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Schieffer: ‘It Just Didn’t Have That Little Spark That Clinton Had’

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Barack Obama and Bill Clinton (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Barack Obama and Bill Clinton (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

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CHARLOTTE (CBS Charlotte) — President Obama made his plea to voters at the Democratic National Convention on Thursday night to keep him in the White House for another four years, but CBS News’ Chief Washington Correspondent Bob Schieffer said the speech lacked the pizzaz that former President Bill Clinton brought with him Wednesday night.

Schieffer offered his opinion during a back-and-forth with CBS Evening News Anchor Scott Pelley immediately following the speech.

Here is the transcript of that conversation:

Pelley: “A classic Barack Obama speech, but there was one line in particular that I heard that I’m not sure I have ever heard a president say: He said, ‘I’m proud of what we’ve achieved together, but I am far more mindful of my own failings.’”

Schieffer: “I think that was an effort to say to people and to answer people who talk about that he had called for hope and change, and he had built up people’s hopes and maybe beyond expectations that he could actually deliver on. It was a speech that he had, as we were told, it would draw contrast between these two very different visions for America; but this was not the kind of speech that Bill Clinton made last night. It just didn’t have that little spark it seemed to me that Clinton had over and over again. I thought it was a good speech. I thought he laid out his side of the story here, but it was hard for me to pick out a headline here. What is the line we’re going to remember? Maybe it’s the one you just cited from this speech and I must say in that sense I didn’t hear it.”

Pelley: “In the 2008 speech when he was first nominated, he hammered relentlessly at John McCain, his opponent, by name. I’m not sure we heard Mitt Romney’s name in the speech.”

Schieffer: “I think you’re probably right. I don’t think I did ever hear that. There were a couple of good laugh lines in there I think, when he said the Republican solution to everything is take two tax cuts and call us in the morning. I thought that was pretty good, but that soaring rhetoric that we heard in the speech in 2008, I didn’t hear that tonight. Maybe it’s just me, maybe I’m still getting over the Bill Clinton speech last night, but I just didn’t hear that.”

What do you think? Was President Obama outdone by President Clinton at the DNC? Leave your comments below.

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