Saturday, July 14, 2007

RUNNING BARACK OBAMA'S CAMPAIGN (PT.3) -- Who IS Running His Campaign?

Some of you, drawn by our ongoing feature, Running Barack Obama's Campaign, have lately visited this site searching for clues to Obama’s campaign staff.

Good, it’s time people started wondering. Because, frankly, to this point they rate a C-

If you're looking to contact them (hint: find the websites for their consulting firms, email them there) direct them here, too. I’ve listed his team below starting with David Axelrod.

Axelrod’s TV presence has been decidedly underwhelming. A low-watt, not very suave media presence, he delivers determinedly content-free spin. Is that the strategy, to dance while Hillary closes in on the nomination? Described as "the strategist at Obama’s right hand, perhaps the best-known Democratic consultant working outside of Washington, D.C., equally adept at sensing the right metaphor for high-minded aspirations and at finding the vulnerable spot to savage an opponent," none of those qualities has yet been on display.

Besides fundraising, what is there? Where are the articulate, passionate public policy addresses? Lincoln left a raft of writings from barnstorming speeches prior to his election that gave every indication he was, in the Emersonian sense, a Representative Man. Brilliant analyses of the constitutional questions of the day.

Barack Obama needs to do something similar. There's plenty to talk about. For example...

With the next election ours for the losing, Democrats can’t rest. Some big-time inoculation is needed immediately in the ever-so-likely event of another terror attack.

That means a rhetorical preventive strike. He needs to say LOUDLY and repeatedly that the country remains in jeopardy, that the politically unglamorous work of dismantling terror cells, of penetrating and neutralizing our enemies has yet to be done. That this administration's decision to fight a noisy, unnecessary war rather than focus on that difficult, secret work has left us more, not less vulnerable. While we've been fortunate not to have had a terror attack since 9/11, this administration has made the job of drying up support for Al Qaeda and rolling up its organizational base that much more difficult. But it's a job that must be done, and he intends to make certain it gets done.

America needs to know the terrorists love these Republicans the way Fire loves Gasoline.

They, the terrorists, more than anyone else have benefitted from this administration's ham-fisted approach, so we should not be surprised when they do everything in their power, including another terror attack, to bring another version of Geo. W. Bush back in ’08.

Okay, the rest of the Obama campaign team seem to be ...
Robert Gibbs, communications director, a campaign veteran;
David Plouffe, an Axelrod partner who worked on Obama's 2004 Senate campaign;
Bill Burton, national press secretary for the House Democrats' midterm campaign;
Julianna Smoot, finance director for John Edwards' 2004 campaign and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee in 2006
Peter Giangreco, a Chicago-based media consultant and veteran of the Iowa caucuses;
Cassandra Butts, who first met Obama at the financial aid office at Harvard;
Betsy Myers, chief operating officer. Executive director of the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government (and sister of Dee Dee Myers, Clinton's first press secretary)...
But the group most tightly circled around Obama is a longstanding one, made up of old friends who share an understanding of how he works. Key players include straight-talking Valerie Jarrett, a veteran of Chicago Democratic circles and John Rogers, head of Ariel Capital Management, a friend of Michelle Obama's brother Craig Robinson, with whom Rogers played basketball at Princeton…
If Barry isn’t up to honing his sound-bite rhetoric he might just as usefully be letting us see his thinking in crafted addresses. Fundraising does not a campaign make.

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