Apollo Alliance at Democratic National Convention

DENVER –– Beyond what the Democrats contend is the epic misrule of the Bush administration, and beyond what the Obama campaign asserts is Senator John McCain’s obeisance to a belligerent president lies Senator Barack Obama’s new frame for the 2008 presidential election.

Here are its pieces.

America is in peril. Obama is the man to fix it. And the most powerful tool at his disposal is developing a clean energy, good jobs economy that ends America’s addiction to foreign oil, rebuilds what he called the “American promise,” and clears the sky of global warming pollutants.

“For the sake of our economy, our security, and the future of our planet, I will set a clear goal as President,” Obama declared during an acceptance speech last night that was tempered and specific. “In ten years, we will finally end our dependence on oil from the Middle East.” (http://apolloalliance.org/blog/?p=157)

Obama added moments later: “I’ll invest 150 billion dollars over the next decade in affordable, renewable sources of energy – wind power and solar power and the next generation of biofuels; an investment that will lead to new industries and five million new jobs that pay well and can’t ever be outsourced. America, now is not the time for small plans.”

Last week was exciting, satisfying, and daunting for the Apollo Alliance, which had board and staff members in abundance at the Democratic National Convention.(http://apolloalliance.org/blog/?p=151) Never before has a presidential candidate or a party so powerfully pursued a new economic development strategy founded on the development of clean energy and millions of family-supporting jobs.

That idea started with the Apollo Alliance in 2004 and has grown and expanded and elevated until it became a priority of the 2008 presidential campaign. This week we introduced in Denver The New Apollo Program (http://www.apolloalliance.org/endorseprogram.php), which updates and implements the 2004 New Energy For America report that first put the clean energy, good jobs strategy before America.

Our week in Denver began on Sunday night with a reception at the downtown law offices of Holland & Hart that was hosted by our Chairman Phil Angelides, President Jerome Ringo, and our other board members. (http://apolloalliance.org/blog/?p=137) Nearly 400 people attended, among them House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow, and leaders of the clean energy business, nonprofit, and social justice sectors, as well as 11 other members of the U.S. House of Representatives. Many thanks to Holland & Hart for having us.

We met with T. Boone Pickens (http://apolloalliance.org/blog/?p=145), briefed five state delegations, and conducted dozens of interviews. (http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/seattlepolitics/archives/147023.asp?from=blog_last3) Phil did 10 radio interviews on Monday and appeared on a national Fox TV program Tuesday night. We also spoke in meetings and panels, including Jerome’s prime time national television appearance before the full convention on Tuesday night. (http://gallery1.demconvention.com/Default.html?VideoID=491)

The New Apollo Program and the entire organization – board, staff, state affiliates, Alliance members, and supporters – are helping to advance the most important new economic development strategy of our lifetimes. With jobs on the line, rising gas prices, falling incomes, and a nation mainlining foreign oil, the Obama campaign is risking the presidency on a calculated bet that a majority of Americans will join the pursuit of a clean energy, good jobs strategy. He and the nation may well be surprised at how solid that bet really is.

— Keith Schneider

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