His re-election in doubt, President Barack Obama conceded only halting progress Thursday night toward fixing the nation’s stubborn economic woes, but vowed in a Democratic National Convention finale, “Our problems can be solved, our challenges can be met.”
“Yes, our path is harder – but it leads to a better place,” he declared in a prime-time speech to convention delegates and the nation that blended resolve about the challenges ahead with stinging criticism of Republican rival Mitt Romney’s proposals to repair the economy.
He acknowledged “my own failings” as he asked for a second term, four years after taking office as the nation’s first black president.
“Four more years,” delegates chanted over and over as the 51-year-old Obama stepped to the podium, noticeably grayer than four years ago when he was a history-making candidate for the White House.
The president’s speech was the final act of a pair of highly scripted national political conventions in as many weeks, and the opening salvo of a two-month drive toward Election Day that pits Obama against Republican rival Romney. The contest is ever tighter for the White House in a dreary season of economic struggle for millions.
Vice President Joe Biden preceded Obama at the convention podium and proclaimed, “America has turned the corner” after experiencing the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.
Obama didn’t go that far in his own remarks, but he said firmly, “We are not going back, we are moving forward, America.”
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