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Who exactly finds “bitter” offensive?

April 14, 2008

So there has been much talk of Obama’s bitter comment this weekend. People are up in arms about how Obama is an elitist and condescending. Obama has responded with a robo-call and the blogosphere and morning shows were abuzz with discussions about his gaffe. All of that said, I agree with his sentiment and agree with the punditry that it was really poorly worded. When people face hard times and feel frustrated they turn to the constants in their lives. For some that’s religion, for some that’s a family tradition of hunting. Then they might be more inclined to vote in part on those issues. I don’t think Obama was saying people hunt and are religious BECAUSE of job loss, perceived corruption and all sorts of other issues; rather, I think he was saying these things change people’s priorities. Either way, here’s my thought.

Hillary and McCain are saying that clearly Obama is out of touch with the American people. My question is (especially since the focus of the debate is on the first part where he called people bitter), is it possible that people don’t see this as some terrible insult? Perhaps not recognizing that people are bitter is really the more out of touch position. It seems to me that the outrage in and offense taken has come from the elite, NOT the people who matter (voters). Fox–obviously sympathetic to Obama–post two interviews of people who admit they are bitter. Ben Smith also points out that people have already formed http://www.bittervoters.org who support Obama, and Senator Casey is vouching for him.

Sure, some people might be offended, but in 24/7 campaign it’s hard for someone to go a day without offending someone. Here are the question that I think we’ll see answered shortly.

  • Will the voters of PA and beyond (and superdelegates) think this was true, poor word choice, or revealing of some deep hidden loathing of small town America?
  • Will attempt to shift the focus from the bitter part to the guns and religion part of his statement be successful and carry the story into the next week?
  • Will the 109-million-dollar woman who has lived in the public eye and away from the concerns of everyday Americans calling the candidate who was raised by a single mom and grandparents and just payed off his student loans an elitist backfire and draw attention to her own circumstances?
  • Will Hillary be as convincing a hunter as this man when challenged by Obama and the press on her 2nd amendment credentials?
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2 Comments leave one →
  1. April 14, 2008 12:21 am

    I dont think anything that comes out about Hillary anymore matters, even when she lies. ABout Obama it is different, because so many of this perfect image of him. I think this recent comment is very damaging.

  2. April 14, 2008 8:51 am

    This is going to be damaging in that the GOP was able to make Gore and Kerry seem elitist (while Bush was not, go figure).

    The GOP is brilliant at cutting to the emotional connection in voters. In understanding that people mostly don’t vote issues, but vote on passion. (See the “Political Brain” a book out last year).

    Bottom line is that anything that puts Obama in an “liberal elite” box is damaging with swing voters.

    For primary voters not so much a big deal (they are the believers).

    For the general election it will be huge.

    Heck there is already a SNOB photo / artwork flying around the internet.

    Regards,

    Shaun Dakin
    CEO and Founder
    StopPoliticalCalls.org

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