Ms. O'Neill was one of several big city mayors (in a row) to speak to California delegates. Her remarks are reprinted below:
"Good morning to all of you. I can't tell you how proud I was to be with you last night. Last night was a wonderful experience, my first experience at a convention so, it was a great night.
"I want to tell you that Long Beach is a city of 440,000 people, we are the fifth largest in California and the 32nd largest in the United States. Many of you don't know that because we are in the southwest corner of Los Angeles County. We are a beautiful coastal city and since 1989 we have lost 50,000 jobs with the downsizing of military and Douglas, McDonnell Douglas, with a two billion dollar impact.
"We needed help. We needed change. What do you do when you can no longer rely on your economic generators. We looked at our assets: waterfront, beautiful climate, but we needed help and I must tell you that this administration helped the City of Long Beach. We remembered, they have three words: we had the opportunity, we accepted the responsibility and we are believing in community.
"HUD helped us with a loan. Thank God for HUD. EDA helped us. The COPS grant gave us safer streets. Today we are emphasizing international trade, we are international tourism and technology. We are turning our city around.
"Our President knows the strength of our nation comes from the strength of our cities, and he does something about it. We will no more have the good old days, we will have better new days.
"And don't listen to the CAVE people, those are Citizens Against Virtually Everything. [some applause]
"We will be part of the new generation in our city and remember, Mr. President, we thank you for your foresight, your compassion, your leadership, but also to Mr. President and Mr. Vice President, please remember that the Golden State will elect the Golden Slate." [cheers]