Emanuel, Warren, Kaine get speaking slots at convention

Democrats are poised to feature the party's rising stars from crucial swing states at next month's national convention, along with popular Massachusetts lawmakers expected to denounce presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's tenure leading the state.

Former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine, locked in the midst of a high-profile and tightly contested U.S. Senate race, will be joined by Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland in Democrats' push to highlight swing states, according to a report Monday by The Washington Post.

Meanwhile, former presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry (Mass.), Gov. Deval Patrick (Mass.) and U.S. Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren are all expected to earn prime speaking slots at the convention — and use that position to knock Romney's record in their home state.

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Democrats are also planning to feature some of the younger up-and-comers in the party. In addition to keynote speaker and San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro — the youngest mayor of a major American city, and a Hispanic-American — speakers include Kamala Harris, the African and Asian American California attorney general, and Gov. Martin O'Malley of Maryland, rumored among the 2016 presidential candidates.

There should also be some red meat for the base, with Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel — a former Illinois congressman and Obama chief of staff — expected to be awarded a prime speaking slot.

Democrats had previously announced that first lady Michelle Obama and former President Clinton would anchor their Tuesday and Wednesday speaking schedules, respectively.

The Democratic convention begins Sept. 4, with President Obama set to speak Sept. 6, the final night of the convention, at Charlotte, N.C.'s NFL stadium.