Robert Caro’s long-running series on the life of Lyndon Johnson is a must-read for anyone interested in American history. In today’s Times he contributes an elaboration of the prelude to the most recent entry, recounting the night Johnson introduced the Voting Rights Act of 1965 in an address to Congress, quoting “we shall overcome,” and that battle’s direct relevance to last night’s nomination of Barack Obama as the Democrat’s choice for 2008. It’s worth your time.
I missed Hillary Clinton’s speech the other night, but of the speeches last night the one that I found most compelling was Beau Biden’s introduction of his father. I always knew Joe Biden was really smart, but I learned a lot more about him from that brief introduction than I did even from his own speech. Bill Clinton’s speech was impressive too — his utter mastery of foreign and domestic affairs came through effortlessly, lending stark contrast between the GOP’s platform and the Democrats’.