To shouts of "Yes we can," Democrats nominated Barack Obama on Wednesday as their presidential candidate in a historic first for a black American, backed by his ex-rivals Bill and Hillary Clinton.
Former President Bill Clinton, who has been slow to warm to Obama after the bruising primary battle that his wife lost, gave Obama an unwavering seal of approval in a speech to a packed convention hall where delegates cheered his appearance for so long that he had to ask them to sit down.
"My fellow Democrats, I say to you: Barack Obama is ready to lead America and to restore American leadership in the world," former President Clinton told flag-waving delegates who interrupted him repeatedly with roars of approval.
"Barack Obama is ready to be president of the United States," he said.
And earlier, in an emotional moment of unity, Sen. Hillary Clinton strode onto the floor of the party's national convention during a roll call of the states and formally asked Democratic delegates to suspend their count and approve Obama's nomination by acclamation.
"With eyes firmly fixed on the future, in the spirit of unity, with the goal of victory, with faith in our party and our country, let's declare together in one voice right here, right now, that Barack Obama is our candidate and he will be our president," she said to raucous cheers.
Her request was quickly accepted by the convention's presiding official, House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California.
When Pelosi pounded a gavel to declare Obama the nominee, delegates held hands together up high, danced and swayed back and forth to the song "Love Train" in celebration of the moment.
"Yes we can," the crowd chanted. "Obama!"
Pelosi announced a short time later that Obama had accepted the nomination and would tell the convention that himself in his acceptance speech on Thursday night, Reuters reported.