Overheard In The Spin Room: Barack Obama Edition

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There were a lot more Clinton surrogates in the spin room so it wasn't as easy to inject myself into an Obama surrogate conversation and when I was down there at first, my buddy David Axelrod was on Olbermann (I was gonna interrupt, but decided against it...)

I did speak to Rep. Xavier Becerra who was speaking on Obama's behalf. One interesting tidbot was that he's spoken to several congressional members who are likely to announce their support for Obama in the coming week. He did add that he suspects the Clinton camp could say the same.

In addition, on the topic of immigration, I asked Becerra why Obama didn't play up his stance in favor of driver's licenses for the undocumented at the townhall this morning -- and then he sort of dodged in the debate tonight -- considering it's a potent point of distinction he could use to eat into Clinton's lead among the hispanic community in California. Becerra defended Obama's answer tonight, which is essentially that the drivers license issue is "one of the manifestations of a broken system." He then went on to say that Clinton agrees that this wouldn't be an issue if there was comprehensive reform. So, not using it as a point of distinction at all then.

He went on to say he respects that Obama "says what's true and right even though, politically, it's difficult." Becerra said he was originally a Dodd supporter and so was quite disappointed when he said he did not support drivers licenses.

Tags: Barack Obama, Democratic debate (all tags)

Comments

11 Comments

Re: Overheard In The Spin Room:

In other words, he gave you a "stump" speech.

by reasonwarrior 2008-01-31 06:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Overheard In The Spin Room: Barack Obama Editi

Becerra seems like a reasonable person.

by OrangeFur 2008-01-31 06:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Overheard In The Spin Room: Barack Obama Editi

I live in Becerra's district.  There is a problem with unlicensed/uninsured drivers, yes, but most of these drivers drive too carefully to be much of a problem anyway!  We need to get these drivers citizenship first.  One of my co-workers got his Lexus smashed in to the tune of $12,000 on a main street around here the other day, and the culprit was an unlicensed driver....  But we need to realize that licensing won't help where some drivers can't afford insurance.  Only by gaining citizenship and being gainfully employed on a living wage, can formerly undocumented workers use our roads safely and legally.

by Zeitgeist9000 2008-01-31 06:35PM | 0 recs
Well as long as this is the Obama spin thread

That debate left with me two thoughts:

(1) Clinton failed to stop Obama's momentum, as the debate will be considered a tie, and the polls have been heading Obama's way.

(2) It will be interesting to see if Obama peeled off Latino votes. He definitely came across as the president who won't scapegoat immigrants (to use his word) or use them as political pawns.

So if the debate is seen by the media as a tie, but he manages to sway a few percent worth of Latino voters, then he wins on the 5th.

by s5 2008-01-31 06:43PM | 0 recs
Latino voters

Yes. Driving license is an important issue for Latinos in California but certainly not every Latinos are undocumented especially those who would vote for Hillary on Tuesday.

I find it somehow troublesome to assume that driving license for undocumented workers will be THE solution to appeal to Latino voters in California. There are so many other issues that Latinos care, too. We are multi-dimensional people.

by praxis1 2008-01-31 07:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Overheard In The Spin Room: Barack Obama Editi

I don't understand Becerra's comment. Dodd opposed driver's licenses.

by desmoulins 2008-01-31 08:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Overheard In The Spin Room: Barack Obama Editi

Obama is being cagey on the licenses because even though it may help him with Latinos now (though I think how much is really debatable), it is a sure fire loser in the general election.

The Republicans will take any footage of Obama supporting licenses for illegals and bat him over the head with it repeatedly. Over and over.

I saw this whole debate in NY first-hand and watched an extremely popular governor with a huge win in a blue blue state go from the next best thing since sliced bread to extremely unpopular in a matter of weeks, due in large part to the licenses issues.

I don't know why Obama keeping this low key is a shocker to anyone.

by GregNYC 2008-01-31 09:22PM | 0 recs
Bridge to the 21st C- David Axelrad

Todd

Since he' your  buddy, David Axelrad, ask him how he likes having Barack make fun of his 1996 handiwork for the Clinton-Gore campaign....The Bridge to the 21st century.

It makes me laugh.  I was head of the Women's desk for the NY Clinton Gore campaign.  We were going to win a landslide....so I spent an absurd amount of time involved in an event to tout that slogan.  I thought it was idiotic at the time and still do.

So back then I thought the slogan was ridiculous pablum.....so it's highly ironic that the Axelrad chose a candidate who spends a lot of time talking the same pablum Axelrad himself spouted long ago.  

by debcoop 2008-01-31 10:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Bridge to the 21st C- David Axelrad

Can it be that bad a slogan if I still remember it 12 years later?  That campaign did such a brilliant job of framing that many people believe, to this day, that Bob Dole actually said he wanted to build a bridge to the past.

by Steve M 2008-02-01 06:06AM | 0 recs
Re: Bridge to the 21st C- David Axelrad

My point was that Obama is making fun of a slogan associated withthe Clinton's....but his very own campaign manager creted it.

It just vindicate show empty Axelrad's take is  

by debcoop 2008-02-01 03:16PM | 0 recs
Re: Overheard In The Spin Room: Barack Obama Editi

They both looked good in this head-to-head debate. Civility reigned.

Hillary was on her game. Obama did well to force her to try to defend her Iraq war authorization, but failed to confront her about her failure to read the NIE report.

Obama had a great point in noting that the renowned businessman, Romney, had not obtained much return on his campaign investment. Hillary had a nifty line that a Clinton had cleaned up after a Bush presidency and that a Clinton would now do the same.

Both won. Hillary showed her excellent skills in outlining policy positions. Obama did OK and certainly did benefit a lot just from the additional exposure this debate.gave him.

homer www.altara.blogspot.com

by Homer 2008-02-01 05:50AM | 0 recs

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