Several heavy-hitters in the Democratic camp delivered speeches this week, trying to convince voters to elect Hillary Clinton as the next president. The table is now set, and Clinton must seal the deal.
So, what must Clinton say tonight at the Democratic National Convention to sway those sitting on the fence to cast a ballot for her?
Many experts say a key demographic she must speak to are working-class White men who are leaning toward Donald Trump, as well as disaffected Bernie Sanders supporters who may decide to sit out this election.
Often overlooked, though, are African-American voters — even though she has their overwhelming support. During the primaries, Clinton had an 80 percent favorability rating in the Black community, which was astronomical compared to her competitors for the White House.
The question is whether she can get them – especially Black women – to turn out in high numbers on Election Day. The New York Times reported that the African-American voter turnout rate exceeded the rate of Whites for the first time in 2012. And Black women were the driving force behind the historic surge.
While Clinton has a long history of supporting issues that matter to African-Americans, a younger generation of Black activists are skeptical. Black Lives Matter activists have challenged Clinton’s sincerity and commitment to criminal justice reform.
In one incident, several young Black activists confronted her at a campaign stop in New Hampshire, which was captured on video. At another stop in Atlanta, Black Lives Matter protesters interrupted her rally.
USA Today offered Clinton some advice for her big speech: “Be yourself. Don’t try too hard. Relax.”
David Frank, a rhetoric professor at the University of Oregon, told USA Today that Clinton appears inauthentic when she’s “too dramatic.”
Some delegates at the convention said they want to hear her vision. Ed Coyle of Owings, Maryland, told the newspaper that she should “speak from the heart about what’s most important to her.”
Sanders supporter Sarah Burns of Los Angeles added that the audience needs to see Clinton’s “human side.” She added, “We don’t trust her, and we need to see she’s not a robot.’’
Ruth Sherman, a communications consultant, told the newspaper that Clinton can humanize herself by telling a “hero journey.” That means sharing her triumphs and tragedies with Americans.
SOURCE: USA Today | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty