There's speculation that the tone, if not the content, of President Obama's speech was affected by knowing a weak jobs report was coming this morning, and he left some things out. But Obama took advantage some things Mitt Romney didn't mention in his big speech, either: the war or the people fighting in it in his convention speech. Obama didn't talk about his health care law, or the jobs act he spent multiple bus tours promoting without convincing Congress to pass. It makes sense that they wouldn't want to dwell on their weaknesses. But why did Obama not mention that stuff at all? Many say what he left out was because of what he knew and could not say.
- "That explains it. The President got an advance on the jobs report and it had to have thrown off his performance," RedState's Erick Erickson says.
- "So that's why he was sober, bordering on dour. Knew number, couldn't fake upbeat," The New Republic's Alec MacGillis says.
- "Obama was briefed on this report hours before he took the stage, could explain his less-than-pumped attitude on stage," BuzzFeed's Zeke Miller tweets.
- "Note that President Obama was the only guy in that hall last night who already knew these numbers," Talking Points Memo's Josh Marshall writes.
It's a nice image of a president so concerned about American workers that he just couldn't feel the hype of his bright shining moment. Or a less nice image that he was so concerned about his own reelection. While it's easy to see why President Obama and Mitt Romney didn't talk about certain subjects in their convention speeches, they're both getting a lot of criticism for what was left unsaid. Politico's Mike Allen and James Hohmann call Romney's decision a "baffling and costly omission." Businessweek's Joshua Green says of Obama's speech, "The contrast with Mitt Romney’s address was most vivid in the lack of detail about jobs." Obama didn't directly reference his health care law either -- as Politico's Darren Samuelsohn points out, he didn't use the term "Obamacare" that he's only embraced in the last year. His references to the law were more subtle, like "No American should ever have to spend their golden years at the mercy of insurance companies." We look forward to both candidates being forced to address all those issues in the debates.