Friday, 27 June 2008

Barack Puts HIS Money Where His Mouth Is

And by the way...

Apparently at that joint meeting, Barack went one step beyond his earlier calls for his donors to help Hillary with her debt - he and Michelle wrote a personal check for the maximum amount to help Hillary pay her vendors. His National Finance Chair Penny Prizker did the same.

Hillary has stated that she is not looking for help to repay the $11 Million or so that she loaned herself, but she is looking for help with paying off the money she owes to her vendors. A lot of these vendors are small businesses - events companies, catering firms, landlords renting office space - who can be hard hit if a major client is unable to pay. So it is right that these debts be paid off and a nice gesture that Obama is willing to help with this personally.

Obama and Clinton Meet With Clinton's Fundraisers

Last night Senators Clinton and Obama met together with a group of Hillary's top fundraisers. Both addressed the group and talked about the historica nature of the race so far, and the importance of winning in November.

Senator Clinton said:

“This was a hard-fought campaign,” she continued. “That’s what made it so exciting and intense and why people’s passions ran so high on both sides. I know my supporters have extremely strong feelings, and I know Barack’s do as well. But we are a family, and we have an opportunity now to really demonstrate clearly we do know what’s at stake, and we will do whatever it takes to win back this White House.”

Senator Obama said:

"Between my grandmother’s generation and my young daughter, there’s a testimony to the challenges that are hard won and hard fought. To the point that my 9-year-old takes for granted that of course we can have a woman president. Of course we can have an African-American president. But that doesn’t come just by the passage of time. It comes because people are consistently working and fighting."

“I recognize that this room shared the same passion that a roomful of my supporters would show. I do not expect that passion to be transferred. Sen. Cinton is unique, and your relationships with her are unique.” But he added, “Sen. Clinton and I at our core agree deeply that this country needs to change.”

I say:

It's impressive that Senator Clinton is able to put aside what must be a crushing personal disappointment in order to put her heart and soul into electing the candidate who defeated her, but shares her policy vision. I hope that I could be that gracious and constructive mere weeks after losing my life's ambition.

It goes to show that Senator Clinton, like me, like Obama, like you (I hope) is prepared to pay any price, bear any burden to put this country back on the right track.

Welcome Diana

Dear Regular Blog Readers and New Friends,

I just wanted to send a warm welcome to my good friend and outstanding Obama supporter Diana Shaw Clark, who has just started as an additional contributor to this blog.

Diana has been a whole-hearted advocate for Senator Obama since (it seems like) the dawn of time! Well, since early 2007 anyway. She is a successful fundraiser, activist, writer, lifter of spirits, and true believer in change.

From now on you may see posts from either of us on the blog - I (Karin) will be listed as Obama London and Diana as Dsclark. Both of us, however will be speaking with one voice on the single biggest issue of our day - the need to elect Barack Obama President in November.

My thanks to Diana, and thanks to all of you for reading and for caring.

Best wishes,


Compare and Contrast

Today, as the official Party Unity movement gets underway in, well, Unity, New Hampshire, it's worth thinking about those issues and values that bind us as Democrats. Regardless the dynamics that had kept us at odds,  the auspicious fact is: most Hillary Clinton supporters share the goals expressed by Barack Obama's Economic Policy Director Jason Furman in today's Financial Times. Furman told the paper that 
Among Mr Obama’s priorities would be restoring public investment levels in basic scientific research, middle class education and creating a system of universal health insurance. He would also push fiscal redistribution by eliminating most of Mr Bush’s tax cuts for those on more than $250,000 a year while pushing through a $1,000 tax cut for middle class households. In addition, the wealthy would be subject to Social Security taxes on earnings above $250,000.Mr Furman also drew a contrast with Mr McCain’s tax plans, which include a sharp reduction in the corporate rate to 25 per cent. 'This race is not over who is cutting taxes. The question is: Who are you going to cut taxes for?

The answer Democrats regardless of Primary affiliation, would say, is to cut taxes in a way that averts the national crisis brewing in a system that, throughout this Republican Decade, has snubbed the concept of the Common Good that is the foundation of our Party and seals the Social contract implicit in the United States Constitution. 

And one more unifying theme:
Barack Obama's commitment to creating a green economy. While he dismayed many of his early backers, including myself, with a suspiciously Iowa-oriented interest in corn ethanol, Senator Obama's most recent policy papers indicate that he will promote sufficient energy development diversification so that agribusiness doesn’t benefit at the expense of energy security, ecosystem preservation, and national distribution of the economic benefits of cultivating vital alternatives to carbon-based fuels. For a comprehensive account of his energy policy, please go to:

Thursday, 26 June 2008

Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

Do you think Barack Obama is the candidate who can change America? Do you believe he can end the war in Iraq, provide affordable healthcare for all, and restore America's respect around the world?

Well, me too. But it's time to put your money where your mouth is.

This month Barack Obama made the historic decision to forego public financing and to place his campaign directly into the hands of his millions of small donors. Now he needs us to come through for him.

This month the DNC made the historic decision that they will refuse donations from lobbyists and 3rd party organisations. Now, we need to show them that for every dollar they'll lose from the special interests, they'll gain it back tenfold from an engaged electorate.

Next Monday at midnight, the financial reporting deadline ends, and I'm asking all of you to dig in to give just a few more of your hard earned dollars (at a very good exchange rate!) to prove the campaign can deliver a without special interest money.

Winning the Midwest

A series of new polls out has Obama ahead in:
  • Colorado Obama (D) 49%, McCain (R) 44%
  • Michigan Obama (D) 48%, McCain (R) 42%
  • Minnesota Obama (D) 54%, McCain (R) 37%
  • WisconsinObama (D) 52%, McCain (R) 39%
It turns out that nominating a candidate from the midwest does, as you might expect, increase the Democrats appeal in the region.

Now that, my friends, is Change We Can Believe In.

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Obama East to West - Our Events from Now To Election Day

Between now and election day, we play to hold at least one Obama London rally and meeting each month - so mark your diaries now.

The plan is to hold a rally (signs! banners! chanting! photographs!) on a different Lonon bridge each month right up until the weekend before the election. Each rally will be followed by a meeting in a nearby pub to include updates from campaign staffers and volunteer opportunities to assist our overseas and US Get Out The Vote efforts.

The first one is scheduled for Sunday, July 27th at 2:00 PM and will be held on Tower Bridge - stay tuned for further details.

After that, we'll be moving from East to West across London - provisional dates are as follows:

Saturday, August 16 – London Bridge

Saturday, September 13 – Millennium Bridge

Saturday, October 11 - Waterloo Bridge

Saturday, 1 November - Westminster Bridge (ELECTION WEEKEND!!!)

Monday, 23 June 2008

Deep Thoughts

Obama's decision to revoke public financing is, among other things, a huge risk. It will only pay off if you, and I, and millions of other Americans stay 100% committed and invested in him and his candidacy. If we decide, "well, that's the primary won, let's take the summer off," we'll be leaving him in the lurch and abandoning the country to the clutches of McCain.

In short - if you are a US citizen, he's going to need your cash.

Last month, McCain raised as much money as Barack did. The RNC is sitting on $50Mill more than the DNC.

Barack wants to run a 50 state campaign, reaching out to voters in every nook and cranny of our nation - plus the votes from Americans abroad. But a campaign like that is going to need every penny of the unprecedented funds that Obama plans to raise. Please give generously as much as you can afford, whether it's $5 or $500.

Howard Dean in London - Photos!

As I mentioned earlier - DNC Chair Howard Dean made a real impression on his London audience earlier today. And now hot off the presses - here are a few snaps from the event.

Here he is waiting to be introduced:

Here's our Democrats Abroad International Chair Christine Marques - fresh off the plane from Geneva - introducing the Governor:

Here are a couple shots of him giving his speech and answering questions:

My favorite thing about seeing Governor Dean? Well, what he said was all great stuff but I got a special kick out of his 50-state tie.

And you notice they're all blue...

Sunday, 22 June 2008

Howard Dean Addresses Democrats Abroad

Today I had the rare pleasure of seeing DNC Chair and former Governor Howard Dean at an event for Democrats Abroad here in London.

Addressing a packed house of (I'm estimating) over 200 fired up US Voters, Dean was characteristically smart and passionate - a combination that is going to do our party a lot of good come November.

He spoke in his initial remarks about the importance of bringing the party together, and reminded us all that those people who supported Senator Clinton are feeling deeply hurt and personally insulted - not because their candidate lost which, as he said, we have all experienced and moved on from, but because things were said in the media that were sexist and that many women understandably took as a personal attack on themselves.

Moving into the general election, however, he convinced me that this Party has never been more ready for action than it is today. Dean's 50-state strategy has already started to pay dividends with earlier victories in statewide Secretary of State elections across the country that are going to ensure that ALL our votes are counted.

He also talked about our now fully up and running voter database that is able to target voters with detailed consumer information, and an amazing GPS system that the Obama campaign has now adopted from the DNC, that identifies target addresses in the immediate neighborhood of a potential volunteer so that our activists can maximise their effectiveness in thier local communities.

And so much more. Dean is an outstanding leader of this party, and doubly impressive to me because he has truly understood the crucial role of the voter group he was addressing today - Americans Abroad.

I've got pictures from the event, which I'll process over the next couple days so keep your eyes peeled for those.

Obama London Meeting - Now with Pictures!

My thanks to the lovely and amazing Posey Furnish for the pictures she took at out meeting on Thursday night - a few samples of which you can see below.

And by the way, while I'm on the subject of Posey - she is the founder of the UK Mamas for Obama Facebook Group, which I highly recommend you join if you're, ya know, a mama. For Obama. In the UK.