Condi’s Grand Slam Home Run at the Republican Convention

“My fellow Americans, ours has never been a narrative of
grievance and entitlement.  We have never believed that I am
doing poorly because you are doing well.  We have never been
jealous of one another and never envious of each others’
successes.”

For those who missed this last night and have limited time, I provide to you excerpts of former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice’s speech at the Republican National Convention.  Links to the video and transcript of the speech are provided at the bottom of this post:
  

1. “….we have seen that the desire for
liberty and freedom is, indeed, universal, as men and women in
the Middle East rise up to seize it.  Yet, the promise of the
Arab spring is engulfed in uncertainty, internal strife, and
hostile neighbors our challenging the young, fragile democracy
of Iraq.  Dictators in Iran and Syria butcher their people and
threat to regional security.  Russia and China prevent a
response, and everyone asks, where does America stand?”
 
 2.  “Indeed — indeed, that is the question of the hour.  Where
does America stand?  You see when the friends or foes alike
don’t know the answer to that question, unambiguously and
clearly, the world is likely to be a more dangerous and chaotic
place.
   Since world war ii, the United States has had an answer to
that question.  We stand for free peoples and free markets.  We
will defend and support them.”

3.   “We will sustain a balance of power that favors freedom.
   Now, to be sure, the burdens of leadership have been heavy.
I know, as you do, the sacrifice of Americans, especially the
sacrifice of many of our bravest in the ultimate sacrifice, but
our armed forces are the surest shield and foundation of
liberty….our men and women in uniform who volunteer….to defend us at the front
lines of freedom, and we owe them our eternal gratitude.”
 

4. “I know too there is a wariness.I know that it feels as if we have carried these burdens long
enough.  But we can only know that there is no choice, because
one of two things will happen if we don’t lead. Either no one
will lead and there will be chaos, or someone will fill the
vacuum who does not share our values.
   My fellow Americans, we do not have a choice.  We cannot be
reluctant to lead and you cannot lead from behind.” (emphasis added)
  
  5.  “Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan…  They know that our friends and
allies must again be able to trust us.  From Israel to Columbia,
from Poland to the Philippines, our allies and friends have to
know that we will be reliable and consistent and determined.
And our foes can have no reason to doubt our resolve because
peace really does come through strength.”

6.   “If you are worried about the
rise of China, just consider this — the United States has
negotiated — the United States has ratified only three trade
agreements in the last few years, and those were negotiated in
the Bush administration.   China has signed 15 free trade agreements and is in the
progress of negotiating as many as 18 more.” 

7.   “We are blessed with a gift of oil and
gas resources here in North America, and we must develop them.
We can develop them sensitively, we can develop them securing
our environment, but we must develop them. And we have the ingenuity to develop alternatives sources
of energy.”

8.  “When the world looks at us today, they see an American
government that cannot live within its means.”  

9.  “You see, the essence of America, what really
unites us, is not nationality or ethnicity or religion.  It is
an idea…..That you can come from humble
circumstances and you can do great things, that it does not
matter where you came from, it matters where you are going.”

10.  “My fellow Americans, ours has never been a narrative of
grievance and entitlement.  We have never believed that I am
doing poorly because you are doing well.  We have never been
jealous of one another and never envious of each others’
successes.”

11.  “….that American ideal is indeed in danger today.  There is no country,
no, not even a rising China that can do more harm to us than we
can do to ourselves if we do not do the hard work before us here
at home.”

12. “We must continue to welcome the world’s most ambitious
people to be a part of us.  In that way, we stay young and
optimistic and determined.  We need immigration laws that
protect our borders, meet our economic needs, and yet show that
we are a compassionate nation of immigrants.”
  
13.  “…And your greatest ally in controlling your response to your
circumstances has been a quality education.  But today, today,
when I can look at your zip code and I can tell whether you’re
going to get a good education, can I honestly say it does not
matter where you came from, it matters where you are going?  The
crisis in K-12 education is a threat to the very fabric of who
we are.”

14.  “My mom was a teacher.  I respect the profession.  We need
great teachers, not poor ones and not mediocre ones.  We have to
have high standards for our kids, because self-esteem comes from
achievement, not from lax standards and false praise. And we need to give parents greater choice…
particularly poor parents whose kids, very often minorities, are
trapped in failing neighborhood schools.  This is the civil
rights issue of our day.”

15.   “Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan will rebuild us at home.  And
they will help us lead abroad.  They will provide an answer to
the question, “where does America stand?” 
 
16. “And on a personal note, a little girl grows up in Jim Crow
Birmingham.  The segregated city of the south where her parents
cannot take her to a movie theater or to restaurants, but they
have convinced that even if she cannot have it hamburger at
Woolworths, she can be the president of the United States if she
wanted to be, and she becomes the secretary of state.” (emphasis added)

(Standing ovation and long reluctant pause by speaker)

17.  “Yes, yes.  Yes.  Yes, America has a way of making the
impossible seemed inevitable in retrospect, but we know it was
never inevitable. It took leadership.  And it took courage.  And
it’s a belief that our values.  Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan have
the integrity and the experience and the vision to lead us.
They know who we are.  They know who we want to be.  They know
who we are in the world and what we offer.
   That is why — that is why this is a moment and an election
of consequence.  Because it just has to be that the freest most
compassionate country on the face of the earth will continue to
be the most powerful and the beacon for prosperity and the party
across the world.
   God bless you and God bless this extraordinary country,
this exceptional country:  The United States of America.”

A video of this speech can be found here.

A transcript of the speech can be found here.

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