Sunday, April 13, 2008


Josh Marshall has a clip of Obama being interviewed by Charlie Rose back on Nov. 23, 20041 and he gives a fuller description of what he was trying to get at in his Pennsylvania remarks:

CHARLIE ROSE: But they seem too, you know, there`s a book about what`s wrong with Kansas, as you know.
BARACK OBAMA: Right, and my mother is from Kansas, so, yes.
CHARLIE ROSE: And basically, the book argues that people in hardship cases, people who have not gotten the best end of the American dream, are voting on faith issues and morality issues rather than on economic interests.
CHARLIE ROSE: Which suggests that that has somehow become a touch stone in a way that there`s...
BARACK OBAMA: Well, I`ll tell you an example. There`s a town that I spoke about in my speech, actually, in Illinois. And it`s I think representative of many towns in the Midwest. Galesburg, Illinois. They`ve got 36,000 people. They`ve lost 4,000 jobs in the last two years; 20 percent of their employment base collapses, because companies move out to Mexico.
So you sit down and you talk to union workers, 50, 55-year-old guys, who -- the best that`s being offered to them is retraining to be nurses assistants. Right, these guys with beards and tough guys who are used to handling heavy machinery.
They`re not optimistic about the prospects for them to be able to attain the kinds of economic security that they had under the old system. So they`ve got insecurity in their economic life. They don`t know where their health care is coming from. They don`t know what`s happening with their pension.
What they do know is that they can go out with their friends and hunt and feel a sense of camaraderie. And there`s a connection between hunting and them going out with their father to hunt, just as there is a connection maybe for their wives to going to church and going with their grandmother to church.
And if we don`t have plausible answers on the economic front, and we appear to be condescending towards those traditions that are giving their lives some stability, then they`re going to opt for at least that party that seems to be speaking to the things that are giving -- that still provide them something solid to stand on.
CHARLIE ROSE: And some sense that they`re not being looked down on.
CHARLIE ROSE: Somebody who does not think that they are contemptuous of them and their lifestyle and their beliefs.
BARACK OBAMA: Absolutely.
1The Charlie Rose Show
November 23, 2004 Tuesday
Interview with Barack Obama
BYLINE: Charlie Rose
GUESTS: Barack Obama

LENGTH: 9028 words

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