Vice President Dick Cheney Convention Speech

Dick Cheney was very much Dick Cheney tonight. The contrast between the fiery Zell Miller and the calm, quiet Cheney was stark. He did what the number two man does in convention speeches: praising the boss and taking shots at the opposition. Some of the jabs at Kerry were unfair, of course, but then they always are.

Perhaps the most devasting line was that a Senator, one of a hundred votes, can be wrong for twenty years without consequence but a President always casts the deciding vote.

The funniest line of the night was the best variation on the “Two Americas” spiel yet: “John Kerry sees two Americas. It’s a mutual thing: America sees two John Kerrys.”

Great stuff.

The transcript: Text of Dick Cheney’s Speech at the RNC (AP)

Indeed, the two lines were back-to-back:

In his years in Washington, John Kerry has been one of a hundred votes in the United States Senate and very fortunately on matters of national security, his views rarely prevailed. But the presidency is an entirely different proposition. A senator can be wrong for 20 years, without consequence to the nation. But a president, a president always casts the deciding vote. And in this time of challenge, America needs and America has a president we can count on to get it right.

On Iraq, Senator Kerry has disagreed with many of his fellow Democrats. But Senator Kerry’s liveliest disagreement is with himself. His back-and-forth reflects a habit of indecision, and sends a message of confusion. And it is all part of a pattern. He has, in the last several years, been for the No Child Left Behind Act and against it. He has spoken in favor of the North American Free Trade Agreement and against it. He is for the Patriot Act and against it. Senator Kerry says he sees two Americas. It makes the whole thing mutual — America sees two John Kerrys.

Around the Blogosphere:

    Steven Taylor picks out the same two lines. Shocking!

    Kevin Aylward says the bloggers in NYC gave it rave reviews.

    Bryan S. notes Cheney’s lack of charisma. (So does Cheney.)

    Steve Bainbridge points to some well-worn Cheney lines and draws parallels with Al Bundy–favorably, I think.

Update: WaPo has the video feed.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.