You'd think the Democrats would have more fire in their bellies considering the intense level of disgust the average voter seemingly has with the state of the union.
But in perhaps the most scripted party convention in history (at least until the Republicans meet next week in Minneapolis) the Dems are at least focused - they claim "united" - on the broad outlines of a three-pronged agenda to "Renew America's Promise." Generate jobs. Establish a national health care system. Invest in kids.
It's all feather light on specifics. But a handful of speakers on the stage at last night's convention proceedings, many of them not surprisingly members of the Great Lakes delegation, talked like they truly want to win in November.
Senator Hillary Clinton got off a clever blast painting President Bush and the Republican nominee John McCain as bosom buddies:
"It makes sense that George Bush and John McCain will be together next week in the Twin Cities. Because these days they’re awfully hard to tell apart."
Congressman Rahm Emanuel from Illinois seized on over spending and record national deficits and cracked "Mr. President, we will be forever in your debt."
Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey called the President of United States a "clown" (although the comment does not appear in his official remarks) and delivered what could become the convention anthem when he said the Republicans are "asking for four more years. How ‘bout four more months?"
Then there was former Virginia Governor Mark Warner, who played it safe in his remarks, but still managed to sum up in a couple sentences the principal challenge now confronting the Rust Belt and ultimately the USA:
"In a global economy, you shouldn’t have to leave your home town to find a world-class job," Gov. Warner said. "If you can send a job to Bangalore, India, you sure as heck can send one to Danville, Virginia and Flint, Michigan and Scranton, Pennsylvania and Peoria, Illinois."