Wednesday is the night that delegates at the 2012 Democratic National Convention officially make their choice for president. But before that happens, a parade of speeches will roll out the proverbial red carpet for the night's main event.
Who's giving the most anticipated address of the evening? Hands down, Bill Clinton, who will offer Obama's nomination. The 42nd president of the United States has practice in the role — he sang Obama's praises at the 2008 DNC, too — but some analysts say he'll have to do more this year than lambaste Republicans to rally voters. The content of Clinton's speech has been a matter of speculation: according to CNN, Obama campaign officials haven't even seen the text.
But Clinton delivered a speech on Tuesday night to the DNC's Arkansas delegation that gave a sense of what's to come Wednesday, the Huffington Post reported. That talk "blast[ed] Republicans for piling up the national debt" and destroying the economy before Obama took office. "I'll give you the details tomorrow night," Clinton said, according to the Huffington Post's Amanda Terkel.
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Also on Wednesday's agenda is law professor Elizabeth Warren, "a heroine of the progressive left," in Politico's words, who is running for a Senate seat in Massachusetts. Warren will speak before Clinton, and GoLocalWorcester suggested that her speech may be policy-heavy. "Expect a firebrand speech attacking conservative positions on abortion, contraception, stem-cell research, and equal pay for women, as well as a scathing critique of corporate greed," Morgan Marietta, a professor of politics at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, told the news outlet.
Other notables speaking tonight include Cecile Richards, the president of Planned Parenthood, California Attorney General Kamala Harris, and US Secretary of Veterans Affairs Gen. Eric Shinseki. Undoubtedly, their words will bolster two of the strongest messages to emerge from the convention to date: the importance of a woman's right to make her own reproductive decisions, and of supporting military veterans.
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Aside from the speakers, Politico reported that Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas, the teen gymnast known as "the flying squirrel," will lead the pledge of allegiance Wednesday evening, scheduled to take place between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. EST.