Posted by Curt on 19 February, 2008 at 4:05 pm. 12 comments already!

Mary Katherine Ham makes a great point about this Obama plagerizing story, which is getting a bit bigger today but I will get to that in a moment. First MKH:

[W]hat the story takes a whack at, effectively, is Obama’s authenticity, which is his No. 1 selling point. Hillary’s camp is smart to play up the fact that the supreme orator, the Messiah of American politics, the man of change above all else, could really just be another politician with a flair for speechifying, a calculating player with no compunction about inspiring with rehashed copy if it suits his purposes.

This incident will prompt much closer looks at Obama’s words from here on out, which will naturally be rougher than the positively orgasmic reviews he’s been getting up until now. This is good for Hillary and good for the GOP in the general if he ends up being the nominee.

Now if it was just the one incident between friends many could dismiss it all as one time thing. Not anymore:

And the Big O:

Patrick tried to explain things but actually dug the hole a bit deeper:

“In a telephone interview on Sunday, Mr. Patrick said that he and Mr. Obama first talked about the attacks from their respective rivals last summer, when Mrs. Clinton was raising questions about Mr. Obama’s experience, and that they discussed them again last week,” the Times’ Jeff Zeleny wrote. “Patrick said he told Mr. Obama that he should respond to the criticism, and he shared language from his campaign with Mr. Obama’s speechwriters.”

But Obama was quoted using Patrick’s language before the Summer of 2007…

Patrick in June 2006, at the Massachusetts Democratic party convention: “I am not asking anybody to take a chance on me. I am asking you to take a chance on your own aspirations.”

Obama one year later, as quoted in USA Today: “I am not asking anyone to take a chance on me. I am asking you to take a chance on your own aspirations.”

It doesn’t end there, the thing just gets better and better:

Patrick In 2006: “We Can Disagree With Each Other Without Being Disagreeable.” “By showing that we can disagree with each other without being disagreeable.” (Gov. Deval Patrick, Remarks On Election Night At Hynes Convention Center, Boston, MA, 11/6/06)

Obama In 2008: “We Can Disagree With Each Other Without Being Disagreeable.” (Anna Webb and Brian Murphy, “Obama Wows, Inspires Crowd At Packed Arena: ‘And They Told Me There Were No Democrats In Idaho,'” The Idaho Statesman, 2/3/08)

Apparently this is all coming back to David Axelrod, a political strategist, who is working for Obama:

“The man who has honed that message for both candidates is veteran Chicago political strategist David Axelrod, who guided Obama’s Senate campaign and Patrick’s gubernatorial bid and is now a top strategist on Obama’s presidential effort.”

In 2004 Axelrod was John Edwards senior strategist and magically these same lines are being regurgitated by Obama:

Edwards –

“I haven’t spent most of my life in politics, but I’ve spent enough time in Washington to know how much we need to change it.” (Sasha Issenberg, “Obama Borrows From Edwards,” The Boston Globe’s “Political Intelligencer” Blog, www.boston.com, 1/5/08)

Obama –

“I know I haven’t spent a lot of time learning the ways of Washington. But I’ve been there long enough to know that the ways of Washington must change.” (Sasha Issenberg, “Obama Borrows From Edwards,” The Boston Globe’s “Political Intelligencer” Blog, www.boston.com, 1/5/08)


Edwards –

“Hard work should be valued in this country, so we’re going to reward work, not just wealth.” (Former Sen. John Edwards, Remarks To The Democratic National Convention, Boston, MA, 7/28/04)

Obama –

“We shouldn’t just be respecting wealth in this country – we should be respecting work.” (Sasha Issenberg, “Obama Borrows From Edwards,” The Boston Globe’s “Political Intelligencer” Blog, www.boston.com, 1/5/08)

Edwards –

“Reject The Tired, Old, Hateful, Negative Politics Of The Past … Embrace The Politics Of Hope.” “[T]he American people, you can reject the tired, old, hateful, negative politics of the past. And instead you can embrace the politics of hope, the politics of what’s possible because this is America, where everything is possible.” (Former Sen. John Edwards, Remarks To The Democratic National Convention, Boston, MA, 7/28/04)

Obama –

“Democrat Barack Obama said Sunday it is difficult … ‘to break out of the politics of the past,’ when the country was badly divided and Democrats lost control of Congress …” (Charles Babington, “Obama Ties Clinton To Divisive ‘Politics Of The Past,'” The Associated Press, 2/10/08)

Even Edwards wife noticed this back in August:

“You listen to the language of what people say, particularly Obama, who seems to be using a lot of John’s 2004 language, which is maybe not surprising since one of his speechwriters was one of our speechwriters, his media guy was our media guy. These people know John’s mantra as well as anybody could know it. They’ve moved from ‘hope is on the way’ to ‘the audacity of hope.’ I’m constantly hearing things in a familiar tone.”

Lets hear MKH once more:

the supreme orator, the Messiah of American politics, the man of change above all else, could really just be another politician with a flair for speechifying, a calculating player with no compunction about inspiring with rehashed copy if it suits his purposes.

So all of Obama’s best lines, those that inspire, are not even his own. Meanwhile his wife uses her own stuff and it makes everyone cringe. Now many on the left will try to dismiss this as just being something that happens all the time in politics. But I would submit that the man is running on his ability to make these speeches. To inspire. Thats the core of his campaign and it is now turning out to be a lie. He has a senior strategist on his staff who is feeding him lines that have worked in the past and telling him to sell them as his own.

It’s all a sham.

UPDATE

Well well well:

Despite the hard contest between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, party leaders keep telling Democratic-leaning voters that they have two good candidates. They are right, but one of them may well be a Republican.

Far from the pumped-up Obama rallies, centrists who voted for John Kerry last time now say they are considering John McCain — especially if the Democrat is the vaporous Obama. At least that’s what many are telling me — and I’m telling myself.

One friend said he’d vote for the New York senator, and if she’s not the candidate, then McCain. When I reminded him that he doesn’t like Hillary, he shrugged. Another acquaintance e-mailed, “Hillary is to me extremely unlikable, but I do not regard likability as a qualification.”

The notion that many Clinton voters cannot be easily transferred to Obama contradicts much “expert” opinion. But a Super Tuesday exit poll suggested there is something to it. While 52 percent of Obama’s supporters were amenable to a Clinton candidacy, only 49 percent of Clinton voters said they’d be happy with the Illinois senator, according to the survey by Harvard University’s Institute of Politics.

And at that time, the news media were still lavishing love on Obama. That situation is about to end. “He’s the fashion plate of the moment,” an editorial page editor remarked, “but fashion week is over.”

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