Barack Obama Quotes:
- April 6, 2008 – “I would like somebody who knows about a bunch of stuff that I’m not as expert on,” the senator is quoted on Huffington Post today.“I think a lot of people assume that might be some sort of military thing to make me look more commander in chief like.“Ironically, this is an area — foreign policy is the area where I am probably most confident that I know more and understand the world better than Sen. Clinton or Sen. McCain.
- On small town America: “And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”
- 03/18/08 “I can no more disown him than I can disown the black community. I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother – a woman who helped raise me, a woman who sacrificed again and again for me, a woman who loves me as much as she loves anything in this world, but a woman who once confessed her fear of black men who passed by her on the street, and who on more than one occasion has uttered racial or ethnic stereotypes that made me cringe.
- 3/18/08 – “Anger over welfare and affirmative action helped forge the Reagan Coalition. Politicians routinely exploited fears of crime for their own electoral ends. Talk show hosts and conservative commentators built entire careers unmasking bogus claims of racism while dismissing legitimate discussions of racial injustice and inequality as mere political correctness or reverse racism.”
- 3/18/08 – ” It is not enough to give health care to the sick, or jobs to the jobless, or education to our children. But it is where we start. It is where our union grows stronger. “
- 1/18/2001 – “...just to take a, sort of a realist perspective…there’s a lot of change going on outside of the Court, um, that, that judges essentially have to take judicial notice of. I mean you’ve got World War II, you’ve got uh, uh, uh, the doctrines of Nazism, that, that we are fighting against, that start looking uncomfortably similar to what we have going on, back here at home.”
- “To that extent, as radical as I think people try to characterize the Warren Court, it wasn’t that radical. It didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the founding fathers in the Constitution, at least as its been interpreted and Warren Court interpreted in the same way, that generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. Says what the states can’t do to you. Says what the Federal government can’t do to you, but doesn’t say what the Federal government or State government must do on your behalf, and that hasn’t shifted and one of the, I think, tragedies of the civil rights movement was, um, because the civil rights movement became so court focused I think there was a tendency to lose track of the political and community organizing and activities on the ground that are able to put together the actual coalition of powers through which you bring about redistributive change. In some ways we still suffer from that.”
- “Its better for everybody if we spread the wealth around”
Michelle Obama Quotes:
- January 23, 2008 – “We don’t like being pushed outside of our comfort zones. You know it right here on this campus. You know people sitting at different tables, y’all living in different dorms. I was there. Y’all not talking to each another, taking advantage of the fact that you’re in this diverse community because sometimes it’s easier to hold onto your own stereotypes and misconceptions, it makes you feel justified in your ignorance. That’s America. So the challenge for us is, are we ready for change?”
- February 19, 2008 – “What we’ve learned over this year is that hope is making a comeback. It is making a comeback, and let me tell you something, for the first time in my adult lifetime, I’m really proud of my country, and not just because Barack has done well, but because I think people are hungry for change. And I have been desperate to see our country moving in that direction and just not feeling so alone in my frustration and disappointment. I’ve seen people who are hungry to be unified around some basic, common issues, and it’s made me proud.”
- From the New Yorker Interview: [Michelle] Obama begins with a broad assessment of life in America in 2008, and life is not good: we’re a divided country, we’re a country that is “just downright mean,” we are “guided by fear,” we’re a nation of cynics, sloths, and complacents. “We have become a nation of struggling folks who are barely making it every day,” she said, as heads bobbed in the pews. “Folks are just jammed up, and it’s gotten worse over my lifetime. And, doggone it, I’m young. Forty-four!”
- From the New Yorker Interview: Used to be, she will say, that you could count on a decent education in the neighborhood. But now there are all these charter schools and magnet schools that you have to “finagle” to get into. (Obama herself attended a magnet school, but never mind.) Health care is out of reach (“Let me tell you, don’t get sick in America”), pensions are disappearing, college is too expensive, and even if you can figure out a way to go to college you won’t be able to recoup the cost of the degree in many of the professions for which you needed it in the first place. “You’re looking at a young couple that’s just a few years out of debt,” Obama said. “See, because, we went to those good schools, and we didn’t have trust funds. I’m still waiting for Barack’s trust fund. Especially after I heard that Dick Cheney was s’posed to be a relative or something. Give us something here!”
- “We have lost the understanding that, in a democracy, we have a mutual obligation to one another,” the would-be first lady said at a rally last month. “That we have to compromise and sacrifice for one another in order to get things done.”
- We have lost the understanding that in a democracy, we have a mutual obligation to one another — that we cannot measure the greatness of our society by the strongest and richest of us, but we have to measure our greatness by the least of these. That we have to compromise and sacrifice for one another in order to get things done. That is why I am here, because Barack Obama is the only person in this who understands that. That before we can work on the problems, we have to fix our souls. Our souls are broken in this nation.
- Most Americans, she said, don’t want much. “They don’t want the whole pie,” she told the women. “There are some who do, but most Americans feel blessed just being able to thrive a little bit. But that is becoming even more out of reach.”
- “If we don’t wake up as a nation with a new kind of leadership…for how we want this country to work, then we won’t get universal health care,” she said. “The truth is, in order to get things like universal health care and a revamped education system, then someone is going to have to give up a piece of their pie so that someone else can have more.”