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Was Obama’s community organiser background his secret weapon?

November 5th, 2008


    Did this make the difference in the key states?

One of the interesting conversations I got into at the PB election session last night was on the importance to the election of Obama’s early career as a community organiser – something that many GOP commentators have been quick to deride.

For his instinctive understanding of how to mobilise the weakest and most vulnerable members of society has, surely, played a key part in leading such a successful campaign.

Looking back over the past ten months one of the most impressive Obama moments for me was at the end of a mass rally in Texas when he stood on the podium with early voting request forms in his hand explaining patiently and clearly how to fill in the documents.

You could not imagine Hillary or any other the GOP contenders doing this. As one observer wrote at the time “this was the Presidential candidate turn precinct captain”.

Of course all the campaigns had expertise in this area but those involved on the ground almost certainly did not enjoy the same recognition and backing from the top.

When the final results are analysed I’m sure that the turnout of groups who are usually under-represented in US elections will be seen as a key factor in the Obama victory.

A big thank you to Morus for organising last night’s event, to those at SportTraders who provided an excellent venue and to my son Robert who managed the exceptional spikes in demand on the site so well that we only went down once and that was just for three or four minutes.

And now Glenrothes……!!

Our cartoon, as usual, is by Marf of Londonsketchbook.com.

Mike Smithson






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