The Honorable Tammy Duckworth
United States Senator from Illinois
Democratic National Convention
Thursday, August 20, 2020
Remarks as Prepared for Delivery
Good evening. I’m Tammy Duckworth.
When I first enlisted in the Army, I was eager to serve my country… yet anxious whether I’d be able to earn my way into the ranks.
But I earned my wings and later commanded my own air assault unit, learning that serving—and leading—in the military is both a privilege and a sacrifice.
To be a commander, you must always put your Troops first—because one day, you may order them to sacrifice everything for our great nation.
To do that, leaders must command their Troops’ respect—and be worthy of their pledge to protect and defend our Constitution, no matter the cost.
But military service doesn’t just take sacrifice from those in uniform—it’s required from their families, too.
My husband Bryan was the one who rushed to Walter Reed after I was wounded in Iraq.
He was the one holding my hand, waiting for me to wake up…
…when I finally did, he was my rock, getting me through those hours… weeks… months of unspeakable pain and unending surgeries.
He was my anchor as I relearned to walk, helping me through every step… every stumble.
Our military spouses hold their families together… praying for their loved one’s safety wherever they’re deployed, serving as caregivers to our disabled servicemembers, then picking up the pieces and starting again whenever the next tour… or the next war… arises.
Joe Biden understands these sacrifices, because he’s made them himself.
When his son Beau deployed to Iraq, his burden was also shouldered by his family.
Joe knows the fear military families live with because he’s felt that dread of never knowing if your deployed loved one is safe.
He understands their bravery because he had to muster that same strength every hour of every day Beau was overseas.
That’s the kind of leader our servicemembers deserve: one who understands the risks they face and who would actually protect them by doing his job as Commander-in-Chief.
Instead they have a Coward-in-Chief who won’t stand up to Vladamir Putin, read his daily intelligence briefings or even publicly admonish adversaries for reportedly putting bounties on our troops’ heads.
As President, Joe Biden would never let tyrants manipulate him like a puppet.
He would never pervert our military to stroke his own ego.
He would never turn his back on our troops or threaten them against Americans peacefully exercising their Constitutional rights.
Joe Biden would stand up for what’s right… stand tall for our troops… and stand strong against our enemies.
Because unlike Trump, Joe Biden has common decency.
He has common sense.
He can command… from both experience and from strength.
Donald Trump doesn’t deserve to call himself Commander-in-Chief for another four minutes—let alone another four years.
Our troops deserve better.
Our country deserves better.
If you agree, text “MORE” to 3-0-3-3-0 to elect Joe Biden: a leader who actually cares enough about America to lead.