Obama makes hay at Jefferson-Jackson Day Dinner in Iowa.
The leading Democratic presidential candidates showed up for the Iowa Democratic Party’s big Jefferson Jackson Dinner Saturday night.
Five of them gave really good speeches.
Barack Obama’s was excellent.
It was one of the best of his campaign. The passion he showed should help him close the gap on Hillary Clinton by tipping some undecided caucus-goers his way. His oratory was moving and he successfully contrasted himself with the others - especially Clinton - without being snide or nasty about it.
Historically, the Iowa party’s “JJ” dinner is a landmark event in Democratic presidential caucus campaigns. All the key party activists, donors and players from the state are present. . . .
A candidate who does well at a JJ is quickly in the political buzz around Iowa. A candidate who does poorly can be quickly written off by some important players in the party. Candidates also know the event provides them with an opportunity to sound new themes, launch new attacks or mount a defense of their weaknesses. Local and national observers show up to chronicle the changes.
Obama was particularly impressive Saturday night. Should he win the Iowa caucuses, Saturday’s dinner will be remembered as one of the turning points in his campaign in here, a point where he laid down the marker and began closing on Clinton, the national frontrunner.