Just Words: Obama 'Plagiarism' Video
This story continues to evolve. It's a classic PR train wreck for Cliton. Today she is denying that her staffers were the first to accuse Obama of plagiarism.
Hillary Rodham Clinton says reporters, not her campaign, uncovered evidence of Democratic rival Barack Obama sharing speech lines with Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick.
She made the claim Tuesday despite the fact her campaign posted video clips on YouTube illustrating similarities in the speeches and has suggested in several instances that the shared lines amount to plagiarism.
not us making this charge, it's the media," Clinton told Honolulu
television station KITV Tuesday.[/q]
The Associated Press works very hard to prove Clinton wrong. It's refreshing to see the main stream media actually take up an issue with passion. No matter that they are just trying to themselves right and Clinton wrong.
FACT CHECK: Any suggestion that the story had a life of its own, apart from the Clinton campaign, is disingenuous.
The Associated Press, the Boston Globe and other news organizations have reported on instances in which Obama used some of Patrick's speech lines — often without attribution.
In the latest example, from a Democratic Party dinner Saturday night in Milwaukee, Obama repeated almost word for word part of a speech Patrick gave in 2006 extolling the importance of powerful oratory in politics. This was to rebut Clinton's charge that rhetoric is less important than results.
The New York Times reported the speech similarities Monday, having looked into them the day before. The story said the similarities "were highlighted by a rival campaign that did not want to be identified." The common lines were not characterized as plagiarism in the story.
The latest political hoopla surrounds a speech Obama gave on February 16th. Hillary Clinton has accused him of plagiarizing Deval Patrick. Watch this video which presents the two quotes one after the other. Yes, the idea is the same but it is hardly plagiarism, especially considering that the substantive lines spoken are also being 'plagiarism'. This attack seems to represent a new low in the Clinton campaign. She must really be desperate.
Obama says he and Patrick - a good friend - share ideas all the time. Patrick says he is not upset at all, and the Obama team point to Hillary and McCain both using his "fired up and ready to go" line recently.
Pressed on the matter, Obama said that Patrick "suggested that we use these lines…I thought they were good lines. I’m sure I should have [given him credit], I didn’t this time.”
What I find even more interesting then the plagiarism mumbojumbo is the substance of the quote. Both Patrick and Obama invoke some of the greatest lines of 20th century political rhetoric as evidence that words in and of them self have value. However, all these lines were backed by substantive action. Be it Churchill ("All we have to fear etc.") or King ("I have a dream") and I think this in fact proves the opposite point that if these had just been words without action they would have been meaningless. So yes, words are only meaningful when accompanied with action.
Sen. Barack Obama said Monday that he doesn't think it's a big deal that he borrowed lines from his friend Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, although he probably should have given him credit.
Patrick said during his gubernatorial campaign a year and a half ago that words matter, like "I have a dream" and "all men are created equal."
Obama used the same lines Saturday night in Wisconsin. Obama said that Patrick suggested he use the lines to respond to Hillary Rodham Clinton's suggestion that Obama is more of a talker than a doer.
Clinton spokesman Howard Wolfson accused Obama of plagiarizing Patrick, and that's particularly troubling since Obama's appeal is based in large part on his rhetorical skills.
"It raises questions about the premise of his candidacy," Wolfson told reporters in a conference call.
Obama, D-Ill., says that's going too far.
"Now hold on a second. Let's see — I've written two books, wrote most of my speeches," Obama told reporters at a news conference after touring a titanium plant.
"I'm happy to give Deval credit, as I give credit to a lot people for spurring all kinds of ideas," he said. "But I think that it is fair to say that everything that we've been doing in generating excitement and the interest that people have in the election is based on the core belief in me that we need change in America."