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Student Bloggers, Live from Denver

From a “scorching” Clinton speech to Biden momentum, police clashes to celebrity interviews, Annenberg School students capture it all.

We present excerpts from Pop and Politics, the USC Annenberg School for Communication student blog that is one of only 124 credentialed to cover the Democratic National Convention. Click through to read more of the journalism students’ impressions, photos and videos — including interviews with everyone from a Hillary Clinton supporter to Charles Barkley, and firsthand footage of a clash between bikers and Denver police.

August 28, 10:10 a.m.
The Clintons Woo Back Party Bigwigs
“President Bill Clinton’s address was so hot it melted any frost that existed in the Democratic Party. It was so scorching it reminded hot-blooded Democrats of the commonality of purpose. … Those in the Pepsi Center tasted victory in November; it would take an Ice Age to prevent Sen. Barack Obama from winning the White House.”

August 28, 9:49 a.m.
“Biden’s speech capped off the day when the Democratic convention finally lived up to the hype and its protagonists replaced Tracy Flick behavior with Saved by the Bell camaraderie. … Some bloggers said two senators on a ticket would be too much talk. Senators are more apt to talk than to do. An examination of Biden’s character and legislative record proves that he is one senator who can talk and do, sponsoring pivotal legislation like the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act and the Violence Against Women Act.”

August 28, 9:10 a.m.
Man Down
“There were rumors of protests and riots by angry Hillary supporters, vets against the war and other groups outraged with the Bush administration. So I wasn’t surprised to find myself in the middle of a standoff between the Denver police and a group of bikers. … The DNC in Denver has earned its reputation as the greenest and most environmentally friendly convention ever. So it was surprising that bikers weren’t allowed easy access to the city streets during the convention.”

August 27, 8:33 p.m.
News Flash — Obama in the Flesh!
“Obama crashed his own Party at the Pepsi Center tonight, sending the crowd into a frenzy after an already rousing evening of speeches from Bill Clinton and veep pick Joe Biden. … Obama in the flesh is a new energy policy for the Pepsi Center. It will take a divine act of intervention for the Dems to lose after an almighty day like today. Something happened today, and hopefully the negativity that’s sure to come out of Minnesota won’t ruin the Democratic love train. I’m loving Obama’s talk of change being bottom up — Hillary and McCain didn’t get that.”

August 27, 2:30 p.m.
The Separation of Church and the DNC? Think Again.
AP reports that the DNC officially kicked off its festivities with an interfaith service this year. With a Bible here, a Torah there, along with some headscarves and churchgoing hats too, the Colorado Convention Center became a gathering place for folks of all faiths this Sunday.

In fact, every day of the convention will open and close with a prayer. The aim is to loosen the Republican Party’s clench on this country’s religious base by muddying the notion that the Dems are anti-religion or anti-values. The separation of church and donkey has proved to be a losing tactic in the past, so this year marks the rise of the religious Left.”

August 27, 12:30 p.m.
Villaraigosa on HRC
“Pop and Politics caught up with former National Co-Chair of Clinton Campaign and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa … . ‘Latinos are going to support Obama in large numbers, and if they support him at 70 percent as I fully expect they will, he’s going to be the next president of the United States.’”

August 27, 12:13 p.m.
‘Unity’ versus ‘Unison’
“The Democrats entered the convention looking for unity, but by the end of Hillary Clinton’s speech, it was clear that the real result of the party-saving efforts was nothing more than a promotion of unison. Her speech hit all the right marks — plugging the party platform, paying respect to the hard work and dedication of her 18 million supporters, pegging John McCain with some deliciously snarky attacks — but it wasn’t by any means a magic potion to bring the stragglers on board. … She didn’t say anything particularly revolutionary or unexpected. And it didn’t really seem to matter much: Everyone I talked to was drinking the Kool Aid in the Pepsi Center Tuesday night.”

August 26, 3:25 p.m.
Wyclef Jean on Obama and the Latino Vote
“Clef told Pop and Politics that the candidate has to ‘get personal’ with Latino voters, showing them who he is and what he stands for. … Clef said he thinks Clinton is definitely going to unite the party, noting the strong pull Bill, who won 72 percent of the Latino vote in 1996, has among many citizens with ties to the Caribbean and Latin America because of his strong support for Haiti. Clinton showed signs that Clef’s on to the right idea yesterday, making a surprise visit to the Hispanic Caucus meeting here in Denver yesterday to ‘work for Barack Obama as hard as you did for me.’”

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