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Michelle Obama, Stumping in a Small State


Michelle Obama , wife of Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama , smiles after being introduced before delivering remarks for her husband on the campus of Delaware State University in Dover, Del., Thursday Jan. 31, 2008. (AP).

By Krissah Williams
WILMINGTON, Del. - Delawareans are accustomed to being ignored in the days before big primary elections. So it was with great fanfare that Michelle Obama swept through the 30-mile-wide state today to rally her husband's troops.

The small state, with only 23 delegates, pales in importance when compared to goliaths such as California and New York that will also vote next week. Still, Obama's campaign is recruiting 1,000 volunteers to walk the streets here next Tuesday. Turning out voters in places such as Delaware and Kansas is part of his campaign's strategy in the coming battle with Sen. Hillary Clinton, whose national polling and name recognition still surpass Obama's, though the race is tightening.

"Usually we're pretty ambivalent about the primaries because the candidates don't pay much attention to us," said Peter Odell, who attended the rally here with his wife Joan. "This is the first campaign rally I've ever attended."

Odell, 67, along with more than 1,000 other people, filled the Grand Opera House downtown, and Michelle Obama roused him and others out of their seats with a stump speech about her husband proving nay-sayers wrong that made the case for her husband with a down-home, I-feel-your-pain folksiness.

"You remember last summer, everybody started talking about this race is over," she said. "There was an air of inevitability, and it wasn't Barack Obama. I was like, wait a minute, I didn't even get to talk to anyone. What they were saying then was there was no way Barack Obama could raise the money. And then the first quarter came around and the reports came out and low and behold Barack raised the money....Then it became building a political organization....We built a phenomenal organization, and we're still building it and you're feeling it right here in Delaware. Then we were told organization didn't count.

"Essentially in politics the bar is set, and then you meet the bar, and they move the bar. The bar is moving and shifting all over the place. The irony of where we are...is that's what's happening with regular folks on the ground everyday. They are working their fingers to the bone and the bar keeps moving and it's not fair it's not right."

Her message resonated with Nikki Lane, a mother in her 30s who is still on the fence between Obama and Clinton. "It feels good to know that their experience is our experience," she said. "They understand the middle class."

Obama closed the speech with a jab at the Clintons, though she did not mention them by name. Quality of life "has been declining through both Democratic and Republican administrations," she said. "That is not a dig. It's just the truth as I see it."

By Web Politics Editor  |  January 31, 2008; 5:34 PM ET
 
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Posted by: Anonymous | April 16, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse

The last thing we need in the White House is the overwheming rally screamer Michelle Obama and her Junior Senator husband Barack. She reminds me of Chaka Khan. He on the other hand is just a rally cheerleader with no substance. He speaks of change, but He has never specified exactly what kind of "change" he will bring to Washington. Perhaps "pocket change." I have learned through his media biased treatment, that he is simply a lap dog in the making.

Posted by: ralucio | March 1, 2008 7:55 PM | Report abuse

I have been a Clinton supporter since this election process began; here recently I started to actually listen to Obama and I am beginning to feel what he stands for but am still sticking by Clinton...but in regards to Mrs. Obama introducing her husband as "her baby's daddy" come on now, that's a bit ghetto!

Posted by: D_votedmommy | February 22, 2008 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Michelle just stuck her foot in her mouth.She said "for the first time in my life I'm proud to be an American".It's all over the blogs.This will hurt big time.

Posted by: annamoeterrace | February 18, 2008 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Barack Obama has a secret weapon: MICHELLE! This speech from Wilmington Delaware last Thursday was and is absolutely electrifying--not only because of her style, but because of the substance that backs up all the talk. Here is a link to the complete video:

http://video.aol.com/video-detail/web-extra-michelle-obama-in-del/3903367509

Check it out--Brilliant!

Posted by: shelchris | February 3, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

gatorsn09 I am beginning to suspect that the shoving of Barack Obama down our throat is some sort of government conspiracy or psyops experiment. Not many people are aware that Army Psyops interned with CNN but here is an article about it: http://www.tenc.net/articles/devries/psyops.htm
All of this Obama mania smacks of a Jim Jones experiment.

First of all we all watched the wtc go down by Muslim extremists and though he claims not to be a Muslim his name is Barack Hussein Obama. Second of all he is an admitted drug user of hard drugs, thirdly he has minimal experience and the experience he does have has been a failure. He's let public housing recipients freeze, blocked the bill on banning partial birth abortion which only passed after he left the state senate and then just voted present 200 times while in the state senate, and now while in congress if he does not want to vote on a bill he just does not show up! This is inline with the over fifty parking tickets that he failed to pay in law school that were paid only when he decided to run for president. Obama is a big impulsive baby only proved by his determination to run for president despite the knowledge that we all had that Hillary Clinton was going to run for President. He is an opportunist, instead of being loyal to a friend he stabbed her in the back and it is my belief that if Obama is elected he will stab the whole democratic party in the back and sell out to huge corporate interests. While we are always hearing that Hillary Clinton was on the board of walmart so was Michelle Obama. The one thing that disturbs me about Barack Obama is that he attacks Hillary Clinton on the same subjects and the same mistakes that he has made.

I want to see an African American in the white house soon but not this man. Unfortunately I'm probably going to have to wait for the republicans to deliver a black president. I'm looking at the vice governer of Maryland and he looks pretty good!

Posted by: alwaysthinking | February 2, 2008 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Obama is a joke, why does any person take him seriously ? He isn't going to be President, he stands no chance at all. For what ever reason CNN pushes this guy to the forefront, maybe Obama promised Lou Dobbs a shot at vice president ?. Dobbs has illusions of grandor lately, maybe Obama & him made a deal. After next Tuesday Obama will be back in Chicago with his tail between his legs. What a farce

Posted by: gatorsn09 | February 2, 2008 2:22 AM | Report abuse

The corrupt clinton was a great co-President. Thanks to her incompetence, we got a Republican Senate by 8 seats for the first time in 8 years; a Republican House by 54 seats for the first time in 40 years; 12 additional Governorships; and thousands of state wide offices.

Other than that, she has never solved a problem - easy or difficult.

Other than that, what did the corrupt clinton's give us in the 8 years they were last in the Presidential office?

That is besides a new 'scandal a day'.

What good is her alleged 'experience' if you continually exercise 'BAD JUDGMENT'.

She voted with Bush to authorize the war in Iraq, and now she claims she was 'misled'. Rubbish.

She believed her husband and blamed it all on a 'vast right wing conspiracy' (sounds rather paranoid), but when all the dust had settled it was her husband who lowered his zipper and left a stain on the blue dress and the presidency.

Will she be able to control him in the next round? I doubt it, she can't even keep him on the porch during the campaign.

The economy during the creepy, corrupt clinton years was in no great position. The bubble burst at the end of their reign in one scandal after anouther - Enron, Global Crossing, etc. etc. etc.

Posted by: Fred8 | February 1, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Quality of life has declined under a Democratic administration???

I live in New Orleans, and my businesses have never done as well as they did during the Clinton years; not before or since. We all did well during the largest economic expansion in my lifetime (I'm 2 years younger than Hillary.)

What is hardest for me to take is that neocon Republicans have created a fallacious branding of Senator Clinton, and so many people seem to have bought it. She is a hard working, passionate and enlightened individual. To me, a great ticket for our party in 2008 would be Clinton/Obama.

Posted by: m_nunziante | February 1, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Posted by one of Obama's supporters above:
"I did notice an absence of issues and so forth but the energy was palpatable.(sic)"

We don't need glib speeches and rousing sermons; except perhaps by Hillary's vice President.

We need a President conversant with all the issues, who will be a strong Commander-in-Chief, and a competent Chief Executive. Hillary is the best person right now, the vague attacks from her antagonists notwithstanding

Posted by: m_nunziante | February 1, 2008 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Michelle worked for MAYOR DALEY in Chicago .. she lives in their house they bought for $300,000 under market value from Antoin "Tony" Rezko a Chicago dealmaker and campaign fundraiser. He was indicted in October on influence-peddling charges.

Posted by: Swannie2 | February 1, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Michelle Obama said "Obama closed the speech with a jab at the Clintons, though she did not mention them by name. Quality of life "has been declining through both Democratic and Republican administrations," she said. "That is not a dig. It's just the truth as I see it."
Ok. Where are the facts? The stats? Where is she seeing this? From the fact that she and Barack couldn't buy a $2million house but had to settle for a $1.6million house? Clinton was an expert on economics. Obama has nothing to show he can handle the ecomony. Speeches won't create jobs or save people's homes. If she becomes 1st Lady, I am sure Barack will make her serve tea just like he said Hillary did when she was First Lady.

Posted by: freedom2008 | February 1, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

How much more hypocritical can you get OBAMA?!? You slander Hillary and claim that you don't know who you are up against because HER HUSBAND backs her up and gives supportive speeches, yet here you are introducing your wife to speak and support you. If that's not hypocrisy, I don't know what is!

Posted by: jlope022 | February 1, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Hillary voted to start the war in Iraq. The end. I dont want that kind of leadership. Especially since she is unable to realize that even with the information available, our national security was never at risk, period. And it should have been obvious considering how the American people had to be convinced that Iraq was a threat.

In my mind, if you voted for this war, or you support that it was started, you are automatically disqualified. That period of time was insanity. We needed a leader to step up and most politicians shrinked from that challenge.

This leaves us with Ron Paul and Barrack Obama. Choose wisely.

Posted by: silus_2000 | February 1, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Barack & Michelle Obama WERE middle-class just 5 years ago. The only reason they are upper class now is because he wrote 2 best-selling books. The Obama's know what it's like to worry about trying to save money for retirement and a college fund for their children. They know what it's like to pay off college loans and try to move out of a condo into a house and still have two nickels left over. The Obama's are just like us. They have been poor and had to struggle. They have had parents who suffered through catastrophic illness and huge medical expenses. Michelle Obama will make a wonderful First Lady. She is articulate and a savvy business woman. She is a mother and supportive wife. America we NEED Barack & Michelle Obama in the White House. We NEED to bring dignity back to the presidency.

Posted by: frillymail1017 | February 1, 2008 2:54 PM | Report abuse

I checked out the link from the message that says, "get a grip" because I was almost influenced just that quickly by what svgjjc had recently posted.

However, after reviewing the information, once again, it is the talk that's not so smooth that seems to mess people up. You should look further into the information you used to support your statement because it turns out to be misleading.

Barack has a large group of individual (smaller) contributors and the report states that the individual contributors are categorized based on their profession/industry.

However, if you want to use your methodology, use the drop down menu and you will find something even more interesting by looking at the industries where the candidates have the most donations.

How do you think things look when you look at; oil/gas, tobacco, casinos and gambling?

Barack is not at the top of these industries in donations by a long shot. Did you just look at the first page and run with the data at first glance to come up with something negative?

Posted by: tbgordonjr | February 1, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Get a grip! Like all the candidates The Obamas' say what they think large blocks of voters want to hear - they just happen to be very good at it. If he wins, Barack goes into office owing more to industry interests than most all of the other candidates except maybe Hillary. Look at the data and ignore the smooth talk:
http://www.opensecrets.org/pres08/select.asp?Ind=H04

Posted by: svgjjc | February 1, 2008 11:36 AM | Report abuse

I watched, and listened, to Michelle Obama on CSPAN giving the Delaware speech. I had an unfamiliar feeling, and then realized she made my heart open. My impression of the Bush administration is of rigid ideologues who begin with the "revealed" truth and then select evidence to support it. There's no heart in that, and if we don't get some heart soon we're going to die of our own poisonous, one sided thinking.

Posted by: dlnsf | February 1, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Hillary will be a great President because she has the experience to solve the difficult problems we face and make a real difference in our lives. Both Obamas make great speeches.. but we have had a leader who gave nothing but slogan's.. remember "Mission Accomplished" We don't need more" media sizzle" we need a tough experienced leader who has a track record of real achievements!
Hillary is the leader with the experience to actually Achieve the changes we need to restore our standing in the world and deal with our failing economy.

Posted by: vg1123 | February 1, 2008 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Michelle Obama would be a classy but down to earth first lady.

But if Hillary wins the democratic nomination, expect to see first lady Cindy McCain continue her cleavage display in the White House. I'd rather see mine at home.

Posted by: LouiseFletcher | February 1, 2008 10:57 AM | Report abuse

what happened to Oprah? I thought she was going to be the next first lady.

Posted by: rmary65 | January 31, 2008 11:59 PM | Report abuse

I saw her today, brought my Hillary supporting friend out to see. The Grand Opera House was packed, about 40 percent non black. The event was well organized and Michelle rocked the house. She was better than he is! Michelle might be the next Hillary.

I did notice an absence of issues and so forth but the energy was palpatable. In person, Mrs. O is very beautiful and stylish and a definite asset to his campaign,

Posted by: debarbie | January 31, 2008 11:45 PM | Report abuse

I saw her today, brought my Hillary supporting friend out to see. The Grand Opera House was packed, about 40 percent non black. The event was well organized and Michelle rocked the house. She was better than he is! Michelle might be the next Hillary.

I did notice an absence of issues and so forth but the energy was palpatable. In person, Mrs. O is very beautiful and stylish and a definite asset to his campaign,

Posted by: debarbie | January 31, 2008 11:45 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if she's still calling Obama her "baby daddy" in public? Bet not.

Posted by: jeannine520 | January 31, 2008 10:02 PM | Report abuse

Michelle Obama was in Connecticut yesterday. Not only will she make a fabulous First Lady she will also boost our standing and respect internationally. And this is something we need to think about - who would best represent us globally. I think Barack Obama is the best choice.

Posted by: milou1 | January 31, 2008 9:53 PM | Report abuse

I have no problem with a woman president at all, but just not Hillary, who is just irritating. Barack is the most eloquent political voice in the last 40 years, and can bring this country together, and he makes me proud to be an American again. Michelle reminds me of a lot of the women I know-- real women, like the previous posters have mentioned. The Obamas have young daughters, and they care about the future for those girls-- they are not just doing this to extend their dynastic last name.

Posted by: elton1111 | January 31, 2008 8:54 PM | Report abuse

I saw Michelle on CSpan giving a speech in New Hampshire. She was phenomenal. A straight-shooter. Can't wait to see her as First Lady!

Posted by: wpost4112 | January 31, 2008 7:39 PM | Report abuse

I went to S.C. last Saturday as a volunteer for the GOTV effort for that state's primary, and I just finished sending off an email to volunteer for next Tuesday's GOTV effort in Delaware. Every state and every delegate is going to count this time 'round, and I sincerely hope that anyone who can lend a few hours of their time and is near a Super Tuesday state, whether large or small, will help out there in the next few days.

"I've never heard so many people during this past election campaign tell us how many things we couldn't do, how many things we couldn't compete with, how many things we couldn't dream about, and how many people we couldn't care for. Unbelievable. If there ever was anything that was part of the American Dream it's 'Yes we can' ... care, believe, dream..."
--Harry Chapin, speaking to his audience during one of his last concerts, at The Bottom Line, NYC, 1981

Posted by: whatmeregister | January 31, 2008 7:30 PM | Report abuse

"Indeed. Michelle is an inspiration to all the REAL feminists."

AMEN!!! :)

Posted by: drama_king | January 31, 2008 7:20 PM | Report abuse

I saw her on C-span in another small setting and thought about her honesty. My Mom heard her in the other room and said, "Is that Obama's wife; she sure doesn't polished." What my Mom meant is that she sounded like a real person compared to HRC.

Posted by: aimiewrites | January 31, 2008 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Indeed. Michelle is an inspiration to all the REAL feminists.

Posted by: quotientintel | January 31, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

I can't wait to see her in the Whitehouse!
She's gonna be fantastic!

Posted by: tjfrmla | January 31, 2008 6:41 PM | Report abuse

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