Being a proud liberal with hypertension issues, I didn’t watch all the RNC speeches yesterday. Though I followed the reaction to the early ones on Twitter, I only risked my blood pressure with direct contact for Ann Romney and Chris Christie.
Contrary to the rave reviews I saw, I don’t think Ann Romney did that well. Don’t get me wrong. Ann looked lovely in her red dress. Oscar de la Renta is good designer for women of our certain age. But I got the feeling that wasn’t the dress she picked out for herself. And I think they edited her speech too much, which forced her to over-rely on the teleprompter. The whole thing felt a bit awkward and over-produced. It had a faint ring of inauthenticity. I’ve seen her make much better speeches many times. She didn’t swing any voters with this one. The handlers should have given her more room to be herself.
On the other hand, Mr. Christie apparently misunderstood the purpose of this speech altogether and delivered his first 2016 pitch, instead of his endorsement for Mitt Romney. Didn’t count myself, but my twitter feed told me Christie mentioned himself 36 times and Mr. Romney only 7 times. He also stomped on Ann’s love theme, practically demanding that Americans trade in love for respect. Whatever that is supposed to mean from a governor who has one of the worst records in job loss for working people and blew the millions of tax dollars he gave to wealthy speculators for a failed casino project. I got the distinct impression Mr. Christie did not deliver the edited speech the campaign gave him.
I’d add his roaring out on to the stage like some kind of rock star, urging the audience to keep clapping and his making them all stand up at the end to ensure a standing ovation, looked a little desperate. It did not escape the attention of those on my side of the political chasm.