ST. PAUL, Minn. - Tonight, John McCain accepts the title he has fought twice to win -- Republican presidential nominee.
As he prepares to savor that victory, his running mate is no doubt enjoying the positive reviews from one of the most anticipated speeches of this campaign.
Although Thursday is McCain's, Wednesday night, the crowd belonged to Sarah Palin.
The vice presidential pick came to the stage praised by candidates McCain defeated earlier this year.
They also defended Palin from attacks that ranged from questioning her experience to her mothering.
"How dare they question how Sarah Palin can have time to be vice president and raise her children. How dare they!" said former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani.
Then the Alaska governor came out swinging with a look at how she earned the nickname "Sarah Barracuda."
"Here's a little news flash for all those reporters and commentators: I'm not going to Washington to seek their good opinion -- I'm going to Washington to serve the people of this country," Palin told the cheering crowd.
She also told her story and introduced America to her family.
"We met in high school, and two decades and five children later, he's still my guy," Palin said of her husband Todd.
She described her work as a reformer who worked to shrink government.
"While I was at it, I got rid of a few things in the governor's office that I didn't believe our citizens should have to pay for. That luxury jet was over the top. I put it on e-bay," she said, receiving laughter and applause.
To answer critics of her experience, she compared her job as a mayor to Barack Obama's former work in Chicago.
"I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a 'community organizer,' except that you have actual responsibilities," she said.
Then she compared Obama's gift of oration to McCain's decades of service.
"For a season, a gifted speaker can inspire with his words. For a lifetime, John McCain has inspired with his deeds," she said.
Finally, her running mate joined the Palins for a quick appearance on stage.
"Don't you think we made the right choice for vice president?" McCain said.
Palin has only two months to answer that question in the minds of the voters.