THE BLOG
07/29/2016 06:28 pm ET Updated Jul 30, 2017

Sunday Roundup

This was an extraordinary week -- one offering a starkly different vision of America, and, by week's end, one less glass ceiling. Michelle Obama laid the first cornerstone of that vision. "I wake up every morning in a house that was built by slaves," she said. "And I watch my daughters, two beautiful, intelligent, black young women playing with their dogs on the White House lawn." The next night Bill Clinton gave us another first -- the first-ever speech about a nominee spouse by a man. He used it to present the "real" version of the "cartoon alternative" portrait of the woman he knows better than anyone else, saying, "She's the best darn change-maker I have ever met in my entire life." On Wednesday, the program came at Donald Trump from two directions. First, Michael Bloomberg demolished Donald Trump's core appeal as a successful businessman: "Trump says he wants to run the nation like he's run his business. God help us." He proceeded to openly question Trump's mental stability. "Let's elect a sane and competent person," he urged. And then President Barack Obama took the stage to complete this alternate vision. The contrast with Trump's convention could not have been greater. In one of his best and most important speeches, Obama offered an expansive, optimistic definition of America and made the case that we become more American by addition, not subtraction. The final night, before Hillary Clinton spoke, featured one of the most enduring and indelible moments: that of Khizr Khan, father of fallen Muslim-American soldier Humayun Khan. "Let me ask you," he said to Donald Trump, taking an actual copy of the Constitution from his pocket and thrusting it forward, "have you even read the U.S. Constitution? I will gladly lend you my copy." It was the entire election, summed up in one image. Then Hillary Clinton took the stage, and made history moments later by accepting the nomination. "When any barrier falls in America, for anyone, it clears the way for everyone," she said. "When there are no ceilings, the sky's the limit." But she had to do more than break the ceiling, and she did, laying out more policy details ("It's true, I sweat the details of policy,") than were put forth during the entire Republican convention. Yet she also noted what's at stake -- the sky might be the limit for America, but with Trump, there is no floor. "America's destiny," she concluded, "is ours to choose."