Michelle Obama was the key speaker at the first day of the Democratic convention. She's a powerful speaker. Here is what I got out of her speech:
Vote for us because we are not Donald Trump.
That's a good reason. I'm going to vote for them, myself.
But for me, her speech can be summed up in this: "You know I hate politics. But you also know that I care about this nation. You know how much I care about all of our children."
Her "argument" seems to be that we are nicer than Trump, therefore we deserve to win.
Early on she said, "I am here tonight because I love this country with all my heart, and it pains me to see so many people hurting." Later, she noted that Trump has "a total and utter lack of empathy." She continued, "Empathy: that's something I've been thinking a lot about lately."
A bit later, she added, "And like so many of you, Barack and I have tried our best to instill in our girls a strong moral foundation to carry forward the values that our parents and grandparents poured into us." That is, we have stronger morals than Trump, so vote for us.
She worries because she sees "a nation that's underperforming not simply on matters of policy but on matters of character. And that's not just disappointing; it's downright infuriating, because I know the goodness and the grace that is out there in households and neighborhoods all across this nation." We have goodness and grace ... vote for us.
And this, which hits the nail on the head:
So let me be as honest and clear as I possibly can. Donald Trump is the wrong president for our country. He has had more than enough time to prove that he can do the job, but he is clearly in over his head. He cannot meet this moment. He simply cannot be who we need him to be for us. It is what it is.
She is right. But her point once again is, vote for us, we're not Trump. And "I know Joe. He is a profoundly decent man, guided by faith." (He's not Trump.)
"This is who we still are: compassionate, resilient, decent people whose fortunes are bound up with one another." (We're not Trump.)
This is not a message of hope, beyond hoping that we can get rid of Trump. But that's what you get when you speak for a political party and admit "I hate politics".