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August 23, 2008

Wikipedia: Barack Obama presidential campaign, 2008

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Obama for America
Campaign U.S. presidential election, 2008
Candidate Barack Obama
U.S. Senator 2005–present
Affiliation Democratic Party
Status Announced February 10, 2007
Presumptive nominee June 3, 2008
Headquarters Chicago, Illinois
Key people David Plouffe (Manager)
Penny Pritzker (Finance)
David Axelrod (Media)
Robert Gibbs (Communications)
Receipts US$339.2M (2008-06-30)[2]
Slogan Yes We Can
Change We Can Believe In
Barack Obama
v  d  e
Early life and career · (Memoir)
Illinois Senate career
U.S. Senate career
Presidential primaries · Obama–Biden 2008
Cultural and political image
Family · Political positions

Barack Obama, the junior United States Senator from Illinois, announced his candidacy for the presidency of the United States in Springfield, Illinois, on February 10, 2007.[1] On June 3, 2008, he secured enough delegates to become the presumptive nominee of the Democratic Party for the 2008 presidential election. He will be the first African-American in history to run on a major party ticket.[2] Shortly after midnight on August 23, 2008, Barack Obama’s official campaign website confirmed earlier reports that Senator Joseph Biden of Delaware would be the Vice Presidential nominee.[3]



End of the primaries

Further information: Barack Obama presidential primary campaign, 2008
Presumptive nomineeBarack ObamaIllinois Presumptive nomineeBarack ObamaIllinois
Presumptive nominee
Barack Obama
VP designate
Joseph Biden, Jr.

On June 3, 2008, after the Montana and South Dakota primaries, Barack Obama secured enough delegates to clinch the nomination of the Democratic party for President of the United States.[2] His opponent, Republican John McCain, passed the delegate threshold to become the presumptive nominee of his party on March 4.[4] On June 7, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Obama’s remaining opponent in the quest for the Democratic nomination, conceded defeat at a rally in Washington, D.C. and urged her supporters to back Obama.[5] After a June 26 dinner at which Obama encouraged his fundraisers to donate to Clinton’s debt-addled campaign,[6] Obama and Clinton ran their first post-primary event together in Unity, New Hampshire on June 27.[7] Over the first two weeks of July, the campaign ran a heavier schedule of fundraising events, drawing from former donors to Clinton’s campaign.[8]

Middle Eastern and European tour

In July 2008 Obama traveled to Kuwait, Afghanistan,[9] Iraq,[10] Jordan,[11] the West Bank,[12] Israel, Germany, France, and Great Britain. During the course of this trip he met with assorted international leaders, including President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan,[13] Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki of Iraq, King Abdullah II of Jordan, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Prime Minister of Israel Ehud Olmert, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, President Nicolas Sarkozy of France,[14] and Prime Minister Gordon Brown of the United Kingdom, as well as former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Conservative opposition leader David Cameron.[15]

Vice Presidential Selection

Wikinews has related news:
Barack Obama chooses Senator Joe Biden as his Vice Presidential running mate for 2008
Main articles: Democratic Party (United States) vice presidential candidates, 2008 and Joe Biden presidential campaign, 2008#Obama–Biden campaign 2008

Barack Obama’s running mate for the presidency has been a subject of speculation since the end of the primaries. As of August 2008, some of the most popular choices for VP include, but are not limited to, New York Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, Delaware Senator Joe Biden, Indiana Senator Evan Bayh, Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius, Colin Powell, New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, and retired General Wesley Clark.

On Thursday, August 21, 2008, Obama announced that he had made a selection for the VP spot, but would not reveal until Saturday, August 23 who it was. [16] Obama’s campaign encouraged supporters to sign up for a text messaging system that will alert them the moment he announced his choice.

On Friday, August 22, KMBC News of Kansas City spotted bumper stickers of an Obama/Bayh ’08 ticket that were being printed in Lenexa, Kansas. Three sources close to a local printing plant reported that such material was being produced.[17] However, NBC News later quoted sources stating that Bayh had been informed by Obama’s campaign that he was not the pick.[18] According to an Associated Press report that same evening, Joe Biden was selected as Obama’s candidate.[19] The Associated Press report was confirmed several hours later, on August 23, on Barack Obama’s official campaign website.[3]

Opinion polling

Further information: Nationwide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008 and Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008
Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008.       10% Obama lead      4%–10% Obama lead      1%–4% Obama lead      Tie      1%–4% McCain lead      4%–10% McCain lead       10% McCain lead

Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008.[20]       10% Obama lead      4%–10% Obama lead      1%–4% Obama lead      Tie      1%–4% McCain lead      4%–10% McCain lead       10% McCain lead

A RealClearPolitics average of six national polls taken between June 19 and July 5 showed a 6-point Obama lead.[21] According to the Gallup Organization, Obama held a nine percent lead over McCain in interviews conducted from July 24–26, during Obama’s foreign trip.[22] But, as of August 2, Gallup polling showed a tie between the two candidates. Gallup has shown an average Obama lead of 3 points over all polls conducted since early June.[23]

Charts of polling data in battleground states

Updated August 20, 2008



In Florida, from February to mid-May 2008, McCain held a steady lead in the polls. From mid-May to mid-June, the candidates were virtually tied. Polling conducted since mid-June shows McCain in the lead in most polls, and Obama ahead in some polls. The number of undecided voters has generally been decreasing from an average of about 15% down to an average of about 5% to 10% in recent polling.[24]



In Pennsylvania, from February 2008 until mid-April 2008, the candidates moved back and forth between leading and lagging in the polls. Since mid-April, polls show Obama with a lead averaging about 7% to 8%. The number of undecided voters has generally been decreasing from an average of about 15% down to an average of about 10% in recent polling.[25]



In Ohio, from February 2008 until mid-April 2008, McCain’s held a slight 2% to 3% lead in the polls. From mid-April to mid-July, Obama held a 3% to 4% lead in the polls. Recent polls show McCain pulling ahead of Obama. The number of undecided voters has generally been decreasing from an average of about 15% down to an average of about 10% in recent polling.[26]



In Michigan, from February 2008 to mid-May, Obama and McCain were very close in the polls. From mid-May to early July, Obama was ahead by as much as 10%, but Obama’s lead has recently decreased to about 3% to 4%. The number of undecided voters has generally been decreasing from an average of about 15% down to an average of about 10% in recent polling.[27]



In Virginia, from February 2008 until mid-May 2008, McCain held a lead in the polls averaging about 6%. From mid-May to present, Obama and McCain are basically tied. During this period, undecided voters made up an average of about 5% to 11% of the total.[28]



In Indiana, from February 2008 until early May 2008, McCain’s 9% lead in the polls was reduced to a tie. The candidates were tied in polls conducted in late June. A recent poll shows McCain with a 6% lead over Obama. During this period, undecided voters made up an average of about 7% to 11% of the total.[29]



In Missouri, from February 2008 to present, McCain had steadily led in the polls. His lead was the greatest in March. The polls closed to within a few percentage points from mid-May to early July, and McCain is beginning to pull away again in recent polling, currently showing an average lead of about 5% to 10%. The number of undecided voters has generally been decreasing from an average of over 10% down to an average of about 7% to 8% in recent polling.[30]

Political positions

Main article: Political positions of Barack Obama

Obama has taken positions on many national, political, economic and social issues, either through public comments or his senatorial voting record. Since announcing his presidential campaign in February 2007, Obama has emphasized withdrawing American troops from Iraq, increasing energy independence (that includes New Energy For America plan [31]), decreasing the influence of lobbyists, and promoting universal health care as top national priorities.


See also: Fundraising for the 2008 United States presidential election

According to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission, by the end of the first quarter of 2008, the campaign had raised more money ($133,549,000)[32] than it had raised in all of 2007 ($103,802,537). The campaign raised only $21.9 million in May, making it one of their weaker months for fundraising, but went on to raise $52 million in June, after Obama had secured the nomination.[33]

On June 19, Obama became the first major-party presidential candidate to turn down public financing since the system was created after the Watergate scandal.[34][35] Obama was expected to raise $265 million between the time of the announcement and election day.[36] By rejecting the funds in favor of private donations, the campaign set itself in a position to outspend John McCain prior to the election. Had he signed on to the plan, he would only have been able to spend $84.1 million over the period between the party convention in August and the general election in November.[37]

Obama explained his decision to opt out of the public financing system, saying, “public financing of presidential elections as it exists today is broken, and we face opponents who’ve become masters at gaming this broken system.” [35] Critics of the decision claimed that the decision contradicted earlier statements that he would attempt to reach agreement with McCain to obtain public financing,[38][36] and asserted that Obama’s campaign was receiving as much support from unregulated 527 groups as McCain’s.[39]

Media campaign

Television advertisements

Soon after becoming the presumptive nominee, Obama began a biographical commercial campaign emphasizing his patriotism.[40] The advertisements ran in 18 states, including traditionally Republican Alaska and North Carolina.[41] Between June 6 and July 26, Obama’s campaign spent $27 million on advertisements, against a combined McCain and Republican National Committee total of $24.6 million.[42]

Campaign song

Joss Stone has been asked personally by Barack Obama in August to write and record his presidential campaign song, reportedly due to the fact that she appeals across racial boundaries.[43]


Obama's certificate of live birth

Obama’s certificate of live birth

On June 12, 2008, Obama launched a website to counter what he described as smears by his opponents.[44] The site,, provides responses to criticisms of the candidate, identifying some sources as right-wing talk radio and bloggers.[45] To counter rumors about the candidate’s birth, including rumors that he was not a natural born citizen, the campaign posted an image of his birth certificate.[46]

Joint appearances and debates

Main articles: Civil Forum on The Presidency and Obama–McCain debates

On June 4, McCain proposed a series of ten joint town hall meetings with him, at which the two could engage each other, beginning the next week.[47] Obama first agreed in principle to the notion,[48] but later rejected McCain’s proposal, offering instead one town-hall event on the Independence Day holiday and four traditional debate-style joint appearances.[49] As of June 2008 the candidates had not reached agreement on debate format.[50]

In August, Obama and McCain agreed to back-to-back interviews by pastor Rick Warren at Saddleback Church.

Presidential debates

There are three presidential debates scheduled between Obama and McCain. No third party candidates or Independent candidates have been offered an invitation to debate in any of the debates[51] as Obama and McCain are the only candidates on the ballot in all 50 States and the District of Columbia[ citation needed ]. The Commission on Presidential Debates has proposed that two of three 90 minute debates be held in an informal, seated, talk show format, while the third would be in a town hall format that allowed both candidates to walk around.[52]

  • First presidential debate: Friday, September 26, University of Mississippi, Oxford, Mississippi
  • Second presidential debate: Tuesday, October 7, Belmont University, Nashville, Tennessee
  • Third presidential debate: Wednesday, October 15, Hofstra University, Hempstead, New York

Vice Presidential debate

There is one vice presidential debate scheduled between Senator Joseph Biden and the yet to be named Republican Vice Presidential nominee. As with the presidential debates, no third party or independent candidates have been offered an invitation.

  • Vice presidential debate: Thursday, October 2, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri

See also

  • Obama Republican
  • List of Barack Obama presidential campaign endorsements, 2008


  1. ^ “Obama Launches Presidential Bid”, BBC News, 2007-02-10. Retrieved on 2008-01-14. Video at Brightcove.TV.
  2. ^ a b Jeff Zeleny, “Obama Clinches Nomination; First Black Candidate to Lead a Major Party Ticket,” The New York Times, 2008-06-04. Retrieved 2008-07-05.
  3. ^ a b “Joe Biden!”. Retrieved on 2008-08-28. “”Breaking news: the text message is out and it’s official… Barack Obama has selected Joe Biden to be his running mate!””
  4. ^ “McCain wins GOP nomination; Huckabee bows out,” CNN News, 2008-03-05. Retrieved 2008-07-07; Simon Rushton, “McCain clinches Republican prize”, CNN News, 2008-03-04. Retrieved 2008-07-07.
  5. ^ Sasha Issenberg, “Clinton ends her bid, hails Obama,” The Boston Globe, 2008-06-08. Retrieved 2008-07-05. See also: Adam Nagourney and Jeff Zeleny, “Clinton Ready to End Bid and Endorse Obama,” The New York Times, 2008-06-05. Retrieved 2008-07-07.
  6. ^ Jeff Zeleny, “Obama Gives $2,300 for Clinton Debt,” The New York Times, 2008-06-27. Retrieved 2008-07-07.
  7. ^ “Clinton and Obama rally together,” BBC News, 2008-06-27. Retrieved 2008-07-07; Mark Leibovich and Jeff Zeleny, “Obama and Clinton Hold First Post-Primary Event,” The New York Times, 2008-06-28. Retrieved 2008-07-07.
  8. ^ Michael Luo and Christopher Drew, “Obama Picks Up Fund-Raising Pace,” The New York Times, 2008-07-03. Retrieved 2008-07-06. See also: “Obama, Clinton to hold joint fundraisers in NY,” Associated Press, 2008-07-05. Retrieved 2008-07-07; Jonathan Weisman, “Obama and Clinton, Together Again,” Washington Post, 2008-07-05. Retrieved 2008-07-07.
  9. ^ Carlotta Gall and Jeff Zeleny, “Obama Opens a Foreign Tour in Afghanistan,” The New York Times, 2008-07-20.
  10. ^ Liz Sly, “Obama arrives in Baghdad,” Chicago Tribune, 2008-07-21. Retrieved 2008-07-31.
  11. ^ Mike Dorning, “Obama sizes up Mideast stage,” Chicago Tribune, 2008-07-22. Retrieved 2008-07-31.
  12. ^ Mike Dorning, “‘Friend of Israel’ also woos Palestinians,” Chicago Tribune, 2008-07-24. Retrieved 2008-07-31.
  13. ^ Kim Barker, “Obama, Karzai keep talk ‘positive’,” Chicago Tribune, 2008-07-21. Retrieved 2008-07-31.
  14. ^ Jeff Zeleny and Steven Erlanger, “3 Hours in Paris, and Smiles All Around,” The New York Times, 2008-07-26. Retrieved 2008-07-31; Elana Schor, “Obama arrives in Paris to meet Sarkozy,” The Guardian, 2008-07-25. Retrieved 2008-07-31.
  15. ^ Peter Walker, “Obama hails US-UK ties after talks with Brown at Downing Street,” The Guardian, 2008-07-26. Retrieved 2008-07-31.
  16. ^ Alexander Mooney, “[1]”, CNN, 2008-08-21. Retrieved 2008-08-21.
  17. ^ “Bumper Sticker Could Indicate Bayh Is Obama’s Veep”, KMBC News (2008-08-22). 
  18. ^ “Bayh, Kaine out of Obama’s veep race”, MSNBC (2008-08-22). 
  19. ^ Lis Sidoti and Nedra Pickler (2008-08-22). “Obama picks Biden for veep”, 
  20. ^ States are colored according to the average from at least the last three poll results from Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008. Washington, D.C. is presumed heavy Democrat. If there have been more than 3 polls taken within a month of the latest poll, then these are averaged.
  21. ^ General Election: McCain vs. Obama, RealClearPolitics. Retrieved 2008-07-06.
  22. ^ Frank Newport, “Gallup Daily: Obama 49%, McCain 40%,” Gallup Organization, 2007-07-27. Retrieved 2008-08-02.
  23. ^ Jeff Jones, “Gallup Daily: McCain, Obama Remain Tied,” Gallup Organization, 2008-08-02. Retrieved 2008-08-02.
  24. ^ Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008#Florida
  25. ^ Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008#Pennsylvania
  26. ^ Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008#Ohio
  27. ^ Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008#Michigan
  28. ^ Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008#Virginia
  29. ^ Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008#Indiana
  30. ^ Statewide opinion polling for the United States presidential election, 2008#Missouri
  31. ^
  32. ^ Obama for America: Report of Receipts and Disbursements, Federal Election Commission. Retrieved 2008-04-03.
  33. ^ Jeff Zeleny, “Obama Raises $52 Million in June,” The New York Times, 2008-07-17. Retrieved 2008-07-17.
  34. ^ Jonathan D. Salant, “Obama Won’t Accept Public Money in Election Campaign,” Bloomberg, 2008-06-19. Retrieved 2008-06-19.
  35. ^ a b Shailagh Murray and Perry Bacon Jr., “Obama to Reject Public Funds for Election,” Washington Post, 2008-06-20. Retrieved 2008-06-19
  36. ^ a b Ewen MacAskill, “US elections: Obama faces backlash for refusing public campaign funding,” The Guardian, 2008-06-20. Retrieved 2008-06-21.
  37. ^ Emily Cadei, “Q & A: Obama’s public funding opt-out,” USA Today, 2008-06-20. Retrieved 2008-06-21.
  38. ^ Kenneth P. Vogel, “Obama move irks reform allies,” The Politico, 2008-06-19. Retrieved 2008-06-21; Liz Sidoti, “With money, Obama to try to widen the battleground,” Associated Press, 2008-06-20. Retrieved 2008-06-21. See also: Alan Silverleib, “Analysis: Rejecting public funding won’t hurt Obama,” CNN News, 2008-06-20. Retrieved 2008-07-07.
  39. ^ John Dickerson, “The Flip-Flop Brothers,” Slate, 2008-06-20. Retrieved 2008-06-21.
  40. ^ John McCormick, “Obama in red, white and blue,” Chicago Tribune, 2008-06-30. Retrieved 2008-07-06.
  41. ^ John Harwood, “Aims of Democrats Reach Beyond the Oval Office,” The New York Times, 2008-07-07. Retrieved 2008-07-07; Jonathan Martin and Ben Smith, “Obama’s apple pie campaign,” The Politico, 2008-07-07. Retrieved 2008-07-07; Andy Sullivan and Paul Thomasch, “TV ad spending to set record in presidential race,” Reuters, 2008-07-02. Retrieved 2008-07-07. See also: Jim Rutenberg and Christopher Drew, “National Push by Obama on Ads and Turnout,” The New York Times, 2008-06-22. Retrieved 2008-07-07.
  42. ^ Jim Rutenburg, “Taking to the Airwaves,” The New York Times, 2008-07-29. Retrieved 2008-07-30. See also: “General Election Campaign TV Advertising Spending Exceeds $50 Million in First Two Months of Campaign,” University of Wisconsin Advertising Project, 2008-07-30. Retrieved 2008-07-30.
  43. ^ “Joss Stone to record Barack Obama campaign song”. Retrieved on 2008-08-12.
  44. ^ “Obama launches online campaign against ‘smears’,” Agence France-Presse, 2008-06-12. Retrieved 2008-06-21.
  45. ^ Karen Tumulty, “Will Obama’s Anti-Rumor Plan Work?,” Time, 2008-06-12. Retrieved 2008-06-20.
  46. ^ The truth about Barack’s birth certificate, Obama for America. Retrieved 2008-06-14.
  47. ^ Jennifer Parker, “Political Radar: The Debate Over the Debates,” ABC News, 2008-06-04. Retrieved 2008-06-06; “Obama says he’s humbled by victory, confident of party unity”, CNN News, 2008-06-04. Retrieved 2008-07-07.
  48. ^ Tahman Bradley, “Obama Open to McCain Town Hall,” ABC News, 2008-06-04. Retrieved 2008-06-06.
  49. ^ Nedra Pickler, “McCain, Obama fail to agree on town halls,” Associated Press, 2006-06-13. Retrieved 2008-06-13.
  50. ^ “McCain & Obama Invited to Town Halls at Reagan and Johnson Libraries,” ABC News, 2008-06-12. Retrieved 2008-06-19; “Debate over the Debates; McCain, Obama Clash over Joint Town Halls,” FOX News, 2008-06-13. Retrieved 2008-06-16.
  51. ^ Commission on Presidential Debates Announces Sites, Dates, Formats and Candidate Selection Criteria for 2008 General Election, Commission on Presidential Debates, 2007-11-19. Retrieved 2008-07-06.
  52. ^ “Gun Ruling Reverberates,” The Hartford Courant, 2008-06-27. Retrieved 2008-07-06.

External links

  • Barack Obama presidential campaign, 2008 at the Open Directory Project
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