Obama/Biden Keep the Campaign Mojo Working

In an example of the ‘change’ coming, President-Elect Obama’s newest innovation is the Official Transition Website.

Two days post-election and Obama and his team have already put up a website.  As usual, Obama is following the Boy Scout motto “Be Prepared”.  No doubt the planning for this website began well before the General Election two days ago.  But, as much as it says about his preparation, it says a lot about how this administration will be different from President Bush’s.

The first thing you start to notice as a difference between Obama and Bush is the transparency of the incoming administration.  He is encouraging information sharing and input from the people who he is representing.  This is a far cry from the clandestine operations, in all facets, of the Bush Administration.

It also is an example that he will continue to use the power of the Internet to transform the Oval Office into an online virtual Oval Office.  In no small part, his success while building his grassroots effort and ongoing campaigning was due to his reliance on technology, particularly the internet.  The possibilities of how the Administration can go beyond a web page will be explored by the Obama team.  MSNBC (I believe) had a discussion about the supporter database that Obama has at his disposal.  Don’t discount the fact that this President will reach out individually (email, text message), beyond print, radio, and television, to personally touch citizens and help him push forward on his agenda, as well as explaining his positions.

This website also provides insight as to how he views the American people.  Whereas President Bush had no particular allegiance to his constituency, Obama is proving that his administration understands the honor and responsibility that the American people have put in front of him.  Using terms on his website such as “Your Administration” and a request for input entitled “It’s Your America, Share Your Ideas”  – shows that commitment.  Additionally, he knows that being a citizen is a responsibility to each of us too.  From his website:

The Obama Administration will call on Americans to serve in order to meet the nation’s challenges. President-Elect Obama will expand national service programs like AmeriCorps and Peace Corps and will create a new Classroom Corps to help teachers in underserved schools, as well as a new Health Corps, Clean Energy Corps, and Veterans Corps. Obama will call on citizens of all ages to serve America, by developing a plan to require 50 hours of community service in middle school and high school and 100 hours of community service in college every year. Obama will encourage retiring Americans to serve by improving programs available for individuals over age 55, while at the same time promoting youth programs such as Youth Build and Head Start.


Sound like John Kennedy?

This is a man who ‘gets it’.  While the idea of the first African-American President is powerful and gives hope that this country has moved forward or his Kennedy/Reagan-esque speeches can rally the American people, it is this demonstration of understanding and humble attitude that truly will be the lasting image Obama will leave on this country.  This man is special and he has come at a special time. 

The power of the presidency is awesome and the potential for corruption is great.  His limited time in Washington may affect his ability to stay focused.  But if he continues to engage the American people and surrounds himself with a mix of experienced Washington insiders (Rahm Emanuel) and outsiders (David Axelrod), he can stay true to his message.  I believe this is a President that, to his core, believes and cares about the American people and the opportunities this country presents.  This is a man who was a community organizer and went to get a law degree. Not to make himself rich, but to improve his ability to affect change.  This is a man who talks with such passion about the hope and future of this country, he cannot not be disingenuous.


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