Monday, February 18, 2008
Obama Uses Pre-packaged, Recycled Speeches
From Politico.com on February 17, 2008:
"Is there an echo in here?
Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) have not only endorsed each other’s campaigns, they also have provided verbatim inspiration for each other.
A rival campaign circulated a pair of YouTube links on Sunday that make the point vividly.
Here's Patrick at a rally for his gubernatorial campaign on Oct. 15, 2006, during the final stretch of his successful campaign against then-Massachusetts Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey (R):
“But her dismissive point, and I hear it a lot from her staff, is that all I have to offer is words — just words. ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, [applause and cheers] that all men are created equal.’ [Sustained applause and cheers.] Just words – just words! ‘We have nothing to fear but fear itself.’ Just words! ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.’ Just words! ‘I have a dream.’ Just words!”
Here’s Obama on Saturday night at the Democratic Party of Wisconsin’s Founders Day Gala in Milwaukee:
“Don’t tell me words don’t matter! ‘I have a dream.’ Just words. ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’ Just words! [Applause.] ‘We have nothing to fear but fear itself.’ Just words — just speeches!”
An Obama official said: “They're friends who share similar views and talk and trade good lines all the time.”
Obama apparently ad-libbed the remark, which was not in his text.
The Massachusetts governor said in a statement: “Sen. Obama and I are longtime friends and allies. We often share ideas about politics, policy and language. The argument in question, on the value of words in the public square, is one about which he and I have spoken frequently before. Given the recent attacks from Sen. Clinton, I applaud him responding in just the way he did.”
The Boston Globe reported last year that Obama had echoed the “just words” comments in a New Republic article, and noted “symbiotic friendship between Obama and Patrick.”
Obama made the comments in reference to Saul Alinsky, father of community organizing, while talking with Ryan Lizza for an article published last March.
The inspiration has run both ways between Obama and Patrick, both Harvard Law grads and longtime acquaintances.
Obama also used “Yes, we can!” — now a staple of his presidential campaign — as a rallying cry in his successful race for U.S. Senate in 2004.
The Globe reported: “After Patrick employed the same phrase at a state Democratic Convention in 2005, a reporter alerted the campaign that it was Obama’s signature line, and they went back to the drawing board," said Dan Payne, a Democratic strategist working for Patrick at the time. (Patrick would adopt “together we can” instead.)
In fact, posters visible in the YouTube video from 2006 say, “Deval Patrick” and “Together We Can.”