To follow Bill Clinton as a speaker is almost impossible on any occasion, let alone after a speech as strong and stunning as his endorsement of Barack Obama.
But the speech delivered so doggedly by John Kerry—as the cable anchors talked over him—was analytically sharp and politically compelling. He gave himself the satisfaction of denouncing Karl Rove by name for the Swiftboat smears. More important, however, was his enunciation of the failures of Republican foreign and security policies—and how the Bush administration has tardily come round to the use of diplomacy with North Korea and Iran. Which happens to be the same approach favored by Obama. That photo op of Michelle with Obama’s World War II uncle, who looks like he came straight from the VFW hall, wasn’t bad either. Nice of the Obama team to give Kerry that moment.