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GOP convention winners and losers, from Condoleezza Rice to Clint Eastwood (+video)

It was a chaotic week in Tampa, Fla., as Mitt Romney accepted his party's nomination and hurricane Isaac crashed the party. From the major speeches to some trivial moments, we rate some of the winners and losers to come out of the 2012 GOP convention.

- Staff writer, Staff writer

1. Winner: Condoleezza Rice

The former secretary of State gave one of the best-received speeches of the convention. A particular feat when you consider it was also one of the least partisan – and that she gave it without a teleprompter.

Condoleezza Rice was on fire talking about foreign policy, telling her audience “we cannot be reluctant to lead and you cannot lead from behind,” but she also spoke eloquently about domestic issues, including education and immigration. And she did it without mentioning President Obama’s name once.

Secretary of State Rice finished on a personal note, talking about her childhood in the Jim Crow South.

In Birmingham, Ala., she said, her parents couldn’t take her to the movies or to the Woolworth's lunch counter, but they were convinced that their daughter “can be the president of the United States if she wanted to be, and she becomes the secretary of State.”

Given the strong performance, that last line had some commentators parsing Rice’s future in the party.

“The next time Republicans are searching for a presidential candidate, rest assured: Condoleezza Rice will be a part of that conversation,” wrote Aaron Blake over at the Washington Post’s The Fix Blog.

Whether she’s interested remains to be seen.


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