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Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick

My fellow Americans, my fellow Democrats, good evening. I stand before you tonight as a young African-American man, a husband, and father of three beautiful children.

Throughout this campaign, many have asked me, what exactly do African-Americans want from the Oval Office. The answer is simple: We want what all Americans want. But I stand here representing not only African-Americans. As mayor of Detroit—America’s 10th largest economy, a city that moves the world and the global economy—I represent all Detroiters: black, white, Arab, Chaldean, Hispanic, Asian—all Americans.

I was elected mayor at age 31 because I dared mighty things for the citizens of my city. The time has come for Democrats to dare mighty things for all Americans. Democrats cannot simply stand on the mountaintop of this country and say what we are against. We must give a clear, direct, articulate message to the people of the United States, on what we stand for!

We stand for a nation that protects jobs with fair trade policies and trains workers to be leaders in technology and emerging industries. We stand for a country that guarantees all children a world-class education. We stand for a nation that provides access to quality health care regardless of income or where you live. We stand for a country that refuses to turn back the clock on 40 years of civil rights and anti-discrimination policies that Americans died for, like the right to vote and affirmative action.

We stand for a safe, secure nation that understands the war on terror must not be a war on civil liberties. We stand for a country that adequately funds our police and firefighters—the brave men and women who keep our cities safe. We stand for a country that invests as much in building its own cities as it does in reconstructing a nation halfway around the world.

And yes, we do stand for the values of this country: strong families, healthy communities, personal and civic responsibility, and a commitment to volunteerism and service.

It’s time, America, to stand up for the men who will lead this nation with the courage to dare mighty things. We cannot afford to waste four more years. It’s time to stand up for these men right here, right now. It’s time, America, to stand up for the next president and vice president of these United States, Senator John Kerry and Senator John Edwards.

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