Barack Obama Accepts Democratic Nomination in Denver

Obama Denver Invesco.JPG

(Denver, Colorado)

It was a rousing reception for Democratic Presidential nominee Barack Obama at Invesco Field in Denver Thursday night. Over 80 thousand people packed the football stadium, for the final night of the Democratic National Convention.

In between the wild cheers, Obama laid out an ambitious agenda if elected President. It includes: tax credits to companies that create new jobs in America; a cap on capital gains tax breaks; tax cuts for 95 percent of working families; and an end to dependence on foreign oil in ten years.

“Now many of these programs will cost money,” Obama conceded. While he talked about budget and program cuts to help finance his agenda, he did not mention tax increases.

While the crowd was clearly partisan and thrilled with Obama’s speech, we sampled opinions about what people feel needs to be done about the top issue: the economy.

Mark Felton of Aurora, Colorado said, “Outsourcing. Because of the fact that we are losing jobs. And we are losing our manufacturing, and it’s absolutely necessary to bring back the economy of our country.” He added, “The economy is a disaster right now and we need to get things back on track.”

Still others worried about education. Nadia Barkin is a 17 year old high school student, attending the Obama victory speech from Lakewood, Colorado. Like many her age, she is concerned about college. “The price of college as far as getting loans to pay for college is getting a little too expensive. We are concerned about how expensive college is and how it’s going to affect my family and its finances.”

Katie Owens from Boulder, Colorado is more concerned with environmental issues, as to how they have an impact on the economy. “I would rather see a lot more investment on sustainable energy and alternative energies, instead of more drilling (for oil).”

Ron Stephenson of New York said, “Like most Americans the prices have risen in terms of fuel and food and that kind of thing. Fortunately I’ve been able to hold down a full-time job.”

James Apple for Dallas Texas told me: “It’s got to be the mortgage crisis going on right now. I think that something has to be done, about all these people getting burned in foreclosures and losing their homes.”

Helen Smits of Connecticut is concerned about the overall economy and “the terrible impact on the stock market. We’re retired and our nest egg has really shrunk. We need to get back to good economic times.”

Remember, the economy is almost always the top issue in electing a President. In 1980, Ronald Reagan simply asked the public, “Are you better off today, than you were four years ago?” For millions of Americans the answer was, “No!” and Jimmy Carter was voted out of office. 1992, on the heals of a recession, Bill Clinton ran on the mantra of, “It’s the economy, stupid!” The voters concurred and he defeated George H.W. Bush.

Tonight Obama promised bold new measures on health care, energy and the environment. “It’s time for us to change America.” He said to loud and sustained cheers.

In perhaps his toughest stance yet on foreign policy, he essentially called his opponent out. “If John McCain wants to have a debate about who has the temperament and judgment to be Commander-in-Chief, that’s a debate I am willing to have,” Obama said.

The night ended with fanfare, music and fireworks. The crowd was pleased. Some thought the speech will silence critics who think Obama is not patriotic enough. .”I thought it was just great. Very elegant,” said Carolyn Molock-Shipp of Denver. “He spoke of things we all have in common. He’s as American as you and I. He’s an American.” she said.

“It was awesome. Great information he gave us on a lot of his views,” said Damon Morgan of Denver. “And he brought out more issues that need attention.

Still others in the crowd recalled that Obama’s speech came on the 45th anniversary of Martin Luther King's “I Have a Dream Speech.” Shrilea Neal of Denver reflected on that. “I just thought I’d never see the day.” Said Neal, “I am so proud of him and am proud of my country, America!

The promise of change, a continuing theme in this campaign was underscored again and again. “We can’t turn back.” Obama said, “America cannot turn back.”

I’ll be on KTVU’s “Mornings on Two” at 7:45 Friday morning, with a complete wrap up from Denver. Until then, stop in at

Mark Curtis Recaps Wednesday's Exciting Convention Night with Pam Cook

(Denver, Colorado)

It was quite a night in the Pepsi Center as former President Bill Clinton addressed the crowd and VP nominee Sen. Joe Biden took the stage.

I recapped the night's events with KTVU's Pam Cook.

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