Chapter 19: "I Still Believe in a Place Called Hope"
Bill Clinton – 1996 State of the Union Address
Bill Clinton – Sister Souljah Speech
Bill Clinton – Acceptance Speech at the 1992 Democratic Convention
Image making has always been a fundamental part of the speechwriting process, particularly on the campaign trail; and few modern American politicians have been as effective at marrying speechmaking with image making as the nation’s forty-second president, William Jefferson Clinton. In 1991, when he began his race for the Democratic nomination, the party had an almost fatal image with the American electorate – they were the party of “tax and spend” and the “coddling” of criminals and welfare recipients. In both of his runs for the White House Clinton would spend much of his time eradicating those images and transforming the Democratic Party from a left-leaning, special-interest focused party into one that was seen as embodying opportunity, individual responsibility and defending the middle class. In a mere four years, Clinton recast the Democratic Party, but also a created a model for the role of government in American society – an updated New Deal that reflected America’s desire for a more restrained federal government.