I watched a little of the GOP convention before my head came dangerously close to exploding. Chris Christie was loud and obnoxious. Paul Ryan hardly spoke a word of truth. Mitt Romney was no more honest.
And while Ann Romney talked about what a wonderful man her husband is — and I’m sure she thinks so — it was Michelle Obama who was the highlight for me.
I love Bill Clinton as policy wonk. He was, as always, a rock star. But let’s not forget that he was the president who signed the repeal of the Glass-Stegall Act and NAFTA and other free-trade agreements that wound up sending so many jobs overseas. Still, it was a great speech.
And Joe Biden, as always, was heartwarming and sincere, calling his wife “Jilly” and asking her why she waited until the fifth time he proposed to accept. I keep remembering his speech in May to the families of people killed in Iraq and Afghanistan and the way he used his own experience of loss to offer them hope.
But Michelle was just amazing. Her speech was so from the heart. When she talked about her children — “My children are my heart.” — and her eyes welled with tears, I knew she understands what kind of pain I live with every day. I knew she’s on my side when it comes to helping the poor, the sick, the hungry, the homeless, the forgotten. She knows they all are somebody’s children, and none of them deserves to suffer because of the greed of the few. She has compassion, which is rare among people in Washington.
I can’t say I’m happy with all of President Obama’s policies, or the way he has backed off to try and compromise and then gone too far — taking the public option out of the Affordable Care Act, for example. And the fact that we’re still sending out drones that are killing innocent people.
But I want Michelle in the White House. I know she’s a champion of all of us.Leslie Boyd, a former newspaper reporter, is president of the health care advocacy nonprofit, WNC Health Advocates, founded in memory of her son, who died in 2008 because he couldn't access health care. E-mail her at leslie at lettersfromtheleft dot com or follow her on Twitter @leftyletters1, visit Letters from the Left on Facebook. For more information about WNC Health Advocates or to read Boyd's health care blog, visit wncha.org.