CHARLOTTE -- A live blog breaking down President Barack Obama's speech at the Democratic Convention Thursday night.
11:04 p.m. -- As Bruce Springsteen's "We Take Care of Our Own" plays on the PA, Obama's family joins him on the stage; the confetti flies.
11:03 p.m. -- Big finish: "America, I never said this journey would be easy, and I won't promise that now. Yes, our path is harder -- but it leads to a better place. Yes our road is longer -- but we travel it together."
11:01 p.m. -- Obama begins the wrap-up by saying he has never been more hopeful about the country or his presidency.
After telling stories of inspiring people, Obama says: "If you share that faith with me -- if you share that hope with me -- I ask you tonight for your vote."
10:59 p.m. -- Obama acknowledges his decisions haven't always been popular: "If the critics are right that I've made all my decisions based on polls, then I must not be very good at reading them."
10:58 p.m. -- "I recognize that times have changed since I first spoke to this convention. The times have changed -- and so have I."
For one thing: "I'm no longer just a candidate. I'm the President."
10:56 p.m, -- Obama urges those who backed him in 2008 to stick with him in 2012, despite tough times: "If you turn away now ... if you buy into the cynicism that the change we fought for isn't possible ... well, change will not happen."
Warns that others will try to "buy this election."
10:54 p.m. -- Addressing a frequent Republican complaint about Democrats, Obama says: "We don't think government can solve all our problems. But we don't think that government is the source of all our problems."
10:52 p.m. -- Obama offers the Democratic view of things: "We also believe in something called citizenship -- a word at the very heart of our founding, at the very essence of our democracy; the idea that this country only works when we accept certain obligations to one another, and to future generations."
10:50 p.m. -- Framing the election, Obama summarizes his view of Republican philosophy: "Over and over, we have been told by our opponents that bigger tax cuts and fewer regulations are the only way; that since government can't do everything, it should do almost nothing."
10:48 p.m. -- Blasts Mitt Romney's tax cut plan, saying it will worsen the debt and wreck middle class programs. Also hits the GOP on Medicare.
10:47 p.m, - Turning back to the economy, Obama says: "You can choose a future where we reduce our deficit without sticking it to the middle class."
10:46 p.m, -- Like all incumbent presidents, Obama cites his opponents' lack of foreign policy chops: "My opponent and his running mate are new to foreign policy, but from all that we've seen and heard, they want to take us back to an era of blustering and blundering that cost America so dearly."
10:44 p.m. -- Praises veterans, says he is strengthening global alliances -- though "challenges remain."
On Israel: "Our commitment to Israel's security must not waver, and neither must our pursuit of peace."
10:42 p.m. -- Obama shifts to foreign policy: "In a world of new threats and new challenges, you can choose leadership that has been tested and proven."
He cites ending the war in Iraq, and winding down the war in Afghanistan, and says -- to big applause, chants of "U-S-A" -- "Osama bin Laden is dead."
10:37 p.m. -- Obama begins to focus on his record, saying the nation is "getting back to basics."
Cites the recovery of the auto industry, in-sourcing of jobs, trade deals, and manufacturing jobs, alternative energy development, and education. Along the way, he dings "my opponent" on these items; he has yet to utter the word "Romney."
"We're offering a better path," Obama says, keeping with the theme.
10:33 p.m. -- Obama allows that the economy is still not great, and seeks patience: "The truth is, it will take more than a few years for us to solve challenges that have built up over decades."
Also alludes to Franklin Roosevelt and the Great Depression.
10:32 p.m, -- Obama goes after the Republican vision, saying it's been the same for 30 years: "Have a surplus? Try a tax cut .. Deficit too high? Try another ... Feel a cold coming on? Take two tax cuts, roll back some regulations, and call us in the morning!"
10:30 p.m. -- Obama talks about his and the Democrats' vision, stressing a middle class he sees as threatened, especially after the 2008 financial meltdown.
10:28 p.m. -- Obama sets the theme of the speech: "On every issue, the choice you face won't just be between two candidates or two parties -- it will be a choice between two different paths for America -- a choice between two fundamentally different visions for the future."
10:26 p.m, -- He formally accepts the nomination; more "four more years" chants.
Also admits the hope of his 2008 campaign "has been tested,"
10:24 p.m. -- First a nod to family: "Michelle, I love you so much." Also reminds daughters Malia and Sasha they have to go to school in the morning. Also thanks Biden.
10:23 p.m. -- After a video, first lady Michelle Obama introduces "the love of my life," President Obama -- and there he is.
The crowd chants: "Four more years."
10:10 p.m. -- Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., introduces Obama, asking voters to give him "four more years to finish the job he started."
By David Jackson, USA TODAY
USA TODAY, Gannett