The Democratic National Convention is under way and already it’s proving to be a far more family-friendly event than was the Republican National Convention last week.
At the RNC, downtown Tampa, Florida, resembled a war zone, populated only by those with convention credentials and police and military armed with machine guns.
In Charlotte, on the other hand, the sidewalks are bustling with convention attendees, vendors, members of activist groups, and curious onlookers who’ve come to see the show. Schools are out and children are everywhere you look, along with their moms, who are hoping that an interest in the political process rubs off on their kids.
Moms at the DNC tell us they’re excited that the Democrats will have a chance this week to show America which party really cares most about moms and women. They say that while they were glad Ann Romney, in particular, put the national spotlight on moms last week, they don’t believe that she or her husband truly understand what life is like for the average working family. Some Democratic mothers have told us they believe Mrs. Romney’s convention speech was a pre-emptive strike by the Republican Party against Michelle Obama’s speech Tuesday night.
But while Democratic moms at the convention are looking forward to hearing from notable Democratic speakers this week, they admit the mood is less ebullient than it was at the 2008 convention. The last four years haven’t been easy ones for President Obama and, as a result, some moms who were once his supporters now tell us they’re undecided.
Here in Charlotte, Democratic moms say their party has a chance to win undecided moms over by focusing on the issues that matter most to them, like education, health care and the economy. They also say they’re tired of the political rhetoric we hear so often during convention week: They want to learn specific details on how Obama and the Democratic Party plan to fix the nation’s problems.
You can hear more about what’s on the minds of Democratic moms by tuning in to see Kyra Phillips and I talk to a panel of diverse Democratic women at the DNC:
Linnie Frank Bailey, a African-American California delegate, a mother of two, and a committed Christian.
Stephanie Himel-Nelson, a mother of two small boys, a “recovering” attorney, and a military wife.
Ilina Ewan, the daughter of Indian immigrants, a progressive liberal mother of two, and a political blogger for CafeMom’s “The Stir” blog.
Watch the whole discussion throughout the day on HLN and tonight on Evening Express from 5-7 p.m. ET.