Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2008

Mark Warner, former Governor of Virginia, current Senate candidate

Took the podium with the apparent hope of re-creating the star-making keynote event of 2004, when Obama, in the same Tuesday night time slot, launched his political career into the presidential stratosphere. Mmm, no. Warner's success as a cell-phone magnate cannot quite compare to Obama's story, and his accomplishments in Virginia were awkwardly presented. He lost the audience early and never got it back. (George McGovern and Illinois Senator Dick Durbin were among many in the crowd seen chatting during his speech.) He made some brief, passable efforts to paint John McCain as four more years of George Bush and excite the audience with the promises of an Obama Administration, but his efforts at bipartisanship were confusing, his specifics irritatingly vague, his style bland and his speech meandering.

Mark Halperin