Friday, February 8, 2008

Caucusing for Barack Obama

The Democratic precinct caucuses here in Washington State begin in a little over twelve hours. If anybody has been reading this blog, you know I will be caucusing for Barack Obama.  As a head start:

  • Why American Veterans Are Voting For Barack Obama

    Barack Obama, the grandson of a World War II vet who fought in Patton's army, is passionate and committed to the issues that affect veterans and their families. Obama has pledged a "zero tolerance" policy to end veteran homelessness.

  • Barack Obama Has Important Legislative Experience

    Obama's campaign claims are not just rhetoric. Important legislative successes in both state and Congress demonstrate real ability "to deal with extremely complex issues, to reach across the aisle and to deal with diverse people."

  • Robert De Niro on Obama's 'Inexperience'

    “It's clear Barack Obama does not have the experience to let the special interests run the government. He wasn't experienced enough to authorize the invasion of Iraq. That's the kind of inexperience I can get used to."

  • Lawrence Lessig: Why I Support Barack Obama

    Comparing Obama and Clinton on character, integrity, and what each candidate would do: Barack Obama "represents the very best of who we are, the best of character, of integrity and ideals. And someone who opposed the war from the start."

  • Obama and Clinton: Not Trivial Differences

    Obama's approach to problems reflects a liberal libertarianism not shared by any other leading Democrat, certainly not Hillary Clinton. Clinton wants to help us even against our will (like mandating health insurance); Obama will help us help ourselves.

I went to see Barack Obama speak today. I am not usually excited about going to see candidates in person. What more could I find out listening to someone speak in person than I could by research? I found myself excited about hearing Obama in person. I was ready for some uplift! And indeed, he is an inspiring speaker, charging up a huge crowd even after a two-hour wait. 

One of the most telling moments for me was not anything he said. It was the point where he broke his rhetorical drive to reach for a bottle of water. Instead of drinking, he tossed it to somebody in the audience. Then he paused, saying: "Sit down there. Back off, give her room. Let those people through."

A young woman in the crowd immediately in front of the stage had fainted. Obama not only noticed, he took the time to make sure she was alright before returning his attention to his own speech.

All candidates say they are really in it for our sake. Few get a chance to demonstrate that they are paying more attention to the well-being of the people in front of them than they are to their own ego.