Saturday, February 9, 2008

Obama Sweeps Three Primaries, Gives Magnificent Speech at Jefferson-Jackson Dinner

Barack Obama may be the best orator of our age - I certainly can't think of anyone better, or even close. His speech tonight at the Jefferson-Jackson Democratic dinner in Virginia was a pleasure to behold and hear on television. The best part was Obama's confrontation of the charge that he's an idealist, with pie-in-the-sky hopes. His answers swept through the best of American history - freeing the slaves, giving women the right to vote, beating fascism in World War II, sacrificing lives for civil rights in the 1960s - and was another masterpiece of inspiration. It's hard to imagine anyone with any sensitivity not being moved.

Hillary Clinton gave an excellent speech, too, making it more clear than she usually does how her election as President would be revolutionary, too, by putting a woman in the White House. This is something she'll need to do more of, if she stands any chance of getting the nomination.

Clinton's speech was, indeed, less political than Obama's - but political is just what Obama needs to do now. He has to convince as many Democrats as possible that he can beat the 19th-century Republicans who are running for the highest office.

Obama certainly won by overwhelming margins tonight in Louisiana, Nebraska, and Washington State (and, just for good measure, in the Virgin Islands, too). The delegate count is still close, and there are some crucially important primaries ahead, but Obama is gaining an edge.

Meanwhile, Huckabee beat McCain in Kansas, is leading handily in Louisiana, and is even a little ahead in Washington State at this moment. The Republican contest may be not be as settled as was thought just a few days ago, and this is good news, too.







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