Eat The Press



Breaking via MSNBC: Barack Obama has announced that he will be launching a presidential exploratory committee, escewing fancy launching pads like the Sunday talk shows or a Katrina backdrop and taking it straight to YOU — the people — via his website. In keeping with all the other honors YOU have received this year, starting with the Time Person of the Year and continuing on with nods from AdAge, Fox Sports, and Spin, Obama has specifically bypassed the usual messengers and taken his message straight to the heart of it::

Years ago, as a community organizer in Chicago, I learned that meaningful change always begins at the grassroots, and that engaged citizens working together can accomplish extraordinary things.

So even in the midst of the enormous challenges we face today, I have great faith and hope about the future - because I believe in you.

And that's why I wanted to tell you first that I'll be filing papers today to create a presidential exploratory committee.

According to MSNBC, the message went up online shortly after 10 a.m., along with the text of the message sent out in an email sent to supporters.

Pretty savvy move, actually, on Obama's part, with the obvious bounty of media coverage to come (never mind in the lead up), to say nothing of the suddern traffic possibilities on his website (if he slaps Google ads up there quick he can totally rake it in!). That's why it's savvy — Obama knows that he's been the object of scrutiny and fascination, obviously, and this is a great way to sow he's not courting it (even though the citizen journalism touch will provide additional play). Says Obama in his message: "Running for the presidency is a profound decision - a decision no one should make on the basis of media hype or personal ambition alone," which addresses the "rock star" buildup around him and, methinks, takes a wee poke at other competing candidates who shall remain nameless for whom naked ambition for the presidency has become something of a defining characteristic. He also takes more than a poke at Iraq — "a tragic and costly war that should have never been waged" — and that, as a junior Senator who came on in January 2005, he can safely say he did not vote for. All that said, now that he's declared let the knives come out; there's no buildup without backlash, so we'll see what the next few months bring.

Update: Apparently John Edwards pre-empted his New Orleans announcement with a YouTube video, though technically the YouTube announcement was an announcement of the announcement — I kid you not. Here's the quote: "Tomorrow morning, from this place, I will announce that I'm a candidate for the President of the United States," which had been similarly announced prior to the actual announcement. I know. Confusing, isn't it? Perhaps that's why the YouTube announcement-of-announcement slipped under the radar; see more at this detailed post from the Blogger's Blog.

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