The new Michelle

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“Near the end of Michelle Obama’s speech to the Demo­cratic Na­tional Con­ven­tion [Aug. 25], I got an email from a friend who had been with me at an­other speech by Mrs. Obama, in Char­lotte, N.C., last May, on the eve of that state’s pri­mary,” By­ron York writes at Na­tional Re­view On­line (­tion­al­re­

“ ‘This isn’t the Michelle we know,’ my friend said. And in­deed, Mrs. Obama’s speech to the del­e­gates here in Den­ver was worlds away from her ad­dress in Char­lotte,” Mr. York said.

“In Den­ver, Michelle Obama de­scribed Amer­ica as a place of hope, a place where peo­ple find suc­cess dur­ing the course of ‘im­prob­a­ble jour­neys.’ In Char­lotte, her Amer­ica was a dark and ugly place, where peo­ple who work hard are knocked down by sin­is­ter forces — a place where even young chil­dren burst into tears when they re­al­ize the deck is stacked against them.

“In Den­ver, Mrs. Obama said, ‘My piece of the Amer­i­can Dream is a bless­ing hard won by those who came be­fore me.’ Those fore­bears, she ex­plained, were ‘driven by the same con­vic­tion that drove my dad to get up an hour early each day to painstak­ingly dress him­self for work — the same con­vic­tion that drives the men and women I’ve met all across this coun­try. . . . That’s why I love this coun­try.”

“In Char­lotte, Mrs. Obama said, ‘We’re still liv­ing in a time and in a na­tion where the bar is set, right? . . . You start work­ing hard and sac­ri­fic­ing and you think you’re get­ting close to that bar, you’re work­ing and you’re strug­gling, and then what hap­pens? They raise the bar . . . keep it just out of reach.’ “

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