The vapidity of the “speech writer” meme
posted at 5:15 pm on September 4, 2008 by Ed Morrissey
Do the Democrats really want to keep attacking Sarah Palin’s wildly successful speech on the basis that she has speechwriters? That was the latest desperation meme surfacing in the media today, but there’s one problem with it; every major politician has speechwriters. That includes Barack Obama himself, who had a problem with his speechwriter and chief political strategist, David Axelrod, when he began recycling passages from his other clients:
“Don’t tell me words don’t matter,” he said in his remarks. “ ‘I have a dream.’ Just words? ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal.’ Just words? ‘We have nothing to fear but fear itself.’ Just words? Just speeches?”
The passage was similar to one used by Mr. Patrick in response to similar criticism.
And let’s not forget the passages Obama also borrowed from Mario Cuomo’s 1984 Democratic convention:
In the course of his news conference, Mr. Biden also acknowleged that he was mistaken when he implied on several occasions that it was Denis Healey, a prominent British Labor Party official, who had given him a videotape of another speech whose words the Senator later used. In London, Mr. Healey’s office denied giving Mr. Biden the tape, and today the Senator said that in fact it had not come from Mr. Healey.
In addition, Mr. Biden said that in his talks invoking that speech, by Neil Kinnock, the Labor Party leader, he had miscast some of his own forebears, painting them as having rather more humble origins than they in fact did. For example, borrowing Mr. Kinnock’s sentiments, Mr. Biden had said he was ”the first in his family ever to go to university.” In fact, Mr. Biden said today, ”there are Finnegans, my mother’s family, that went to college.”
Do the Democrats really want this debate?