Election 2008

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Obama Speaks Firmly to Curb Waning Political Momentum

April 30, 2008 04:45 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
Barack Obama offers direct tone and breaks from his controversial former pastor ahead of next week's potentially decisive primaries.

30-Second Summary

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After several weeks of attacks and campaign missteps, the Democratic frontrunner has sought to distance himself from controversy with a sharper, more direct tone in anticipation of Tuesday’s primaries in North Carolina and Indiana.

The two contests represent the two largest states remaining in the Democratic Party’s prolonged primary season. With Hillary Clinton closing the gaps in polls in both states, Obama’s chances of securing the nomination have been reduced. Obama currently leads Clinton in pledged delegates and in the popular vote, but Clinton edged closer with a nine-point victory in Pennsylvania last week.

Obama's most notable effort came with a final split from his former pastor Jeremiah Wright on Tuesday. At a press conference in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Obama denounced Wright’s recent comments, given during the course of three events over the weekend, as “divisive and destructive.” Obama said, “I find these comments appalling. It contradicts everything that I’m about and who I am.”

Offering his strongest words yet, Obama sought to stop the flow of criticism from Hillary Clinton, the Republican party and media critics, and also relieve the doubts of Democratic voters in North Carolina and Indiana, where polls show him having lost ground over the last week.

Obama also announced that he would appear on the Sunday news program Meet the Press for the entire program. The Senator’s appearance will come one week after he ended a lengthy boycott of Fox News by appearing in an interview with Chris Wallace.

Headline Links: Change of tone for Obama

Background: Obama’s slowing momentum

Reactions: Black leaders criticize Wright

Opinion & Analysis: Deval Patrick similarities, and curious political strategy

Key Players: Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama

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