A consensus has formed around the final night of the Democratic convention: Joe Biden exceeded expectations and gave the speech of his life -- but the most moving moment of the night belonged to Brayden Harrington. Here's what some New York Times columnists and contributors said when asked what last night's best moment was:
Wajahat Ali Brayden Harrington, a 13-year-old with a stutter, said Joe Biden listened to him and gave him courage. Brayden stood up and addressed the nation last night, and he gave us the best reason to vote for Biden....
Jamelle Bouie Brayden Harrington. I’m sure I won’t be the only person to say this, but it took a tremendous amount of courage for that young man to speak to the country about his disability. As someone who spent years in speech therapy as a child, I found it very affecting and powerful....
Liz Mair Joe Biden’s speech, and the lead-in video, were both great. But Brayden Harrington, who told his story of bonding with Biden over their shared stutter, stole the show and absolutely killed it.
And it's hard to imagine Trump waking up the morning after his big speech and learning that his oration was widely praised, but someone else moved the audience even more. Yas is right: Trump would never acknowledge a disability. But it's possible to imagine a 13-year-old speaking at the Republican convention about a shared grievance -- perhaps a child who lost a parent to a crime Republicans want to blame on Democrats.
If this hypothetical child gave an extraordinary speech, Trump would be graceless. If reporters asked him about it, he wouldn't praise the kid. He'd bring the subject back around to himself and talk about how great he thought his own speech was. By contrast, I'm sure Joe Biden will be absolutely delighted at the response to Harrington.
Trump doesn't even take pride in the fact that his son and namesake, Don Junior, is a wildly popular figure on the right. Junior is, according to one pollster, the second most popular potential 2024 GOP presidential candidate among Republican voters, after Mike Pence:
Can you imagine Biden's reaction if he'd been elected president in 2008 and his son Beau was seen as a top contender for the presidency in 2016 or 2020? He would have been thrilled.
Yes, Trump praises Ivanka. But he seems to regard her as platonic (we hope) arm candy, a hot babe whose presence by his side reflects on him. (The alternate reading is that Trump thinks: "I built this. Isn't it gorgeous?") Whereas Biden seems genuinely to admire the hell out of his wife and his late son, and genuinely likes to share the spotlight with the rest of his family (including son Hunter, who made a few appearances this week), as well as other Democrats and ordinary citizens.
Except by Ivanka, Trump can't bear to be upstaged. One reason he chose Mike Pence as his running mate was that he could tell Pence would never upstage him. (He doesn't know that about Nikki Haley, which is one big reason he won't dump Pence for her.) Biden, of course, chose a charismatic running mate with a big personality who's a better speaker than he is. He seems fine with that.
CNBC reported last week:
With less than 10 days to go before the start of the scaled-back Republican National Convention, plans are taking shape for what will be a four-day celebration of President Donald Trump....
Trump will be the central focus of the convention on each of the four days, organizers said, a plan that breaks with the long-standing tradition of waiting until the last day of the convention to showcase the presidential nominee.
Biden had a long moment of glory Thursday night. I'm sure he's very happy that Brayden Harrington had a great moment, too.
Posted with permission from No More Mr. Nice Blog