Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Striding Past the Cynics

Herbert's exactly right about the changed political environment, which is hugely benefiting Obama:

The past week has been a bad one for cynics. For all the criticism of the presidential election process — that it lasts too long, that the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary have too much influence, that the news media’s coverage is too much about the horse race, and so on — for all that, the early stages of this presidential race have been both compelling and heartening.

Voters are excited about this election. They have trudged through snow and frigid air in enormous numbers in Iowa and New Hampshire to see and hear and question the candidates. And most of the candidates are working incredibly hard, fighting their way through exhaustion to attend the next rally or town hall meeting or community breakfast or debate.

What is being fashioned in this process is nothing less than the face of early 21st century America.

January 8, 2008
Op-Ed Columnist

Striding Past the Cynics

Derry, N.H.

Some of the people who showed up early to stand in the long line outside the field house of the Pinkerton Academy would end up waiting more than three hours to see the candidate. Barack Obama was running late, held back by huge and enthusiastic crowds at earlier events. Even people who were not planning to vote for him wanted to see him.

When he finally arrived and took the stage, Mr. Obama told the audience, to boisterous cheers: “There’s something going on out there. Something’s stirring in the wind.”


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