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Sweet: Richardson, in endorsing Obama says Obama rejects the politics of pitting race against race. Text.

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WASHINGTON---New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson endorsing Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) for president on Friday praises his former Democratic presidential rival as an extraordinary, inspiring figure who opposed the Iraq war. Richardson also lauded Obama for his speech dealing with his relationship with his controversal pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

"He asked every American to see the reality and the pain of other Americans, so that together we can rise above that which has divided us," said Richardson.

Text of Richardson speech click below.

Governor Richardson’s Prepared Remarks (not as delivered)

Barack Obama Rally Speech

Portland, Oregon

Friday, March 21, 2008

My friends,

Earlier this week, an extraordinary American gave a historic speech.

Senator Barack Obama addressed the issue of race with the eloquence and sincerity and decency and optimism we have come to expect of him.

He did not seek to evade tough issues or to soothe us with comforting half-truths.

Rather, he inspired us by reminding us of the awesome potential residing in our own responsibility.

Senator Obama could have given a safer speech.

He is, after all, well ahead in the delegate count for our party’s nomination.

He could have just waited for the controversy over the deplorable remarks of Reverend Wright to subside, as it surely would have.

Instead, Senator Obama showed us once again what kind of leader he is.

He spoke to us as adults.

He asked us to ponder the weight of our racially-divided past, to rise above it, and to seize the opportunity to carry forward the work of many patriots of all races, who struggled and died to bring us together.

Senator Obama reminded us that cynicism is not realism, and that hope is not folly.

He called upon us not just to dream about a less racially-divided America, but also to do the hard work needed to build such an America.

He asked every American to see the reality and the pain of other Americans, so that together we can rise above that which has divided us.

He appealed to the best in us.

As a Hispanic, I was particularly touched by his words.

I have been troubled by the demonization of immigrants--specifically Hispanics-- by too many in this country.

Hate crimes against Hispanics are rising as a direct result and now, in tough economic times, people look for scapegoats and I fear that people will continue to exploit our racial differences—and place blame on others not like them.

We all know the real culprit -- the disastrous economic policies of the Bush Administration!

Senator Obama has started a discussion in this country long overdue and rejects the politics of pitting race against race.

He understands clearly that only by bringing people together, only by bridging our differences can we all succeed together as Americans.

His words are those of a courageous, thoughtful and inspiring leader, who understands that a house divided against itself cannot stand.

And, after 8 years of George W. Bush, we will desperately need such a leader.

Our national security and our global standing have been gravely damaged by the divisive partisanship of recent years.

We need a President who can bring us together as a nation so that we can face urgent global challenges and repair the damage done in the last 7 years.

Barack Obama will make the historic and vital investments into renewable energy, to help create clean energy jobs and fight global warming.

Barack knows that the safety and future of every American child requires that we restore our shared sense of national purpose, so that we can then set about the hard work of rebuilding our alliances and rehabilitating our image in a dangerous world.

By uniting our nation, we can reverse America’s global decline.

We need a realistic, principled, and bipartisan foreign policy again.

We must restore our international reputation, our influence and our capacity to lead others.

America must become the beacon for the world again.

We need a foreign policy based upon American ideals, and not upon the mere ideology of a President.

A foreign policy of diplomacy and respect for international human rights.

We prospered and prevailed in the Cold War because both our friends and our enemies knew that containment of the Soviet Union and the promotion of democratic values was not a Democratic or a Republican policy – it was an American policy--the very essence of what America was.

Senator Obama understands the importance of realism, principle, and bipartisanship in foreign policy.

He opposed the Iraq war from the beginning because he knew that, despite what the Administration claimed, this war would not be easy.

He also opposed the war because he saw President Bush’s rush to employ military force, and to do so without the support of most of our allies, as dangerous and unwarranted.

And he saw the war also for what it so quickly became – a terrible source of partisan political division -- and a catastrophic distraction from the war that had united us against the real threat posed by Al Qaeda.

Now, I trust him to do what is so long overdue—End the Iraq war and bring our troops home!!

I know Senator Obama well.

I first got to know him when I chaired the last Democratic National Convention, where he gave that wonderful keynote address.

And then, last year, as we campaigned against each other for the Presidency, I came to fully appreciate his steadfast patriotism and remarkable talents.

I also felt a kinship with him because we both had one foreign-born parent and we both lived abroad as children.

In part because of these experiences, Barack and I share a deep sense of our nation’s special responsibilities in the world.

[Turn toward Obama and smile]

Barack Obama, you are an extraordinary leader who has shown courage, sound judgment and wisdom throughout your career.

You understand the security challenges of the 21st century, and you will be an outstanding Commander in Chief.

Above all, you will be a President who brings this nation together and restores American global leadership.

You will make every American proud to be an American, and I am very proud indeed to endorse your candidacy.

Before concluding my remarks, I would like to say that we are blessed to have two great American leaders and great Democrats running for President.

My great affection and admiration for Hillary Clinton and President Bill Clinton will never waver.

It is time, however, for Democrats to stop fighting amongst ourselves and to prepare for the tough fight we will face against John McCain in the Fall.

The 1990’s were a decade of peace and prosperity because of the competent and enlightened leadership of the Clinton administration, but it is now time for a new generation of leadership to lead America forward.

Barack Obama will be a historic and a great President, who can bring us the change we so desperately need by bringing us together as a nation here at home and with our allies abroad.

I know that all Democrats will work tirelessly to get him elected.

It is my distinct honor and privilege to introduce to you the next President of the United States, my friend, Barack Obama.

###

16 Comments

I listened to that endorsement and Barack's speech afterwards and Obama, to me, must be not just an ordinary human being but indeed an Advanced Soul, come to lead America out of this mess, if we no if They, let them, but we too have a say in this Democracy, this Barack well knows. Through this trial-by-fire, recently experienced by him, he has been Humble, Noncombative, Noncritical and committed to doing his work on this earth to make it a more better and perfect union. He has kept his promise not to tear one another down but to build us up. He has courage in the face of fire, not a courage of anger but a courage of goodwill and harmlessness in spite of the difficulties. That is why he can say with honesty that he can work with the other side because where others see hate, he sees love and the good within an individual... that takes a special person to see the good when bad is all around that person and may be to bring that good out within that person.. to transform them, while all the time transforming theirself.

Did he really script in "turn toward Obama and smile?" Was that from his office--the scripted bit of political theatre?

Richarson: "Si Se Puede!"

....Obama, perhaps buoyed by the endorsement on a day that his comments to a Philadelphia radio station (Jan's note: Obama called his grandmother "a typical white woman") have caused a ruckus among cable news outlets, was in rare form, giving one of the fieriest speeches he has delivered in weeks.

"It's not just a change in parties," said the IL Sen. " It's not just putting forward a bunch of 10-point plans. It's restoring a sense that this government is working for you and fighting for you and is of and by the United States of America."

He and Richardson took the stage together, and they hugged twice, when Richardson turned to Obama to say he endorsed him for president and at the end of his speech. The largely white audience in Portland shouted, screamed and chanted "Yes We Can!" To which Richardson, who had sprinkled some Spanish into his speech, shouted back, "Si se puede! Si se puede!"

(NBC/NJ's ASWINI ANBURAJAN)

Use your common sense. A deal has been cut. Obama is very weak amongst hispanics. Therefore, Axelrod has cut a deal with Richardson. Whose hispanic. My guess: Either VP or Sec. of State..........BTW, I listened to the hate on a WVON talkshow this morning. All you African-Americans who like to name-call us whites (I heard "blue-eyed devils", "white boys", "whitey") remember one thing: 7 out of every 10 voters come November are going to be us white people. Just look at the numbers. So why on earth are all you folks playing the race-card, insulting us, calling us names? Obama can NOT win without at least getting 44% of the white vote. Thats figuring 95% of the black vote goes to Obama. Again, use your common sense, Obama can NOT win without a sizeable white vote.

This is a major step! in the right direction. The race baiting crap is over! Fox News will play the sound bite until November if they had it there way. What Rev J. Wright said, was said a million times, in most African American churches! We just have a different view on life in America. Do you blame us! The Mexican vote, along with the African American vote, plus the White Liberals, is all Obama needs for the Democratic nominee. Hillary had her chance with Bill! Move on Lady ! It's a wrap!Obama has raised the race question, that's been avoided for decades. Things aren't alright in America. White people would like you to believe that crap, but the World knows better. I pray that this issue of race finally comes to the forefront. We need to get this matter over with, so that America can move forward. My race is mad, frustrated and tired. I think we had better talk about this situation, before things get really out of hand. I, myself, have no problems rocking the American boat or as they say Business as usual. Things have got to change, the playing fields must be leveled. until then, I promise, things will only get much worser than a preacher giving a sermon.The Mexicans are joining the ride, lets hope America can change and join the ride also.

While Richardson was making his speech, I think that the look on Obama's face was that of somebody waiting for people to come up and kiss his feet. That is just the way he looked to me, I am not suggesting that that was really what he was thinking.

Julie--If you drink more of the koolaid, you'll get diabetes. "Advanced soul"--what? Democracy isn't run by leaders, but by we the people. And some of us people are upset Obama hasn't voted against the war YET, hasn't ended spying on you and me AS WE SPEAK, hasn't really come clean about Rezko and Daley style funding patterns for his unprecedented quick rise in power, hasn't fully supported FREE SPEECH when legitimate questions about him are asked.
The fact that a man who worked for Hilary's husband does not now want to support her tells me Richardson is more of a sexist than I suspected. There's a neat article in the Nation about third wave feminish bashing the second wavers. I think that's what's happening here. It alarms me that the third wavers care not one whit about how sorry Hilary's been treated in the media. Wake up before it's too late, sister.

This endorsement does not surprise me. It is the "men's club only" protecting one of their own.

Well "golden oldie" in your diatribe about Richardson's endorsement of Obama being sexist you overlooked the possibility that Sen. Clinton's bare-knuckle tactics could have actually swayed his decision. While they succeeded in winning Ohio and Texas, they may have also strengthened Richardson's resistance to her. I wouldn't be surprised if John Edwards followed suit soon.

Say what you want about the Obama campaign, but he personally hasn't made any of the type of attacks she's made against him and Lord knows she's left herself open plenty of times.

Bare knuckle tactics? You mean like calling Hilary racist for stating a FACT about LJB signing the civil rights act? You mean calling Bill racist for saying that it's a fairy tale to say that Obama is anti the Iraq war when in fact he's voted for the damned thing over and over even while making demeaning comments about Hilary--who was doing more for civil rights when he was still SELLING OUT POOR PEOPLE IN SOUTH SIDE CHICAGO WITH SLUMLORD REZKO? You mean calling Chelsea a whore, basically--what does pimping out mean exactly?
I still haven't heard an apology for Geraldine who was and is anything but racist.
There's racism in this campaign. It stinks to high hell. And it comes from Obama.
Give it a rest.

Oh--and fed up--one more attack theme --repeated often by michelle who began the campaign making fun of hilary for having a husband who enjoyed sex outside of the marriage.
Please.
The attacks began from the Obamas. Then they scream bloody murder when anybody points out anything that conflicts with their propaganda.

It appears to be very notable that Representative Murtha just endorsed Hillary Clinton.

Strangely, I found that his endorsement received very little press attention, despite how interesting the story is that such an anti-war Congressman has decided to support Clinton, regardless of her original vote on Iraq. Murtha has expressed that he truly believes that Clinton is better equipped to be Commander in Chief. From what I observed when he was interviewed, he is passionate about ending the war and working to restore the U.S. to its pre-war condition (economy and otherwise), and believes that Clinton has what it takes to get the job done because she is an experienced, pragmatic leader who is ready to work with both parties (as she has already been doing in the Senate) and, yes, who knows that it will take hard work to get both parties to work together (and not just pretty words and a teleprompter -- yes, those of you who think that Senator Obama speaks extemporaneously in his speeches, think again -- he is really using a teleprompter).

So interesting that Representative Murtha didn't back Obama.

Anyone please tell me why Hillary is accused of stealing the election if superdelgates vote for her. While Obama is sucking up to as many delgates as possible. Also how sly is Obama to say unite no negative comments will come from my mouth. However his staff makes negative statements about Hillary. I have seen thru Obama smoke screen and it shows a man hiding behind his staff and others. Smart Politician.

Why is it that some people are so afraid of change?
How is it that a man of integrity can be called a racist when you know it is not true?
Why can't we as a people move in a direction of peace in our on country?
Why is it that some can point thier finger but yet won't take the blame when you know you are wrong?
Why is it that when you say things people hear what they want to hear not what you say?
Why do people say I miss spoke when everyone knows you have told a blatant LIE? (Hilary)
Obama for president is the right thing to do.
We need to get back to what matters our economy,the war and health care.
Let's reclaim our place in the world #1
People don't trust America's judgement anymore does'nt that matter.
What we do and how we act as Americans is observed by all other countries.
Keep that in mind while some of your mouths spew hatered.
When all is said and done we still have to live together we may as well find a way to do that.
I feel with Obama's leadership we can.

My question to all you Obama supporters is what is going to change. There has been so much coverup of Obama's record by the media.

I was taught by my family that nobody owes you but you do for yourself and your family first and foremost. This is a major problem with this Country because everybody thinks the Government is supposed to bail you out.

If people want Big Government then go ahead and vote for these trolls.

Also to Anonymous before you go and judge other people, take a look in the mirror.

Fed Up, your completely wrong. Geraldine lady made a big racial splash with her comments. You don't have to be black to know that. I'm white and I could see it as clear as day. Clinton's tactics are republican-like.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on March 21, 2008 11:55 AM.

Sweet: Superdelegates take notice--Richardson endorses Obama on Friday was the previous entry in this blog.

Sweet: Menu for the White House 2008 Easter Brunch is the next entry in this blog.

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