CHARLOTTE, N.C. - He did it in Boston. He did it in Springfield. He did it in Denver. And he'll do it again Thursday night.
U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin has been the go-to, good-luck charm President Barack Obama has turned to over and over again on his path to the presidency when it's been time to deliver a major speech.
Durbin (D-IL) introduced Obama first to Democrats at their 2004 convention in Boston, when he delivered his breakthrough "red-state, blue-state" speech as a U.S. Senate candidate.
In February 2007, Durbin introduced Obama as the unlikely presidential candidate from the steps of the Old State Capitol in Springfield. And in August 2008, when Obama wrapped up his party's nomination, Durbin introduced him to the crowd in a Denver football stadium.
The Springfield Democrat said he will be thrust into that comfortable role again Thursday night, introducing Obama before he delivers his acceptance speech before the Democratic National Convention.
"I think back in Boston. Nobody had ever heard of him. They didn't now how to pronounce that name. In Springfield, when I introduced him, he was launching a presidential campaign against Hillary Clinton, for goodness sakes, and there weren't a lot of people who thought he had much of a chance. But I introduced him and off he went to become president," Durbin told reporters after a breakfast meeting of Illinois delegates at the Democratic National Convention.
"When we were in Denver, it was a humbling experience to stand in that stadium with tens of thousands of people and know he was about to carry our standard into the November election," Durbin continued. "I hope I'd bring him the same good fortune after this introduction as he's had in previous times."