Notable Quotables Election Special: Barack Obama’s Media Groupies
As longtime NewsBusters readers are painfully aware, the supposedly objective news media have showered Barack Obama with fawning press coverage throughout his campaign for the White House. (That, plus a $600 million war chest, will apparently get you pretty far in politics.) The Media Research Center has assembled a special Campaign 2008 edition of our bi-weekly Notable Quotables, chock full of journalists’ most adoring pro-Obama quotes. The full collection can be found here, but here are a few of the choicer quotes and along with a memorable video:
Love at First Sight
“I think the real breakout tonight is [Illinois Senate candidate Barack] Obama. I mean, Teresa [Heinz-Kerry] is a fascinating story, but Obama is a rock star!” — NBC’s Andrea Mitchell during MSNBC’s live coverage of the Democratic convention, July 27, 2004.
“I have to tell ya — a little chill in my, in my legs now. That is an amazing moment in history right there. It is really an amazing moment. A keynoter like I’ve never heard....I’ve just seen the first black President there!” — MSNBC’s Chris Matthews following Obama’s speech before the Democratic convention, July 27, 2004.
Run, Barack, Run!
“Obama’s personal appeal is made manifest when he steps down from the podium and is swarmed by well-wishers of all ages and hues....Obama seemed the political equivalent of a rainbow — a sudden preternatural event inspiring awe and ecstasy....He transcends the racial divide so effortlessly that it seems reasonable to expect that he can bridge all the other divisions — and answer all the impossible questions — plaguing American public life.” — Time’s Joe Klein, October 23, 2006 cover story, “Why Barack Obama Could Be the Next President.”
“Many people, afterwards [after Obama’s 2004 convention speech], they weren’t sure how to pronounce your name but they were moved by you. People were crying. You tapped into something. You touched people....If your party says to you, ‘We need you,’ and, and there’s already a drumbeat out there, will you respond?” — Co-host Meredith Vieira to Obama on NBC’s Today, October 19, 2006.
Is He “The One?”
“You can see it in the crowds. The thrill, the hope. How they surge toward him. You’re looking at an American political phenomenon....He inspires the party faithful and many others, like no one else on the scene today....And the question you can sense on everyone’s mind, as they listen so intently to him, is he the one? Is Barack Obama the man, the black man, who could lead the Democrats back to the White House and maybe even unite the country?...Everywhere he goes, people want him to run for President, especially in Iowa, cradle of presidential contenders. Around here, they’re even naming babies after him.” — ABC Nightline co-anchor Terry Moran, Nov. 6, 2006.
Mesmerized by “Stoic Eloquence”
“They come in droves, by the tens of thousands at times, to hear Barack Obama speak....With soaring rhetoric, Obama is moving his audiences not just politically, but emotionally. Even some political commentators who’ve seen it all can’t help but gush....The stoic eloquence channels John F. Kennedy.” — CBS’s Tracy Smith on the The Early Show, February 14.
“It’s almost hard to remain objective because it’s infectious, the energy, I think. It sort of goes against your core to say that as a reporter, but the crowds have gotten so much bigger, his energy has gotten stronger. He feeds off that.” — NBC reporter Lee Cowan in an MSNBC.com video about the Obama campaign posted January 7.
The Ultimate Obama Fan
“He’s come from a white family and a black family, and he’s married to a black woman, and they’re cool people. They are really cool. They are Jack and Jackie Kennedy when you see them together. They are cool. And they’re great-looking, and they’re cool and they’re young.” — MSNBC’s Chris Matthews talking about the Obamas on NBC’s Tonight Show, January 16.
Co-anchor Chris Matthews: “I have to tell you, you know, it’s part of reporting this case, this election, the feeling most people get when they hear Barack Obama’s speech. My — I felt this thrill going up my leg. I mean, I don’t have that too often.”
Co-anchor Keith Olbermann: “Steady.”
Matthews: “No, seriously. It’s a dramatic event. He speaks about America in a way that has nothing to do with politics. It has to do with the feeling we have about our country. And that is an objective assessment.” — Exchange during MSNBC’s coverage of the Virginia, Maryland and Washington D.C. primaries, February 12.