News footage of election night in Little Rock, AK. Governor Bill Clinton and Senator Al Gore give their acceptance speeches. News analysts make predictions and observations on the place of the election within the larger political landscape.
00:00Copy video clip URL Black screen.
00:20Copy video clip URL Footage begins. Bill and Hillary Clinton and Al and Tipper Gore take the stage. The news announces that Clinton is expected to carry California by more than 2 million votes. Newsman comments that the set-up around the town hall indicates that the Clintons “thought they might win today.” Another notes Hillary’s groundbreaking position as a First Lady having her own career.
01:53Copy video clip URL Clinton takes the podium to give his acceptance speech in Little Rock. He says that the people have come together in a call for change and progress. He enumerates as necessary steps: increasing personal accountability; facing problems previously ignored; shifting from a defense to a domestic economy; and uniting to find strength in diversity.
03:50Copy video clip URL He thanks his family and says that Hillary will be one of the greatest First Ladies ever. The crowd chants “Hillary! Hillary!” Bill thanks Chelsea for putting up with the campaign. He thanks a range of family members and the people of Arkansas. He thanks his “brilliant, aggressive, unconventional but always winning campaign staff. They were unbelievable and they have earned this.”
08:03Copy video clip URL Clinton speaks on the phone call he received from President George H.W. Bush. He asks the crowd to join him in thanking Bush for his lifetime of public service, his wartime service, his role in ending the Cold War and in winning the Gulf War, and his grace in conceding the election. Clinton says that he has heard H. Ross Perot’s remarks and agrees on the importance of limiting special interests to get power back in the hands of the people.
09:32Copy video clip URL Clinton gives a special thanks to Al Gore and his family. He says that the two presidential couples are friends and that Al Gore presents an “almost unparalleled combination of intelligence, commitment, compassion, and concern….” He says that they won every state that Tipper and Al campaigned in.
11:21Copy video clip URL Clinton says that more can be achieved through teamwork than otherwise and that they will seek out the most talented people, Democrats, Independents, or Republicans, to be a part of their team. He says that his platform reached out to those long removed from political activity and those long removed from the Democratic party.
14:30Copy video clip URL Clinton mentions paying off student loans with national service, healthcare reform, welfare-to-work programs, and incentives for job creation as part of a new patriotism. He says new accountability and a new spirit are more important than new laws and programs. He says that everyone’s fate is intertwined and that he still believes “in a place called Hope.”
16:51Copy video clip URL Gore takes the podium. He calls the campaign an extraordinary journey and thanks Tipper, the most important person in his life. He says that America has a new and brighter future to face. He says, “Bill Clinton spoke sensibly and honestly to the American people. As the attacks against him became more and more desperate, he remained calm; he believed in the American people.” Gore says that Clinton refused to mislead voters, saying he showed character and was honest and challenging.
20:08Copy video clip URL Gore says that Clinton is a new generation of Democrat that believes in the rights of people and the responsibilities of citizens. He describes individual rights as supreme but to be practiced with restraint. He mentions the need to respect community and care for the environment. He says that changing the country will restore “the basic thread in the American dream: the responsibility of one generation to the next.” He notes a generational change in the presidential shift.
25:34Copy video clip URL “This year, it was after all the American people who forced the debate to stay on the issues when others would wander…, who disciplined our politics….” Gore concludes inviting everyone across the country to enthusiastically embrace a new journey forwards. Newsman notes that the Democrats have only put Southerners into the White House since JFK. He also says that the numbers are not in for minor party candidates because many election clerks do not count them on election night.
27:32Copy video clip URL Reverend Jesse Jackson talks to CNN from Washington D.C. calling the mood upbeat. He names healing, rebuilding, and diversity as main aspects of the victory. He says common suffering and pain led to common hope instead of fear.
29:55Copy video clip URL Before commercials, they report that Bush has won Texas.
32:27Copy video clip URL Coverage returns. Jack Germond says it is too early to say whether the Democratic victory is an aberration or the beginning of a long-term trend. He says that Republican strongholds were well won by Clinton. Germond chuckles at the notion that Perot spoiled the election, saying “President Bush cost President Bush the election.” He cites Bush’s overlooking of the economic unrest. Regarding the generational change, he says it is not that important as it is happening in all parts of society. While Clinton ran as a centrist Democrat, Germond wonders whether he will be able to govern as a centrist. He says that if so, it will be part of a long-term movement.
41:06Copy video clip URL Coverage returns after commercials. Charles Bierbauer reports from Bush headquarters, where he says officials have credited Clinton with running a good campaign. He says some have questioned decisions made and inconsistencies during the Bush campaign.
43:54Copy video clip URL Gene Randall says Clinton ran a strong campaign focusing on the economy and resounding with voters. He says that those who counted him out for character issues did not know much about his ambition, his durability, and his political instincts. Randall says that Clinton earned the victory.
44:48Copy video clip URL They discuss with Ken Bode the forecast for the new Congress in January. Bode says that they await the mandate from Clinton but that there are about 30 bills vetoed by Bush that they will send through right away. He says there is no question that Clinton will make several appointments to the Supreme Court and he will appoint pro-choice judges. Bode says that the Democratic platform is committed to Washington D.C. statehood but that this will not be an early effort. They mention China and Bode says that Clinton will differ from Bush’s approach to pushing legislation favorable to Chinese leaders.
46:58Copy video clip URL William Schneider is asked what Clinton should take away from the events of the election. Schneider cites the difference between FDR and Ronald Reagan on one hand and Jimmy Carter and Bush on the other. He says that specifics of government reform and achievements in foreign policy will be meaningless without economic prosperity. Schneider predicts recrimination and bloodletting between conservative and moderate Republicans as they move towards 1996.
48:12Copy video clip URL Coverage moves to D’Amato headquarters, where Senator Alfonse D’Amato is celebrating with his supporters. New York Conservative Party chairman Mike Long introduces “the lady who started it all, Mama D’Amato.” She calls him a people’s Senator.
52:17Copy video clip URL Footage returns from commercials. Bob Franken says that the shift in the balance of power is slight. He calls it the Year of the Woman, showing 13 running and 5 winning. They show numbers from the remaining undecided states. Schneider notes that Clinton is the first Democrat to win the election without winning Texas. They conclude with a discussion of the role and treatment of the media. Anchor says that their role is to provide information and maintains that they are not partisans. Another says that this election focused more on the issues than elections in the past.
62:29Copy video clip URL Footage ends.