Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Obama Asks Iowans To Turn The Page

Illinois Sen. Barack Obama stressed his ability to change politics at campaign rallies today in Oskaloosa and Pella.
Obama repeated a common theme of his campaign. "People want a different kind of politics in this country," said Obama. "They want to turn the page on a politics that has been broken, and they want to write a new chapter in American history."
At both the Oskaloosa and Pella events on this July 4 holiday, this refrain drew some of the loudest cheers and applause from the crowd.
Illinois Sen. Barack Obama speaks to a capacity crowd at Smokey Row cafe in Oskaloosa. He was joined by his daughter, Sasha, and wife, Michelle.
While Obama does not say it outright, he may not only be aiming this call for change toward the politics of President George W. Bush.
In a subtle way, Obama's rhetoric calls to mind the divisive political climate during the presidency of Bush's predecessor, Bill Clinton.
The rally in Oskaloosa began early for a holiday morning, with the crowd filling the seats at Smokey Row cafe well before 9 a.m.
The venue was soon filled to capacity, with a line out on the town square sidewalk.

Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor told Iowa Independent that the cafe comfortably seats 250, and that the standing-room-only crowd was quite larger than that.
Obama's stump speech touched on most of the top issues of the 2008 campaign, discussing the war in Iraq, terrorism, health care and energy policy.
After shaking hands and visiting with attendees of the Oskaloosa rally, Obama and family quickly drove to the neighboring community of Pella for a rally at the home of Dan and Heather Vroom.
Pella is a heavily Republican community, but that didn't seem to stop Obama from attracting a crowd that filled the front yard and spilled out onto the residential street.
Before speaking to the crowd in Pella, a press conference was convened in the backyard of the home where Obama fielded questions from reporters.

Obama was answering questions as his daughters and other children attempted to jump on a trampoline before being ushered back into the house.
Obama hit on the same themes when speaking to the crowd in the front yard, continuing to identify himself as the candidate that can change politics.

He noted his successful fund-raising efforts, and was quick to mention that most of his fund-raising has come from average citizens.
"We got a little bit of attention this last week because we raised a lot of money," he said. "People are still trying to figure out how we did it. We don't take money from federal lobbyists. We don't take money from PACs. The reason is I don't want to be serving the drug companies' agenda or the insurance companies' agenda on a health care bill. I don't want to be serving the oil companies agenda on the energy bill. I want to be serving your agenda. People have responded and 90 percent of the donations we got are for a hundred dollars or less. Because you're ready to take your country back."
Obama was scheduled to continue on the campaign trail in Iowa after leaving Pella. He traveled to Des Moines to attend Independence Day events with his family.
Obama may be feeling quite at home on the campaign trail in Iowa. He misspoke twice during the day's events, saying "Illinois" in place of Iowa when talking about renewable fuels.

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