Archive for the ‘2008 presidential campaign’ Category

Campaign Poetry: Lined up at the urinals

May 19, 2010

“The candidates lined up at the urinals, Giuliani next to McCain next to Huckabee, the rest all in a row. The debate was soon to start, so they were taking care of business – and laughing merrily at the one guy who wasn’t there. Poking fun at him, mocking him, agreeing how much they disliked him. Then Willard Mitt Romney walked into the bathroom and overheard them, bringing on a crashing silence.”

John Heilemann & Mark Halperin – Game Change. Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime (p. 293).

Campaign Poetry: I found my own voice

May 12, 2010

“Racing out of the hotel, they sped to Manchester for Hillary’s victory speech. ‘I came tonight with a very, very full heart,’ she began. ‘Over the last week I listened to you, and in the process, I found my own voice.’

When it was over, Hillary marched down a hallway backstage, with her husband and Chelsea at her side. She looked like a quarterback who’s just completed a last-second Hail Mary pass in overtime – pointing at her aides, high-fiving them, smiling from ear to ear. ‘This is amazing,’ one of them said. ‘I’m so proud of you! You did this! You did this!’

Hillary nodded and puffed out her chest.

‘I get really tough when people fuck with me,’ she said.”

John Heilemann & Mark Halperin – Game Change. Obama and the Clintons, McCain and Palin, and the Race of a Lifetime (p. 190).

Campaign Poetry: Cultivated Image

May 4, 2010

“How did they do it? Contrary to their own carefully cultivated image, the money did not grow at the grass roots. ‘It wasn’t the Internet,’ said Pritzker. ‘We tapped everybody and did every event we could. He’d do seven events in New York, back-to-back-to-back-to-back.’ Internet donations totaled less than 15 percent of Obama’s fund-raising through 2007. Money only started to cascade through the Web after Iowa in early January 2008, and it would take another several months, as the primaries dragged on, for the grass roots to represent half the campaign’s fund-raising.”

Richard Wolffe – Renegade. The Making of Barack Obama (p. 74).

Campaign Poetry: Hardened

May 2, 2010

“Obama’s ambivalence and detachment could be a strength in politics and even in his personal life. It hardened him against failure, protecting him from the pain of defeat, or an absent father. But it also served to isolate him, pushing away those who could sustain him, as he strove to succeed. The price of political success seemed a certain sum of personal failure.”

Richard Wolffe – Renegade. The Making of Barack Obama (p. 123).

Campaign Poetry: Self-conscious staging

April 30, 2010

“Were the stories and the scenes less genuine for all the cameras and the self-conscious staging? Maybe so. But there was no way to win as a renegade without mastering a campaign’s language and look, its conventions and protocols. They were taking enough risks by running against the Clintons; anything else was beyond their powers of self-control and team discipline. For any other insurgent candidate, there would have been no press, no public, and no money for TV ads. That would have forced him to take more risks and create more opportunities. But even six months before the first votes of the 2008 election, there was no free-wheeling phase for Obama. His campaign was a magic lantern show, projecting something once real, and now sometimes hidden, onto a large blank screen.”

Richard Wolffe – Renegade. The Making of Barack Obama (p. 79).

Campaign Poetry: Biden’s hair

April 29, 2010

“As he turned away from me, I witnessed a classic Biden moment. Frank Greer, a legendary Democratic media consultat, was helping us by volunteering as our stage manager at all four debates. Frank had a full head of thick gray hair, and as the folically challenged Biden grabbed him to thank him on the way out, he said, ‘Man, Frank, if I only had your hair I could have been the number one guy on this ticket!’ And with that, our vice presidential nominee triumphantly entered his motorcade for the drive to the airport.”

David Plouffe – The Audacity to Win (p. 349).

Campaign Poetry: The new adage

April 28, 2010

“When I was coming up in politics, the saying was, Don’t put anything on paper you don’t want to see on the front page of the New York Times. The new adage should be, Don’t say anything you don’t want posted on YouTube and whipped around the Internet at warp speed. We were spared to an extent in that there was no video of his comments in California, and the audio recording was not great quality. The words were still replayed incessantly, but because online video is now king, the clip didn’t get the play it might have.”

David Plouffe – The Audacity to Win (p. 217).


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