Obama’s fine print on convention speech tickets
posted at 8:50 am on August 13, 2008 by Ed Morrissey
“You are required to volunteer.” That would normally be a splendid example of an oxymoron, but it also describes the process for those who want to see Barack Obama speak at Invesco Field as he accepts his nomination. Instead of simply throwing open the doors to the public free of charge, as the Obama campaign publicly proposed, tickets get distributed on a pay-in-kind basis:
“I got a call that if I want the tickets I have to volunteer two shifts of three hours apiece — for one ticket. If I want two tickets, then it’s four shifts of two hours apiece,” said Berenice Christensen.
Another 7NEWS viewer sent an e-mail that said, “I received a call Monday saying I could ‘qualify’ for the tickets if I do 12 hours of volunteer work for the Obama campaign between now and Friday the 15th.”
The viewer e-mail goes on to say, “To work 40 hours at my job, get to and from work, get to and from the campaign office and complete the 12 hours in three days would be next to impossible.”
This raises some questions about the event. If the campaign requires people to work for several hours to acquire them, doesn’t that make this an in-kind contribution rather than volunteer work? If people who have already contributed to the limit for Obama perform work as compensation towards these tickets, then they could break campaign law by doing so.
Even without the campaign-finance issues, this looks very much like a bait-and-switch by Obama. The entire point of the Invesco address was to welcome everyone for free, perhaps because they wanted to ensure that the place was filled to capacity. Now, with everyone excited about attending this free event, Obama suddenly tells them that they can’t get a seat unless they work for him first.
Like most of Obama’s plans, nothing is free. We’ll pay one way or the other for every supposed giveaway in his policies. And in the end, he wants everyone working for him, while tossing hosannas at his feet and giving him the best optics he can possibly get.
One last thing: Obama didn’t require Germans in Berlin to work for him in order to cheer him at the Tiergarten. Why does Obama treat Germans better than Americans?