Barack Obama is in the midst of a barrage of media appearances as he works to overtake rival Hillary Clinton, the perceived front-runner for the Democratic party’s presidential nomination. Obama made a brief appearance on last week’s “Saturday Night Live” and this past week he granted a number of interviews to national media as well as to Radio Iowa.
Obama will be the guest on this weekend’s “Iowa Press” program on Iowa Public Television and after Friday’s taping, Obama spoke with reporters in the third news conference he’s held in Iowa.
“People are paying attention now, so it’s a good time to get out there,” Obama said. “Obviously we’re in a tight race here in Iowa. We’re in a tightening race in New Hampshire and we want to make sure that voters — when they’re now paying attention — have as much of a chance to hear from me as possible on the widest range of issues as we can offer.”
Obama describes the contest among himself, Clinton and John Edwards as a “horse race” and Obama contends it will come down to which candidate voters believe can “deliver” on their promises. “I feel more passionately than ever that we need some truth-telling, that we can’t just run the conventional, sort of mealy-mouthed political campaigns that we have in the past,” Obama said during the news conference. “I believe that that message that we’re delivering is resonating and that’s why we’re doing well here in Iowa.”
During his appearance on “Iowa Press” Obama suggested one of the main problems with Clinton’s candidacy is half of the American people indicate they wouldn’t consider voting for her and that leaves little margin for error next November if she’s the party’s nominee. Moments later, during the news conference, Obama resisted a direct verbal assault on Clinton, however. “I’m not interested in taking pot shots just for the sake of taking pot shots,” Obama said. “…I’m not somebody who dislikes Senator Clinton. Nor do I dislike Senator Edwards. I intend to win because my message is better and because I can be a more effective leader for the Democratic Party but I’m not going to manufacture stuff just for the sake of manufacturing it and so I feel very comfortable in being clear about where there are differences and being honest about where there’s common ground. I mean, after all, we’re running in the same party.”
Obama later told a New York Times reporter that he intended to support whomever is the nominee of the Democratic Party, but Obama quickly added that he expects it’ll be him.
Click on the audio link below to listen to the entire news conference.