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By Text, E-Mail and Blog, Obama Thanks Clinton

By Garance Franke-Ruta
Using the sophisticated alert system it's honed through 22 debates and 54 election contests, Barack Obama's campaign sent supporters a text message this afternoon at 2:08 p.m. directing them to his campaign website. There, supporters found a special page asking them to send e-mails to former rival Hillary Clinton to thank her for her endorsement and her contributions to the just concluded Democratic primary race.

"Sen. Clinton just announced her support for Barack," the SMS message read. "Our party & our country are stronger because of the work she has done. http://my.barackobama.com/thanks."

At the page, readers were instructed to fill in their contact information, turning Clinton's withdrawal into yet another opportunity for multi-functional online Obama organizing, e-mail list-building and fundraising effort planning. (Obama supporters at rallies are routinely asked to hold up their cellphones and text his campaign, and a central next step in the process is getting e-mail addresses to go with those phone numbers.)

"Senator Clinton made history over the past 16 months -- not just because she has broken barriers, but because she has inspired millions of Americans with her strength, her courage, and her commitment to causes like universal health care that make a difference in the lives of hardworking Americans," read the page, which also included a video of Obama praising Clinton during his St. Paul, Minnesota, speech last Tuesday. "Take a minute to thank her for her hard work and for supporting this campaign."

Obama's campaign also sent out an e-mail fundraising solicitation keyed to Clinton's speech, announcing a goal of getting 20,000 new donors and promising to match those new donors with existing -- and presumably small-dollar -- donors who would donate in sync with them to "double your impact." And for those who missed the e-mail, it was reprinted on the Obama headquarters blog.

The Clinton campaign, for its part, sent out the text of its speech with a solicitation for funds for its own campaign, which, though now formally suspended, is still debt-ridden.

By Web Politics Editor  |  June 7, 2008; 4:52 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama  
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