
  25. Katiec Pekin, IL

    Jack,
    I have been convinced that Barack Obama is our only choice
    since day one, so what he says tonight will just be icing
    on the cake.
    I do not understand those who say they do not know him
    as he has bared his soul, thoughts, ideas and hopes for
    our country many times.
    I think tonight will prove to many that he is our right
    choice. How could it not.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:10 pm |
  26. Tom, The Heart of Democracy, Avon, Maine

    He can tell me that Bush, Cheney, Rove and others responsible for duping America into the disastrous invasion of Iraq will answer to Justice once the Justice Department is restored.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:10 pm |
  27. Russ - Johnston, IA

    He can say he will secure the southern border with a double fence, as was planned, and get it done within a year or 2; he can say we'll put more border patrol agents and military on the southern border to stop the Mexican police/military and the drug cartels from crossing our border unchecked; and he can say there will be no amnesty, let alone health care coverage for the 20+ million – who knows how many – illegal immigrants already in this country. If either one of these knuckleheads(Obama OR McCain) has the guts to protect our country at that border and keep illegal immigrants OUT of our country, they have my vote.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:10 pm |
  28. Allan Hanson Cameron Park Ca.

    Only that as unqualified as the right wing nuts claim, he is far and away a better chioice that McSame.
    This country can barely survive the mess made by this Administration let alone another 4 years of destroying the country.
    any change is better, Clinton would been best but you defeated her.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:11 pm |
  29. Deb, Allentown, PA

    Jack, I'm already convinced. It didn't take much. And the inanity that comes out of the McCain camp on almost a daily basis – the negative ads, killing Iranians with cigarettes, the POW card played ad infinitum, his advisor on healthcare saying that there are no uninsured Americans, etc. – further solidifies my vote for Obama and makes me all the more eager to ensure that McCain is not elected. For the first time in my life, I've contributed our hard-earned cash, and am donating my time as a volunteer for the Obama campaign.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:11 pm |
  30. Jed in Redding, CA

    Sorry, Jack. Barack Obama has my vote and he has had my vote for the last 18 months and along with mine he has the votes of countIess millions of Americans. In fact I am quite convinced that if the election were held tomorrow, Barack Obama would win and handily at that. The question then becomes what can Obama say to lose my vote, or someone elses. And while there may be some that teeter on the brink between Obama and McCain, I just can't see how we can swallow another four more years of George W. Bush, even if it's dissolved in a 90% solution. Unless he bows down and worships the devil right there in Invesco Field, I just don't see him losing my vote.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:12 pm |
  31. Rose

    Obama can speak all he wants to but I will never vote for Obama and it is not because he is an African American, I just don't believe anything he says, he gives great speeches but there is no substance in his stance. He makes a lot of commintments to the people but he is not telling us how he plans to do any of those things. Lastly, I don't like his tax policy, we will all be paying a lot more if he is elected.

    Rose
    AZ

    August 28, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  32. Charles, Lansing, MI

    He doesn't have to say a thing to get my vote. John McCain has already said plenty to guaranty it for Obama.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  33. Roger Cyr

    Experience in politics does not mean you are going to be an effective commander-in-chief; Just look at what Bush accomplished and McCain I believe is even more dangerous with is short fuse. What you need is leadership, intelligence and common sense , all characteristics that have made him a celebrity. How did he become a celebrity so quickly and what is wrong in becoming a celebrity. I always thought Ronald Reagan was one. Americans should be proud to finally see a charismatic individual with leadership qualities that has not been seen in a hell of a long time.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  34. Jennifer, Little Rock Arkansas

    To get my vote, Barack Obama has to show me that he's serious about taking on McCain. Up until now, I feel like he's been spending all of his time/energy uniting the Democratic Party. Well, guess what, Barack? Hillary can do that all by herself and she showed on Tuesday that she's a classy lady. Let her worry about her supporters who are threatening to vote for McCain. You need to show me that you're serious about being commander-in-chief, that a war in Georgia doesn't scare you and that you have an exit strategy for Iraq. Experience isn't everything – I happen to believe that human beings can learn. But only if they're focused. Zero in on foreign policy and you'll convince me in November.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  35. Candice, St Francois County, Missouri

    I am Scottish, married to a US citizen and am not yet eligible to vote. I AM, however, an interested observer and am regularly reduced to Homer Simpson-like slapping of my forehead with regard to tactics and slandering of and by , the Candidates . I NEED to know PLEASE – Is John McCain qualified to be President based on his place of birth and not just on his heroic War Record ? If he isn't – then why the hell is he still up there?

    August 28, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  36. Peter Fairview, Texas

    That ship has already sailed Jack. There is absolutely nothing that Obama can promise, say, insinuate or dream of that will sway my vote his way. Obama needs some good history and remarkable achievements in his life to do that. Being a Jr. Senator with little or no past just doesn't get it done. Having a Vice President like Biden who is heavily tied to the credit card industry is not helping. Maybe in another 8 years he can try it again with a better VP.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:13 pm |
  37. Buster in Poughkeepsie, NY

    Barack pretty much had me at hello, but if he points at me, winks and tells me how sweet I look in my toga tonight, he's got this thing wrapped up as far as I'm concerned.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:14 pm |
  38. Patricia F Pine Plains NY

    He's got my vote.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:15 pm |
  39. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    I'm running for President of the Democratic Party against John McCain and the George Bush Republican Party.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:15 pm |
  40. Deb- OK

    He doesn't have to say anything to me. I'm there for him. Ask me what the Republicans said to me? Lies, Corruption, not wanting to help the troops, veterans, schools, THE PEOPLE, etc. Get it.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:15 pm |
  41. Dan, Maryland

    Although he's already got my vote, if he didn't, I would want to hear in straight terms that he will not raise taxes on familes making less than $100,000 a year and that he will reinstate the pay as you go system that was in place under the Clinton administration which lead us to have a surplus. It's time to stop pushing our mistakes onto our grandchildren. Let's take some responsibility now so they won't be owned by foreign debt.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:16 pm |
  42. Rob, San Diego

    If he said that his top priority as President was to balance the budget, pay down the national debt, and limit the size and power of the Federal Government, I'd vote for him. Somehow, I doubt he will say that though...

    August 28, 2008 at 2:17 pm |
  43. Kevin, Ohio

    Senator Obama has already said enough to convince me on voting for him in Novemeber. The only thing left of him is to hammer his message in tonight's speech whcih will resonates among voters.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:17 pm |
  44. Linda in Florida

    He doesn't have to say anything to convince me. I am counting the days until I can cast my vote for him. I am worried though that there are still a great many people who won't vote for him simply because of his race, or because they believe emails they receive about him being Muslim, etc. I cannot wait to watch is acceptance speech tonight!

    August 28, 2008 at 2:49 pm |
  45. Marc, Toronto

    Being from Canada I obviously can't vote but I imagine there are many voters that would be exstatic if Barack Obama named Hillary Clinton the presumptive Secretary of State. It wouldn't hurt to tell voters how he plans to use Bill Clinton and Bill Richardson to secure the latino vote.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:49 pm |
  46. Nuwan Sam

    He has already said what he has to say so I do not think his speech today will have any impact on me. I just do not like to be sold into talks. He has not shown that he can do what he says. But as Bill Clinton said yesterday he was in the same boat but then he delivered. I just have to take a risk and vote for Obama which I may end up doing. If he deliver what he speak, he will be one of the greatest president this country had. I think many Americans thinks the way I think too.
    – Nuwan from Houston, TX

    August 28, 2008 at 2:51 pm |
  47. W. W. -TX

    Nothing. The people that haven't got the message by now never will get it.

    W from Tx.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:51 pm |
  48. Russ in PA

    He can't win my vote. He can, however, win my respect by telling us all to "vote for Ron Paul"...

    August 28, 2008 at 2:51 pm |
  49. Karen - Nashville

    I hope Obama has the courage not to tell us that everything will be perfect under his presidency. Honestly would be a nice change.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:52 pm |
  50. Gigi in Alabama

    He doesn't have to say a thing new to convince me. Joe Biden and his son Beau did that for me last night.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:52 pm |
  51. Connie

    Jack, He has had my vote from the first, but don't tell him I want him to keep fighting for my vote by pissing off McSenile.Thats the best part of this election.
    Connie from Indiana

    August 28, 2008 at 2:52 pm |
  52. Paul S. Columbia, SC

    The Clinton camp delivered a magnificent dramatic performance for Obama. Now we will just have to wait to find out what the Clintons' "end" of this negotiated deal with the Obama camp was when it finally leaks out. The Clintons never do anything out of the goodness of their hearts, ever.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:53 pm |
  53. Gord From Boston

    Barack Obama can tell me that he not so self assured to the point of arrogance and feels that the Presidency is a daunting responsibility that he will accept graciuosly with the humility to realize that he does not have all the answers or experience and will seek the guidance of others like Joe Biden.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:54 pm |
  54. Bertha doucet

    jack,nothing obama said to nite that will change my mind about him.right now i am undecided.obama have two months to convince me that he would be a good president Houston Texas

    August 28, 2008 at 2:54 pm |
  55. Stan, Liberty, Mo

    Obama should call McCain the puppet he is. Karl Rove tells him to remind people Obama's black, so McCain says "he's untested" or "we don't know him". Special interests tell McCain to give them tax cuts, so he says "we need to give oil companies incentives to drill in new areas". He's gone from Maverick to Marionette in just 8 years. What will he be in 4 more? I'd rather not find out.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:56 pm |
  56. Susan from Greenfield, Wi.

    He can shift back to the left instead of his drift to the middle. His original course is what got him here, and his shift to the middle is why he is losing ground. He needs to point out how vulnerable we are to more off shore drilling as Gustav is getting ready to plow right into those oil platforms. At the same time another new storm is taking aim at the Florida coast, which is where McCain wants to drill. Obama needs to pound home the point that the old have got to go far away from us, very far away. It is time to move forward in a new direction for our own good. He needs to say it like it is. That the powers that be do not care about this nation, they only care about themselves.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:57 pm |
  57. Paul S. Columbia, SC

    Nothing. He has already said way too much.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  58. CJ

    Senator Obama is the only clear choice if we as American's want to see our country continue in it's great tradition. What's sad are the few that have not been able to get over the fact that your next President of the United States will be African American. We need to stop dancing around the fact that alot of people in this country are not ready and would rather continue down a road of hopelessness under the DNC leadership.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  59. HLNJRII Mississippi

    The same as he been saying all along. Insurance, Bring th troops home. And get this country off life support. Bush & Cheney have almost kill this country.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  60. Rosalynd Florida

    Obama could come out to mile high tonight wave then say “fired up ready to go” and leave the stage and he gets my vote. I have done my homework and Obama is right on the issues domestic and foreign. I already know what I need to know to vote for Obama.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  61. Joe, Clinton Ma.

    He has already said it. He has my vote. But I would love to have him say he would Outlaw the GOP since they have screwed our Country these last 8 years, but I know he can't, so let me have my dream.

    August 28, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  62. Phillis an American in Germany

    Hi Jack,
    He already has my vote. For those that are undecided all Obama has to do is not say anything and let McBush continue to run his mouth. The smart people will make a quick decision for Obama after listening to McBushes craziness.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:00 pm |
  63. Frank, Quebec

    Jack,
    After reading most of the comments in that thread, either people are already voting for Obama or they say they will vote for him only if he vows to give America another 4 years of Bush/Cheney policies, which means adopting the Republican platform in it's entirety like John McCain, plus sending them a tousand dollars check in the mail...

    August 28, 2008 at 3:00 pm |
  64. Peter

    Only if he defines what his "Change" is.. I think that people have reached the point where they want details not "if this or if that".

    Some people believe in dreams however most prefer facts.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:00 pm |
  65. Lisa in GA.

    Jack, after 8 years of Bush and the repubs,,, all he has to do is breathe and I will vote for him!

    August 28, 2008 at 3:01 pm |
  66. Phyllis/PA

    Ok Jack,
    Jack,

    Many of the people who have responded to your question could run for president in the next election. Why? They all have as much if not more experience than Obama has!

    The country is faced with serious problems and it is too risky to place my vote on hope. The only way Obama could have gotten my vote was if he was Hillary's VP. He would then gain the experience that he lacks and run and win the presidency. If he was not so ambitious, Obama could have given the democratic party 16 years of leadership,

    Phyllis Media, PA

    August 28, 2008 at 3:01 pm |
  67. Terry

    Jack,

    At this point, I don't really care what more he says - I've heard enough to know Obama has a vision, moral character, hopeful enthusiasm, and integrity. That's a very good start, and more than we've had in this county for many, many years.

    Sometimes you have to take a chance on the "unknown" because the "known" is way too frightening a reality. We've had young, inexperienced leaders before – and surprizingly, they usually worked out to our great advantage. The costs are cataclysmic if we continue to listen to all this Republican hypocrisy. I cannot stomach it one more day.

    Terry
    Syracuse, NY

    August 28, 2008 at 3:02 pm |
  68. Sid---Texas

    Jack,
    The best thing Obama can say tonight is that there will be no secrets in my and Mr. Biden's administration as for as the nation's general business is handled ,as long as the nation's security is not compromised. Also, I will not let any one corporation or organization influence how our decisions are made solely for their own benefit. I will also place tough limits on all lobbyists. I and Mr. Biden will do our utmost to live up to the oath we both shall commit to at our swearing in...........Thus said, he has my vote.....

    August 28, 2008 at 3:02 pm |
  69. DT Arizona

    That he will, quit pandering to illegal aliens rights groups, that he will enforce current immigration laws and deport all these illegal aliens back to Mexico, he will bring all of our troops home from Iraq immediately, he will undo all of Bush's tax cuts for the rich, he will return economic prosperity to this nation and lastly...he will do something that Bush could never do..."Restore Dignity to The White House".

    August 28, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  70. Roger

    Jack, he needs to explain why withdrawing troops from Iraq a year ago ensuring defeat was the right vote but his plan to send three more divisions to Afghanistan is OK. Sounds like playing politics with our security and the lives of our soldiers.

    Roger
    Chicago

    August 28, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  71. Allen in Avondale, PA

    The "3:00 AM" attack ad brings up a few questions. Will McCain be awake at 10:00 PM to answer the call or will the call forwarding kick in and have George W. Bush or Dick Cheney answer? Now that is scary!

    August 28, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  72. Steve from Hendersonville, Tenn.

    All he has to do to solidify my vote is get through his speech without using the phrases "My Friends" or "five and a half years in a POW camp" more than 20 times. America is getting tired of the McCain sentence construction that goes something like this: "My friends, noun, verb, five and half years of captivity." Being a war hero and having leadership skills are two different things. McCain earned the first title 40 years ago, but he is way past having the capacity to learn how to lead in the 21st Century. The Cold War is over, and McCain should be a good Cold Warrior and just fade away.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  73. Tony from Torrington

    Not a thing from his lying mouth would ever convince me to vote for him. His past is his legacy and it is his past that will destroy his presidency. He is not the man this country needs in a position of power. Our forefathers and generations of Americans fought and died to make this country great, not to turn it into a socialist government where money is taken from those who work hard and have it re-distributed to those who don't deserve it or manage not to work for it. Social programs for the needy are important and should be funded by taxpayers, but a socialist government is quite another thing.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  74. Tim - Montana

    In order to get my vote, Barack Obama has to tell me, in plain terms that a non Harvard grad can understand, what exactly he is going to change and how soon his so called great policies will help my family. I don’t want a motivational speech or Sunday sermon; we all know the Bush/McCain Republicans screwed up but that doesn’t necessarily mean I am voting for Obama because I'd rather vote for someone than vote against someone.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:05 pm |
  75. Terry in Hanover County

    He needs to stick to a consistent platform, quit playing defense to McCain and the GOP's attacks, and run with the ball all the way to Election Day.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:05 pm |
  76. Bill, Quarryville, PA

    I am voting for Obama be cause of what Mccain is saying and his willingness to follow in president Bush's footsteps. I am too scared to vote for Mccain be cause if we have another four years of what we in had the last eight years, this country will be in a depression instead of a recession. I am tired of seeing the wealthy pay a less percent tax and have more tax loopholes then the average citizen. In order for this to change for me I have a better chance with Obama then Mccain.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:05 pm |
  77. Sam, NC

    He didn't have to say anything. Just him NOT being a REPUBLICAN is enough at this point. But what he does say is very good and makes me want to vote for him.

    John McCain is not a bad guy...he's just caught up in the same old Republican crap that has been going on for years. Sorry, I can't support their views.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:06 pm |
  78. Geoff, CHICAGO

    The only thing obama could say is that the governments only business is securing our safety, from foreign or domestic. Everything else could be better taken care of by the private sector if the government would allow it. Our government was not created to take care of everyones needs, but to allow us the freedom to take care of ourselves. OBAMA, cut the government in half!

    August 28, 2008 at 3:07 pm |
  79. Pat, Greenville, Ohio

    He doesn't have to say anything, Putin has already said it. People just have to connect the dots.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:07 pm |
  80. Vinnie Vino

    Jack,
    He can say, I have an October surprise for my ticket. After realizing I made an error in judgement and my poll numbers falling in key swing states I am going to correct my error of picking Joe Biden for my VP and replaceing him with Hillary Clinton, what are the odds of this happening...

    C.I., New York

    August 28, 2008 at 3:07 pm |
  81. Joe in DE

    HJe already has my vote and will as long as he does not talk abut "Comprehensive" immigration reform whicvh is a Bushism for amnesty without immigration control.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:08 pm |
  82. Jean-Charles Canada

    If I voted in the US election, I would look at the universal health care coverage issue. Obama would get my vote if he promised to implement a universal health coverage ehere all US citizens would be covered for all their medical expenses. This is how we have it in Canada and it is a wonderful system.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:08 pm |
  83. Kel in Auburn, AL

    All he has to say to me is "Hi". Bill Clinton was right. Barack Obama is the right man for this job.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:08 pm |
  84. martin Georgia

    Nothing to me because he will get my vote but the question is what he has to say to all the undecided low income voters! These voters that are still believing in the "fairy-tale of the American Dream" that the republican rhetoric is telling them over and over. The same republican speeches that they are really working they are only helping the working class with their "true family values" while the truth is that they are helping exclusively their wealthy buddies club!

    August 28, 2008 at 3:08 pm |
  85. Ray Lawson from Danville, VA

    He can't say anything that would get my vote.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:09 pm |
  86. Kerry Diehl

    I don't agree with his philosophies and Obama has a long way to go in order to get my vote!! (In all fairness, the same can be said for McCain.)

    Here are just seven things that could help persuade me:

    1. That he will strictly enforce and enhance immigration laws on illegal’s and employers of illegals

    2. Develop a comprehensive border and seaport protection plan against terrorism and drug traffic.

    3. Do away with NAFTA in exchange for “Fair" trade agreements that match import taxes with the corresponding country.

    4. Heavily tax those companies who ship jobs to other countries.

    5. Embrace drilling for oil offshore, Alaska or even in my own backyard if it will help make the US energy independent and stop the 700 billion yearly losses.

    6. Clean up the political process by strictly regulating lobbyists and making all conversations or dealings open to the public

    7. Create a line item veto on new bills to help stop "Pork Barrel" spending.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:09 pm |
  87. Kevin from Massachusetts

    As soon as he didn't say Hillary was not the VP nominee he had me.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:09 pm |
  88. tennisguypitt from Pittsburgh

    He's had my vote since he joined the race, Jack.

    Obama/Biden '08

    August 28, 2008 at 3:10 pm |
  89. Kevin from Massachusetts

    As soon as he didn't say Hillary was the VP nominee, he had me.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:10 pm |
  90. Aaron B.; Champaign, IL

    "Saturday morning cartoons aren't what they used to be."

    August 28, 2008 at 3:11 pm |
  91. V B Boyd

    He already has my vote and I am campaigning to help get him elected.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:11 pm |
  92. David Richards

    Barack Obama doesn't have to say anything more. He got my vote in the primary and he'll get my vote in the general. Too bad that living in Texas I'll be throwing my vote away, but I'm going to cast it anyway.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:11 pm |
  93. Alan O'Mara

    He's already got my vote, from the minute he oppossed the Iraq fiasco.

    The more important question for today is, Who will Karl Rove pick for McCain's running mate ? He's already tried to put a spike into Joe Liberman, can't understane why, & he's pushing Romney.

    When McCain picks Romney later today or tommorow, than we'll know that Rove is still running the country.

    Alan O'Mara, Catskill, NY

    August 28, 2008 at 3:11 pm |
  94. Ron , Berkeley, Ca.

    Barack Obama already has the votes of my household ....
    We despartly need a change in this country .The Republicans , have really screwed things up . It`ll take quite a while to straighten things out , but it can be done , if all the dems get off their duffs and go out and vote come Nov. 4.... NO to John McBush , and his Chicken Hawk Cronies... P.S. , They can have Joe Lieberman ,We don`t need him.
    NO more SMEAR , NO MORE FEAR , NO McBUSH !!!!

    August 28, 2008 at 3:12 pm |
  95. Thomas, NY

    Jack,
    Obama would have to convince me that he had even a vague idea of how to deal with the crisis of Islamic extremism and the revival of the Russian war machine. The odds of that happening are only slightly better than those of anyone convincing me of your abilities as a journalist after having seen the embarassment that was your career in NY local media.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:40 pm |
  96. 18,000,000 plus disenfranchised

    Jack: This race is no longer about Obama or Clinton or even McCain for that matter! It is about teaching the DNC they can't disenfranchise half of America and get by with it! We are going to vote McCain,because,if we don't,they'll be more to come. First we had the hanging Chad ,disenfranchising a District or two in Fl.,now we have entire Staes being silenced through one process or another. We,the voters ,are rebelling against this year's culprit,the DNC,and were voting McCain,in order to symbolically "slap" them back. So quit blaming Hillary,it was Dean, pelosi,and the DNC committee,that did all of this.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:41 pm |
  97. Chryssa

    I can tell by the responses here that EVERYONE not yet voting for Obama hasn't even bothered to click through his website, let alone read the Blurprint for Change. You're all making fools of yourselves, bashing a candidate who has already answered (repeatedly) the questions you're asking.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:42 pm |
  98. DGS, Columbus, OH

    He is retracting Biden as VP, and putting Hillary on as VP! So much for party unity, Barack!

    August 28, 2008 at 3:42 pm |
  99. Conor in Chicago

    "Mr. McCain. I tried my best to run a positive campaign based on the issues that face every American. I tried to take the high road. If elected I will also then take the high road. You Sir have taken the low road blatantly using things I have said or events in my life completely out of context and have allowed your surrogates to out-right lie about me to the public. Taking this country back from the likes of people like you is too important to take the high road when you will not do the same. Tonight sir, THE GLOVES COME OFF!"

    I want that to be the first paragraph. I want the subsequent 5 paragraphs about how completely unfit, unsound, unhonorable McCain is and how his presidency would nearly as criminal as Bush's

    August 28, 2008 at 3:42 pm |
  100. Lynnie, Columbia, Mo..

    A modified diesel engine in every car and a can of Crisco in every tank.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:43 pm |
  101. Kelly, Philadelphia

    I'm an evangelical who has already been won over by Sen. Obama. However, I would like to hear how his policies will help build up the family without enabling those that take advantage of social programs. I want to hear how his faith influences his view on policy regarding foreign relations, economics, and health care since I believe the GOP has missed it on all these issues.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:43 pm |
  102. Claire from Boulder

    As an Obama fan, I'd still vote for him if he told us that he is Elvis the King, and very much alive. Consider the alternative.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:43 pm |
  103. Kimberly

    He has my VOTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now Lets Go Obama/Biden 08

    August 28, 2008 at 3:44 pm |
  104. Rex in Portland, Ore.

    Even if he shows up in Georgia in brand new size zero designer jeans he has my vote.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:44 pm |
  105. Len in Washington

    "My name is Barack Obama and I'm running against John McCain!"

    Settled.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:45 pm |
  106. George

    He doesn't to tell me anything to vote for him. Bill, and Hillary has already asked me, and they got my attention. So stop blaming the Clintons for everything that happens, you seem to forget that things were pretty good under his administration, if you don't I sure see the difference.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:45 pm |
  107. perry jones

    he would have to say he suports the troops and the job they are doing, he will not raise the taxes on the people that suply the jobs for the labor, he will not suport the unions going into small busness, hge would have to sa he would put a fence along the north and south borders and i mean a real fenceas well i would like to here some one tell me they and going to end the afermitive action aginest the white americans
    perry jones
    council bluffs iowa

    August 28, 2008 at 3:46 pm |
  108. Steve in CA

    Jack,
    Obama had my vote when he stated, at the onset of the Bush warcry, that the invasion of Iraq was an ill-advised adventure, that could make the region more dangerous. Who among us wouldn't have preferred to save 4100 US servicemen and womens lives and nearly a trillion taxpayer dollars to have our country safer and better respected around the world?
    To have spent that human and financial capital to overturn one corrupt Iraqi regime – replacing it with one that is much more aligned with Iran (a really dangerous alliance) and a government who recently awarded China access to significant oil reserves is evidence that Sen. Obama deserves our votes.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:46 pm |
  109. john ........................... marlton, nj

    He can say, “Following the inauguration I will immediately withdraw all US troops from Iraq with orders to assist Palestinians retrieve stolen land that is held and occupied by Israeli insurgents. I will declare Israel’s embargo against Palestine as an act of economic terrorism and have the State Department categorize them as a terrorist state. Following the repatriation of Palestine I will order my commanders to retrieve all Israeli nuclear weapons and seize Israel assets from around the world as collateral for restitution to neighboring Arab states they terrorized. In my second week I will demand that the United Nations hold Israel accountable for their actions and have a deck of cards created that identifies the 52 most wanted terrorists from Israel. “

    August 28, 2008 at 3:46 pm |
  110. Don (Ottawa)

    He's got my vote Jack. All he has to do is transfer the words to action.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:47 pm |
  111. Ralph in New York

    Well, Jack he can promise to stop flip-flopping. After standing on a platform for change, he takes a running mate with over thirty years in Congress. You know, I can never trust him nor vote for him.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:47 pm |
  112. Spencer in Los Angeles

    He can do what he has always done, deliver hope to the masses through the promise of the American Dream that is slipping away. He can point out the fallacy that McCain has good judgment, on issue after issue (see John Kerry speech and Joe Biden Speech and Billary Speeches).

    OBAMA 08

    August 28, 2008 at 3:56 pm |
  113. Bill in Albuquerque

    Nothing. He already has my vote.

    August 28, 2008 at 3:56 pm |
  114. don in Naples, Florida

    He could say, "I want to lower the national debt, stop deficit spending. I want to bring responsibility to washington d.c."

    August 28, 2008 at 4:15 pm |
  115. Rose Black

    he need say no more, He has had my vote from the begining. Amen

    August 28, 2008 at 4:16 pm |
  116. Tanya from Georgia

    Barack had my vote after Iowa!

    August 28, 2008 at 4:17 pm |
  117. Dan, NC

    I have insomnia. I am waiting for McCain's convention speech. I know John will deliver for me and millions of others suffering from sleeplessness.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:18 pm |
  118. Wil

    Nothing. He has made it quite clear that John McCain is better then him in every imaginable way. The American people need to realize that we are not voting on the best superstar of 2008 we are voting for the job that requires skill, honesty, and EXPERIENCE! Hillary would have been a much more viable choice for the Democrats, I mean the woman only won Ohio, Florida, Michigan, and Pennslyvania, the battleground states.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:21 pm |
  119. Ann in NH

    Nothing. I was sold a long, long time ago.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:21 pm |
  120. Libe McCauley

    He can say that Hillary can have any job she'd like in the White House if he becomes president

    August 28, 2008 at 4:23 pm |
  121. Barbie in Selma Oregon

    Nothing, he already has my vote. I am very impressed with his choice of VP. It shows he does have good judgement and is more than ready to lead us to a new horizon.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:25 pm |
  122. James

    I don't need convincing. The re-kindling within me of the visionary flame of the Kennedy brothers, President and Senator, by Senator Obaba has had me committed since Day One!
    For me, tonight will be a fanning of the flames.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:26 pm |
  123. Doc from Idaho

    Obama, now has my vote, I was a Hillary supporter! (actually I still am).

    Obama now needs to give us the details of his plans, and after doing so he will also begin to a sway the rest of the Democrats and those idiots that support McCain's approach!

    August 28, 2008 at 4:27 pm |
  124. Mobolaji

    Jack,
    He doesn't have to say anything because i am tired of the 5.7% unemployment rate, 34% increase in gas price, 1 million Americans loosing their home and grocery prices going up everyday. I sure know he won't convince the "PUMA" babies no matter what he says. I just hope Americans can come to their senses and not make the same mistake they made 4yrs ago claiming they don't know what John Kerry is made of or he has no experience.Wake up America.

    Wichita,
    KS

    August 28, 2008 at 4:28 pm |
  125. David Wise, Plant City Florida

    There is nothing he can say, Nothing at all.
    Because he already said it and i am voting for him.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:34 pm |
  126. America

    Obama has to prove he is fit to be commander in chief – so far a lot of nice speeches but no details tell me he didn't do his homework.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:34 pm |
  127. Dawn NC

    There's nothing in the world, he can say to get me to vote for him, if he does get into office, and turns out to be a failure, can we throw him out?

    August 28, 2008 at 4:35 pm |
  128. Sarah Roper

    Obama should spend more time in Southeast. People here want a change too. Talk about more jobs Most of us hate loosing jobs to other countries. These trade agreements hurt the "United" States. Trade agreements help 3rd world countries, but drag our economy down. The US economy must improve if we continue to be a superpower. We all understand that.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  129. Ralph, Corpus Christi

    Simply show up- that's all.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  130. Robert Brugeman

    Jack:

    The only thing he needs to say is "the other guy is a Republican"
    and I'm sold!

    Seriously, as a white middle aged guy who grew up in Cleveland I've watched with interest my own visceral reaction to Barack and wondered if I would be able to look at him in a different way than I looked at Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton, who both seemed so stuck in the past. Over the course of this campaign I've watched and listened and have come to strongly believe that President Obama will be good for this country.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:40 pm |
  131. Terry, NJ

    Too late. To get my vote he would have needed to say "Hillary Clinton is my pick for VP!" O well.. He did seal my vote in voting for McCain or writing in Hillary though. 🙂

    August 28, 2008 at 4:40 pm |
  132. Mary

    That's a good question. Obama can't say anything that would get my vote, because I just don't trust him.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:41 pm |
  133. Mary Wasserman

    I need to hear an assurance that health care issues are going to be resolved and our international image will be restored.

    Mary
    Capitola by the Sea, CA

    August 28, 2008 at 4:42 pm |
  134. Boone

    I am a oilman from Texas, I have voted democratic for 25 years, and i am a lot better off year after year. No recession for my family!

    August 28, 2008 at 4:42 pm |
  135. Wendy in NC

    He has had my vote since these words (Tonight is a particular honor for me because, let's face it, my presence on this stage is pretty unlikely.) from the 2004 Keynote Address. I'm white, 60 and sick about the state of our country today.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:43 pm |
  136. mark kjergaard, SC

    His youth and his vision have already convinced me. Experience dosen't mean a damn thing, Bush Cheney rummy had plenty of experience between them, and they have turned out to be the true evil facing the world.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:44 pm |
  137. Leonard-Trenton, NJ

    Tonght is the night that Obama must touch the spirit of all Americans. He has to introduce himself to the people of this country who do not know him. He must speak to the families who have lost so much over the past 8 years and feel like there is no hope anymore. He must make them believe that he is the man who can give them a glimmer of HOPE that the American family can get the American dream back in closer view. For so long the poor Americans have looked to Washington and the White House for help and support only to get very little or nothing at all. He must convince America that the blueprint for rebuilding this country is being laid out tonight in Denver and that blueprint will become the strong foundation of a new USA as soon as the voters put Joe Biden and him at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:44 pm |
  138. sue

    Give me some substance!

    August 28, 2008 at 4:47 pm |
  139. donna myrtle beach, SC

    I'm an over 60 white woman, and Obama has had my vote since the day he announced. He dosen't have to say anything, he is the future. Our generation gave this counttry Bill Clinton, the inarguably best president of the 20th century, but then we followed with what is undoubtably the worst president in our country's history.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:49 pm |
  140. Jean K Michel, Hempstead, NY

    Bill and Hillary deliver both for Senator Obama and for the good of America the beautiful, that the republicans are trying to DD (dirty and destroy). Listen, if you care enough about this country,here is what you need to do whether you are a republican or a democrat : VOTE FOR CHANGE, VOTE FOR BARACK OBAMA.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  141. Kevin

    Nothing Jack, Obama has my vote. Some people won't vote for him no matter what he says. They will say don't share their values but when asked what values is that they look at you dumbfounded. Inexperienced, scares them, I don't think we've had a first term president with "experience" and scares me is only a code word for black. Excuses, excuses.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  142. Mark from Yuba City, CA

    He could say, " My fellow Americans–Deep down I'm a Ronald Reagan Republican. I believe in low taxes and a small government, i want to empower people–not government–to be all they can be."

    But somehow I doubt I would hear that from him. So I'll hope for the best from John Mccain.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  143. don in Tampa fl

    That's sort of my problem, really – looks like he will say ANYTHING to get my vote. As an independent, this is like hating liver, and being asked to choose between boiled liver and sauteed liver. Which candidate do I dislike the least.

    August 28, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  144. Brooke

    Hi Jack,
    I'll sit on this question until after Senator Obama's speech tonight, and then I'll watch the Republican Convention next week, and then I'll decide who gets my vote.
    Brooke

    August 28, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  145. John in Santa Barbara, CA

    I've changed my mind, I would like Hillary to be my Vice President. Then Obama would get my vote

    August 28, 2008 at 5:31 pm |
  146. Jason

    The only way I would consider voting for Obama THIS year is if he says he and Joe Biden are going to switch places on the ticket.

    If Obama wants me to vote for him in the future he can say he is going to stay in the Senate for another couple terms and actually develop a record....or run for Governor of Illinois to get some legitimate executive experience...or take an "Intro to Macroeconomics" course at a local community college where he can learn that, while increasing taxes on the "rich" sounds good as a populist talking point, it tends to reduce federal revenue overall. I'm not asking him to become so familiar with macroeconomic principles and their impact on microeconomic behavior that he can afford seven houses. But I expect him to learn the basics.

    August 28, 2008 at 5:31 pm |
  147. Maryann

    Obama has my vote!!! What I don't understand is how those who supported Hillary are opposed to Obama when the difference between the Obama platform and McCain's platform is like night and day. Obama and Hillary were very close in how they want to serve the American people. So, it must be because Obama is black----I hate to inject race, but that is the only thing that I can see. This country really needs a new direction and it would be nice if we could join hands.

    August 28, 2008 at 5:32 pm |
  148. JR Rice, New York City

    He already has my vote, but what I would love to hear is that the outgoing administration will automatically be up for war crimes. I find it hard to believe that Cheney, Bush and the others will be allowed to mix among polite society after January. Complete closure would involve their prosecution.

    August 28, 2008 at 5:32 pm |
  149. rose

    Jack, I dont understand those who says they dont know too much about Obama the man has been campaining for all this time they just dont want to know Him. I think they made up their minds they will not vote for Him they are looking for any excuses not to vote for him.

    August 28, 2008 at 5:32 pm |
  150. brett mullins Phoenix,Az

    Don't try to sound like like Kennedy or Reagan . Reagan made untrue statements that he did not follow through . If he sounds like Kennedy people will complain about . Just be himself.

    August 28, 2008 at 5:32 pm |