This moment, this moment, this election is our chance to keep, in the 21st century, the American promise alive.
Because next week, in Minnesota, the same party that brought you two terms of George Bush and Dick Cheney will ask this country for a third.
And we are here — we are here because we love this country too much to let the next four years look just like the last eight.
On November 4th, on November 4th, we must stand up and say: Eight is enough!
But the record’s clear: John McCain has voted with George Bush 90 percent of the time.
Senator McCain likes to talk about judgment, but, really, what does it say about your judgment when you think George Bush has been right more than 90 percent of the time?
I don’t know about you, but I am not ready to take a 10 percent chance on change!
For over two decades — for over two decades, he’s subscribed to that old, discredited Republican philosophy: Give more and more to those with the most and hope that prosperity trickles down to everyone else.
In Washington, they call this the “Ownership Society,” but what it really means is that you’re on your own. Out of work? Tough luck, you’re on your own. No health care? The market will fix it. You’re on your own. Born into poverty? Pull yourself up by your own bootstraps, even if you don’t have boots. You are on your own.
Well, it’s time for them to own their failure. It’s time for us to change America. And that’s why I’m running for president of the United States.
What — what is that American promise? It’s a promise that says each of us has the freedom to make of our own lives what we will, but that we also have obligations to treat each other with dignity and respect.
That’s the promise of America, the idea that we are responsible for ourselves, but that we also rise or fall as one nation, the fundamental belief that I am my brother’s keeper, I am my sister’s keeper.
Individual responsibility and mutual responsibility, that’s the essence of America’s promise. And just as we keep our promise to the next generation here at home, so must we keep America’s promise abroad.
The men and women who gathered there could’ve heard many things. They could’ve heard words of anger and discord. They could’ve been told to succumb to the fear and frustrations of so many dreams deferred.
But what the people heard instead — people of every creed and color, from every walk of life — is that, in America, our destiny is inextricably linked, that together our dreams can be one.
“We cannot walk alone,” the preacher cried. “And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back.”
America, we cannot turn back…
… not with so much work to be done; not with so many children to educate, and so many veterans to care for; not with an economy to fix, and cities to rebuild, and farms to save; not with so many families to protect and so many lives to mend.
America, we cannot turn back. We cannot walk alone.
At this moment, in this election, we must pledge once more to march into the future. Let us keep that promise, that American promise, and in the words of scripture hold firmly, without wavering, to the hope that we confess.
Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States of America.