Do you want to know is the real hero of the Democratic National Convention?

It's not Bill Clinton, though they really do love the guy here.

It’s not Jimmy Carter, though he got a lot of applause here.

It's not Al Gore or even Michael Moore, who excited more than a few folks here.

No, the real hero here isn't here and he hasn't been anywhere for more than 40 years. That’s because he's dead and he's been dead for a long time.

He's John F. Kennedy.

I understand it's hard to let go and it's easy to be nostalgic -- especially this being his town, a stone's throw from his museum, his birthplace, his life and his Camelot. But he's gone now and Democrats have a very tough time letting go now.

There are reminders of him are everywhere: in speeches and dedications, on signs, billboards and pictures here. Even in the goodie kit the Party provides journalists attending their party here, there’s a little book of Kennedy wit and wisdom.

More than a few have played off the themes of JFK then and the new JFK now.

There’s that picture of this JFK with that JFK from 42 summers ago. Just like the picture of that JFK with Bill Clinton from 41 summers ago.

Every convention, every city, every time, it’s the same story: Jack is back.

Yes, it's understandable. But it's weird.

Understandable because he was the last unmistakable Democratic hero and, though tarnished in time, he still shines after all that time. But weird because it's perpetuated generations of candidates who desperately try to copy his style, his hair, his hand-in-suit jacket flair.

It's like he's Elvis and neither he, nor they, will leave the auditorium.

The difference is that he has. And the sad reality is, they haven't.

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