Wednesday, February 13, 2008

After grabbing Hillary's voters, Obama's powerful victory speech links the drive to end the Iraq war with economic reform in a new attack on McCain.

And his victories Tuesday, especially in Maryland and Virginia, erode the base of support for Hillary Clinton, as he scores with women, men and union members, although Hillary still garners an important advantage -- although shrinking -- among white women. As the AP reports:

In Virginia, Obama even won among white men, getting 58 percent of their votes while Hillary Rodham Clinton took her base, white women, by an unusually small margin. In Virginia she got 53 percent to Obama's 47 percent among white women. But in Maryland, Clinton won overall among whites, winning by a wide margin among white women but only tying Obama among white men.

But his speech in Wisconsin shows how he's positioning himself to take on McCain, even as his campaign gathers strength with voters she'll need in Ohio, Pennsyvlania and Texas. He said, in part:

John McCain is an American hero. We honor his service to our nation. But his priorities don’t address the real problems of the American people, because they are bound to the failed policies of the past.

George Bush won’t be on the ballot this November, but his war and his tax cuts for the wealthy will.

When I am the nominee, I will offer a clear choice. John McCain won’t be able to say that I ever supported this war in Iraq, because I opposed it from the beginning. Senator McCain said the other day that we might be mired for a hundred years in Iraq, which is reason enough to not give him four years in the White House.

If we had chosen a different path, the right path, we could have finished the job in Afghanistan, and put more resources into the fight against bin Laden; and instead of spending hundreds of billions of dollars in Baghdad, we could have put that money into our schools and hospitals, our road and bridges – and that’s what the American people need us to do right now.

And I admired Senator McCain when he stood up and said that it offended his “conscience” to support the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy in a time of war; that he couldn’t support a tax cut where “so many of the benefits go to the most fortunate.” But somewhere along the road to the Republican nomination, the Straight Talk Express lost its wheels, because now he’s all for them.

Well I’m not. We can’t keep spending money that we don’t have in a war that we shouldn’t have fought. We can’t keep mortgaging our children’s future on a mountain of debt. We can’t keep driving a wider and wider gap between the few who are rich and the rest who struggle to keep pace. It’s time to turn the page.

See Barack's speech for yourself:

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