September 6th, 2012
02:32 PM ET

Comments: 'Love him or hate him,' but Clinton fires up Democrats at convention

Editor's note: We're listening to you. Every day, we spot thought-provoking comments from readers. Here are some comments we noticed Thursday:

As former President Bill Clinton took to the stage at the Democratic National Convention, readers took to their cameras and keyboards to let us know what they thought about his speech Wednesday night and how the convention is going so far.

Five things we learned from Day Two of the DNC

Clinton has been a controversial figure not only for his politics but for his personal life and resulting impeachment. David P. Kronmiller of Burbank, California, alluded to this past, asking "does he help or hurt Democrats?" and referring to "mixed messages" even as he gave the former president good marks for his words.

"He's an excellent storyteller," Kronmiller said. "He's very good at telling the story of an event - in this case, Barack Obama's successes."

And then there's Mark Ivy, a CNN iReporter who says he leans toward Mitt Romney but was keeping an eye on "classic Bill Clinton" on Wednesday night. The Farmersburg, Indiana, resident said that although many people "love (Clinton) or hate him," he also felt that "no one knows how to reach out and touch the common folk better than the man from Hope," or exhibits better skills to "play to the base of the Democratic Party."

"Bill Clinton was vintage Bill Clinton tonight as he formally nominated President Barack Obama to carry the torch for yet another four years for the Democratic National Party. That included the fact that as customary, Bill was not short-winded... ."

Some of the reaction came directly from Charlotte, North Carolina, site of the DNC events. The following two iReporters won a CNN contest to attend the DNC, just as others had gone to the Republican National Convention.

Omekongo Dibinga of Washington noted in his video commentary that he felt the speech was effective despite some controversy surrounding the convention's second day.

"While the speech was a little long, he definitely got the point across," Dibinga said.

"Overall there was a great deal of energy around Day 2 of the DNC. President Clinton made a strong case for why we are better off than four years ago as well. Now it's time for President Obama to bring it home!"

Melissa Fazli of Yorba Linda, California, said she plans to vote for Obama and was excited to see the president in person. She also said she saw Clinton "electrify at the DNC" and added that "Bill Clinton is right. Two plus two does equal four."

"He did a terrific job by pointing out that it wasn't just the Democrats that put us in so much debt," she said. "Simple arithmetic."

While Clinton's speech provoked favorable responses from many commenters, plenty of readers felt uncomfortable about the former president speaking.

"What I learned from Day 2.
1) Republicans still hate Bill Clinton.
2) Bill Clinton is still relevant.
3) When Bill Clinton speaks America listens.
4) Bill Clinton drives Republicans crazy.
5) Bill Clinton knows he drives Republicans Bat Sh** crazy.
6) President Obama will seal the deal on Thursday.
7) Republicans are on now on suicide watch.
Obama 2012
Romney 1040"

middleright: "Why don't you ask Bill to show his tax returns, he makes a fortune speaking overseas. I bet most of that money never makes it back to the country you love. And ask Monica Lewinsky how her life is going since Bill and Hill destroyed with the likes of CNN and the rest, and ask him why he didn't pull the trigger on (Osama) bin laden when he ha(d) the chance, would of saved a lot of lives. What a great man. He's so great his wife is never home."

Many iReporters and commenters mentioned the controversy surrounding the inclusion in the Democratic platform of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Some called the DNC vote a "flip-flop."

Democrats update platform with Jerusalem, God reference

On iReport, a video from Ivy described the "rough second day start" to the DNC.

"After closing on such a high note last night, it seems the party leadership stepped in it today over the issues of God and Jerusalem. Even the votes to let God back in to the convention and to reaffirm Jerusalem as Israel’s capital has turned to controversy. It seemed apparent listening to the vote, that the majority wanted God shut out of the party. Not good for wooing independents, moderates or conservative Democrats sitting back in the heartland."

Dibinga also referred to the controversy in his video, saying the incident was discouraging but that Clinton brought the convention back on track.

"The main problem that I had with that was not so much the language, because that's what President Obama believed. It was the way in which they did it. It broke the spirit of unity that I could see from inside the convention. Of course there were people outside who were protesting and expressing their opinions, and nobody's bothering them, but inside there's been a real spirit of togetherness. President Clinton really brought that togetherness. He's the first major politician I've seen who came out and said we're better off than we were four years ago."

And then there were some who said they thought religion should not influence policy.

HectorLG: "This change was unneeded. It disregards all the people, like me, (who) are agnostic. Which God, anyhow? Completely backwards, Mr. President. I'm forced to vote for the best of the two evils, instead of the best of the candidates. Politics, that's all. Don't forget the Jewish vote, and their dollars in contributions."

Brian Smith: "Should have stuck to their guns. Israel does not own the USA. They can't tell us what to do, but wait, yes they can! What else do our Israeli overlords desire?  Oh right, they want us to attack Iran, unprovoked, and wipe them off the map. Gotcha."

Overall, readers oscillated between frustration with political procedures and interests involved, and concerns about the Democratic Party's attitude toward Judaism and religion in general.

Varun Verma: "We saw at DNC today how much democrats believe in democratic procedures. The voice vote clearly sounded like equal strength on both sides. It seems like they had already decided what the outcome they wanted for the voice vote. So they were simply insulting the delegates by taking their 'voice vote.' It not only exposed a divided house but also pandering to AIPAC (a pro-Israel lobbing group) as well as to polls showing God is important to voters. No principled leadership, only pandering and flip-flopping based on the polls."

Tex71: "Omitting Jerusalem from the platform might seem like a blunder to a very small group of ultra-religious folks who think the USA should keep messing with Middle Eastern politics for some vague apocalyptic reason. Personally, I am far more concerned by the omission from the GOP platform of any specific plan for job growth (throwing more money at the wealthy in hopes they will throw us a bone doesn't count) or really any other topic of substance, having no other clear goal besides making sure President Obama doesn't get re-elected – and turning back the clock 300 years on women's rights, and reducing the middle class to wage-slavery/serfdom. OK, I guess they do have somewhat of an agenda."

What's your take on the DNC so far? Share your opinion in the comments area below and in the latest stories on Or sound off on video via CNN iReport.

Compiled by the moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Bill Clinton • Comments • Democratic Party • Israel • Politics • Religion
soundoff (139 Responses)

    Slick Willy is still the man.

    September 6, 2012 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Scott

    I am about as apolitical as you can get. I pretty much hate what the process has become, the options we are forced to choose from in elections and I especially detest reading the inane opinions uneducated people share on Facebook and on message boards (but like a train wreck, I can't seem to look away). That said, I actually watched former President Clinton last night. Whether you agree with his politics or not, that guy OWNS the room when he speaks. That speech, while long and rambling at times, should be shown to any aspiring public speaker as a lesson on how to take command and demand attention. When he speaks he makes everyone in the room, no matter the size, think he is speaking directly to them. It is a skill very few have.

    September 6, 2012 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bev

      Well said.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Hollywood

    You may not agree with his politics, but the man can sure work a room.

    September 6, 2012 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Calibrae

      True, that.

      September 6, 2012 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  4. chrissy

    He was absolutely AWESOME last night! Too bad he couldnt run for a third term.

    September 6, 2012 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  5. banasy©

    I like Bill Clinton as President, and I liked his speech last night.
    I know he is a womanizer; I knew *that* when he was running...he was a good President, and he *is* a great speaker...he rocked it last night.

    No prop chairs necessary.

    September 6, 2012 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Beow Clinton

    I've never stood next to Bill Clinton. But I have stood next to Wayne Newton, and I've been to the Presidents Wax Museum. (close enough)
    And why don't President obama and candidate Romney have Monica Lewinskys of their own? Or closets to hide in...why can't we all have one? It's just not fair.

    September 6, 2012 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Calibrae

      Hide in a closet. Who cares?

      September 6, 2012 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • cleareye1

      Who is Wayne Newton?

      September 6, 2012 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Calibrae

      cleareye1: lol, right?

      September 6, 2012 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  7. cleareye1

    Bill Clinton drove a stake into the heart of the Republican Party last night. Too bad he can't run again.

    September 6, 2012 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • taurus1353

      says a lot about the democrats, your glory days are over you let extremist lead your party.
      you're wishing for a clinton who worked with gop, cut taxes, balanced the budget and has 4+trillion LESS deficit than Obama, yet your voting for Obama. I guess fanaticism clouds commons sense!

      September 6, 2012 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chad

      Its funny you say that. If you know you history at all, Clinton has more in common with George dubya than Obama. Google it.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:22 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Beow Clinton

    Well, you should have seen Bill Clinton helping Ronnie Raygun smuggle arms for hostages out of Mena AKansas airfield. Only two investigating journalists were killed filming cargo planes being loaded with weapons, so the operation went smoothly. Bill Clinton served as a CIA agent under then head of the CIA George HW Bush, so he was welll trained for the task. Acourse you blamed Ollie North and then praised him, you might recall.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Calibrae

      Clearly being in the CIA qualifies a person to be President.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Calibrae

      Acting experience does, too.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:06 pm | Report abuse |
  9. S. Bennett

    There was nothing at all "clownish" about Bill Clinton's speech last night. Just a great speaker, making his point and backing it up with facts.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
  10. wiseandcanny

    Reblogged this on wiseandcanny.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Infidel (ity)

    Wow. Men who cheat on their wives sure come highly recomended around here, especially by you old women. Amazing disparity.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hey twit(ter)

      Where does anyone, male or female, state that?

      September 6, 2012 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tiramasu

      Who said anything about men cheating on their wives, except for you? Not getting any?

      September 6, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  12. james pfeiffer

    Bill Clinton said what needed to be said. His intelligence can't be disputed. If Romney gets elected I firmly believe that our democracy (as we know it) is in serious jeopardy. He will do to our country just what he did as a corporate shark for Bain...that is, dispose of everything that doesn't show a profit, abandon and throw out everything and everyone that doesn't fit his myopic, corporate vision and ultimately let everyone else who doesn't smell like money fall by the wayside. If this happens I fear that we may see anarchy in our near future. The Republicans are really a wealthy white mans party that has a selfish and sinister vision for our future. They are literally trying to buy this election. Anyone who watched both of the conventions had to be struck by just how different from each other those crowds look!

    September 6, 2012 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chad

      I cannot respect anyone's opinion as being sincere when it contains no more substance than any anti-romney ad. Bain Capital (check), democracy in jeopardy (check), buy the election (check). Yup, hit just about all the talking points from the DNC. Lol, the anarchy comment is truly funny. Anarchy? What are you 15?

      September 6, 2012 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Calibrae

      These are the same tactics that the GOP used. Suck it up and get over it.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  13. offreservation

    The party of apologies just got another few zingers in today. Not only did the DNC leave GOD and Jerusalem out but by PRESSURE from polls back track and compitulated to the right. Now not 24 hours after the double down back track the DNC not once , not trice but three times this week have called RNC party officials NAZI and Hitlers. At some point and time apologies over and over are worthless and void, that time is now. This faaaaar left Democratic Party isn't the one of my fathers , nor is it the one of Bill Clintons. If you are democrat, independent or undecided and you are a person of faith, truth, yes liberal how can you stand by this leftist group who is run by Obama? You voted for him once when we didn't know much about him, well we do now and he isn't a democrat. Just as Lenin, Stalin, Moi, Great Britain and Europe these people by choice want to remove GOD and religion not from Gov. but completely. The common thread is Socialism and Communism for the people of those countries. Stand and vote against the next Slave Masters.

    September 6, 2012 at 3:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tiramasu

      You really want me to vote for a man who bragged about his family owning slaves? No thanks. Romney is an even bigger unknown.

      September 6, 2012 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

      Do you know where Adolph W. Hitler hid the WMDs? Or why he exterminated Americans on 9/11?

      September 6, 2012 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  14. US machine

    The machine known as the United States of America took many decades to build and plan directions for. And that's just the war machine.
    That any one man can change the direction this machine has been going and is headed is utterly rediculous.
    No matter if it's a donkey head or an elephant head, it's still the same fat assed body that wastes 25% of everything it touches, worldwide. (except food. USIANS WASTE 40% OF THEIR FOOD)

    September 6, 2012 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
  15. banasy©

    One for the books here, RR...we agree on something!

    September 6, 2012 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
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