Day 1: The Democratic National Convention (Update)

Tonight the opening speaker will be Michelle Obama, we’ll have her full speech once it is delivered later. During the convention this week most of my coverage here at You Decide 2008 will focus on the Democrats. Of course, the same consideration will be given for the Republicans during their convention beginning September 1st.

Here is a continual run down of the stories and video coming out from the first day of the 2008 Democratic convention.

Report from Yahoo News on the opening prayers:

DENVER – At the first official event Sunday of the Democratic National Convention, a choir belted out a gospel song and was followed by a rabbi reciting a Torah reading about forgiveness and the future.

Helen Prejean, the Catholic nun who wrote “Dead Man Walking,” assailed the death penalty and the use of torture.

Young Muslim women in headscarves sat near older African-American women in their finest Sunday hats.

Four years ago, such a scene would have been unthinkable at a Democratic National Convention. In 2004, there was one interfaith lunch at the Democratic gala in Boston.

But that same year, “values voters” helped re-elect President Bush, giving Democrats of faith the opening they needed to make party leaders listen to them.

The result was on display at Sunday’s interfaith service, staged in a theater inside the Colorado Convention Center, and will be evident throughout the convention agenda and on the sidelines.

There will be four “faith caucus” meetings, blessings to open and close each night, and panels and parties run by Democratic-leaning religious advocacy groups that didn’t even exist in 2004 — not to mention protests from religious groups and leaders opposed to the Democratic platform.

Video of DNC Chairman Howard Dean opening the convention:

Video from the Associated Press of Michelle Obama taking the stage to prepare for tonight’s speech:

More to come later today…

Update

Nancy Pelosi addressing the convention:

Update

Obama’s half-sister:

Update

Caroline Kennedy gives a tribute to “Uncle Teddy”:

Update

The tribute played for Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy:

Ted Kennedy delivering his remarks:

Story on Kennedy’s remarks from Yahoo News:

DENVER – Ailing and aging, Sen. Edward M. Kennedy summoned fellow Democrats to rally behind Barack Obama’s pioneering quest for the White House Monday night, providing a poignant opening to a party convention in search of unity for the fall campaign.

“The work begins anew, the hope rises again and the dream lives on,” Kennedy said in a strong voice, reprising the final line of a memorable 1980 speech that brought a different convention to its feet. The senator has been undergoing treatment for a malignant brain tumor.

Update

The short biography of Michelle Obama prior to her speech:

Video of Michelle Obama’s entire speech:

Report from AOL News:

DENVER (AP) – Michelle Obama declared “I love this country” Monday as she sought to reassure the nation that she and her husband Barack share Americans’ bedrock values and belief in a dream of a better future.

In the first major address at the Democratic National Convention, Michelle Obama described herself as a daughter, a sister, a wife and a mother, no different from many women. She told a boisterous crowd waving signs reading “Michelle” that she and her husband feel an obligation to “fight for the world as it should be” to ensure the promise of a better life for their daughters and all children.

Michelle Obama talked about tucking in her daughters Malia and Sasha at night.

“I think about how one day, they’ll have families of their own. And one day, they – and your sons and daughters – will tell their own children about what we did together in this election. They’ll tell them how this time, we listened to our hopes, instead of our fears. How this time, we decided to stop doubting and to start dreaming,” she said.

Michelle Obama’s mission was to humanize her husband and convince skeptical voters to look past his unusual name and exotic background to envision him as the next president. Barack Obama has repeatedly faced questions about whether he’s a real American.

She also used the address to dismiss questions about her patriotism. Republicans have criticized her comments earlier this year that she was “really proud” of her country for the first time. Her answer at the convention was to express her love of country.

The Obamas’ two daughters joined their mother on stage after the speech as Stevie Wonder’s “Isn’t She Lovely” blared from in the convention hall.

They spoke to Barack Obama, who appeared by satellite connection from Missouri.

“How about Michelle Obama?” he asked the crowd. “Now you know why I asked her out so many times even though she said no. You want a persistent president.”

The girls responded to their father on the giant screen with “Hi, Daddy!” and “I love you, Daddy.”

A pretty mild day overall with the exception perhaps of Ted Kennedy. Michelle Obama’s speech was basically what I expected, nothing too groundbreaking. I will be looking forward to Hillary Clinton speaking Tuesday night.

We’ll have Tuesday’s events and important video coming tomorrow, stay tuned for more coverage!