Hiller Instinct: Obama backs Patrick
The Hiller Instinct: Hiller Instinct: Obama backs Patrick
Democratic Senator Barack Obama backing Deval Patrick on the eve of the party's convention in Worcester.
In tonight's Hiller Instinct 7's Andy Hiller says the endorsement should mean money and momentum for Patrick, and maybe some votes.
Politics and celebrity intersected again as Senator Barack Obama of Illinois tried to make Deval Patrick Governor of Massachusetts.
Since his breakout speech at the Democratic National Convention in Boston, Obama has become one of his party's brightest stars...and Patrick hopes the endorsement brings him some stardust:
"People tell me I talk pretty good, so in a rally with 2,000 people, I can maybe add a little excitement to it," US Senator Barak Obama said.
Big name endorsements are routine in Massachusetts...
In the last Governor's race, former President Bill Clinton spoke up for Shannon O'Brien, while both President Bush and Vice-President Cheney chipped in for Mitt Romney. These are "powerpol" endorsements, as in "if those powerful politicians like him, or her, why shouldn't I?"
Romney also campaigned with former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, after 9/11 made Giuliani a national symbol of patriotism and strength...raising the value of his support.
But endorsements that sound like home-runs can turn into strike-outs. Take Curt Schilling's 2004 pitch for George Bush:
"President Bush is the man to lead us through the next four years to get this country where it needs to be."
But then, in a major league reversal, Schilling balked, saying it's not his place to offer up unsolicited political opinions.
Endorsements can also be awkward. Exhibit "A": John McCain's staged endorsement of George Bush in 2000, after their bitter primary battle
"I love you man," George W. Bush said.
"This is for you John," Bruce Springsteen said.
John Kerry's campaign sometimes sounded like a rock show, because he hoped young voters would be influenced by rock star endorsements.
So Bruce Springsteen sang his praises.
While Ben Affleck cemented the celebrity image...
You're looking at another power of celebrity endorsements: the power to attract media.
Barack Obama gets Deval Patrick on the news tonight, and in newspapers tomorrow.
It may not be fair, but don't expect quite the same coverage for the Mayor of Quincy and two State Reps who endorsed Chris Gabrieli today.
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