This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
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Mayor Pete: The Obama Clone
The Recount tweeted a brilliant Twitter video paralleling the speeches of Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Barack Obama. Even before this viral outing of plagiarism, many could hear the Obama-isms. The press touched on the Buttigieg/Obama similarities as early as February 5, 2020, a few days after the Iowa caucuses.
The Washington Post called Buttigieg an “Obama clone,” indicating the striking similarities: “Buttigieg’s Monday night victory address sounded as if it was written by an Obama speechwriter, with talk of ‘unifying a rising American majority'” and stressing the importance of “hope.”
Buttigieg’s Nevada Caucus Hail Mary
After losing the Nevada caucuses on Saturday, Buttigieg tweeted about how “one light” from a supporter’s iPhone after the power went off at a campaign event sparked a movement that would light up the entire country. It sounded a lot like a famous speech by Barack Obama in 2008. Daily Dot elaborates, “Obama’s speech originated in 2008 during his first presidential campaign.”
“‘One voice can change the room. And if the voice can change a room, it can change a city. And if it can change a city, it can change a state. And if it can change a state, it can change a nation. And if it can change the nation, it can change the world.’ Obama would say at the time while on the campaign trail, ‘Are you fired up? Ready to go! Fired up, ready to go!’ The ‘fired up, ready to go’ chant became a rallying cry among his supporters.” President Obama tweeted the same battle cry the day before his reelection.
Obama’s Signature Style
Pete Buttigieg’s strategy for winning the upcoming presidential election is to copy former President Obama. Plagiaris.org defines the act of Plagiarism as an “ethical infraction and a violation of your school or workplace’s honor code. If you’re caught plagiarizing, you can be punished by your school, fired from your job, or even have your career ruined.”
At the end of the day, Buttigieg hopes talking like Obama and using his words and mannerisms will bring him the Democratic nomination. This is due to the fact Barack Obama was a wonderful speaker as president for eight years. He had the ability to mesmerize people with his voice and message. Many tout Obama’s 2004 keynote speech at the Democratic National Convention in Boston as the speech that made him president.
The one-term senator from Illinois spoke to the group and, in the words of Thinkr, “Democrats across the country knew they had seen the future of their Party.” In a Thinkr video spotlighting Obama’s technique in his 2004 speech, Robert Lehrman, Chief Speechwriter for Vice President Gore and Professor of Speechwriting at American University, said, “There are three things that Obama does that really makes that speech effective. He wants concrete detail, he likes story, and he loves antithesis, the use of repetition and structure to show contrast.”
For example, “There is not a liberal America. There is not a conservative America, there is one America.” PJ Media elaborates, “For years Barack Obama reused and recycled Deval Patrick’s old ‘no red America, no blue America, just the United States of America’ speech written by their mutual political spirit animal David Axelrod. Obama, ahem, borrowed Elizabeth Warren’s ‘you didn’t build that’ trope to denigrate initiatives by business owners to support the idea that government help was really responsible for your success.”
Obama had the gift and ability to sell the speeches and his policies to the audience. He sounded sincere and seemed to honestly conveyed his feelings on policies and positions. No one could deny that it was his greatest asset. However, without a teleprompter, he was lost. He could not do what President Trump does and talk about things off the cuff, commenting on the efficacy of what is happening in real-time. This happens to be one of President Trump’s greatest assets.
Is Mayor Pete Being Lazy?
Pete Buttigieg comes across as an aw-shucks good guy. He carries all of the legacy Democrat talking points. From a progressive and liberal perspective, there are certain points that a candidate must make. These points convey to his audience that he is sincere about the plight of others and tow the line with the Democrat platform narrative – inequity for the masses.
The Democrats attempt to sell politics of inequity to bring people together. Once they, the Democrats, lay a foundation of inequality, they can bring people together to fight it. However, looking closely at Mayor Pete’s speeches, one has to wonder about the sincerity of his message. Are these his feelings or the tried and true Democrat message peddled by candidates every election season?
Add to that, not only are they the same messages, they are not in his own words. Mayor Pete decided to skip over that process and use someone else’s words and hope nobody noticed. It is admirable to fight a fight for those who do not have a voice. It is also expected though, that an individual would use their own words to convey that message – not someone else’s.
Not Acceptable in Politics or Academia
If you are going to use someone’s words, at least give them credit. Such as “President Obama once said,” then fill in the blanks. To boldly take them as your own… that is not the hallmark of a leader. It is the hallmark of a thief! If anyone saw the Movie Jumanji last year, the whole premise of the Movie was Fridge passing off his friend Spencer’s words as his own.
Now, if it is not good for High School English class, why would it be acceptable for a candidate? Especially one running for the highest office in the land. What kind of a candidate takes speeches from other candidates and passes them off as their own? Is this the quality of the man we want to be our president? Our media and the Democrat Party continuously rant about President Trump’s “ethics.” Then they make up things that quite honestly aren’t there or that he never said.
Unfortunately, the Democrat Party has a reluctance to look in the mirror and hold themselves accountable by their own standards. What are the ethics of an individual that has decided on more than one occasion to steal the words from one candidate, and pass them off as his own? That isn’t ethical, it is wrong, and Mayor Pete should know that.
Mayor Pete, as a former military officer, should know that from a military perspective. In the armed forces, plagiarism is an Article 15 offense for Patterns of Misconduct – it is possibly a court-martial offense. Mayor Pete should know too well the effects of plagiarism on a candidate. Just ask Joe Biden about his run for president in 1988.
Joe Biden and the Tale of the Tapes
Prior to Joe Biden’s 1988 presidential run, he was leading in the polls. After the details came out about his plagiarism, it was over for Biden. He has never been a true presidential candidate since – until now (if you can call this run a true run). The Recount’s viral video brings out five instances of Barack Obama plagiarism. If history repeats, this should mark the end of Buttigieg’s campaign.
Understandably, Mayor Pete wanted to convey a message. Mind that these are stump speeches. He and his writers had studied these speeches and committed them to memory. One would easily assume that Buttigieg knew what he was saying came from Obama. Would it be difficult to frame each sentence slightly differently to convey the same message? Or is he just lazy, as well as unethical?
What is the Best Way Forward?
Life on the campaign trail can be grueling. It is difficult, and it is not without moments of wondering how to get to the next stop. Stealing words, however, to convey ideas to people is not what we want our presidential candidates to espouse. Much work is done on a daily basis by the MSM to parse every single word that President Trump says, then try to make them into a crime. This is an actual crime. I don’t know the next steps, but we as a people need to get real with one another.
Are we going to hold every American to the same standards, or will we continue to have standards for some and not for others? This is not an offense that should land Mayor Pete in prison. It is, though, characteristic of a Democrat strategy. That being to show my competitor’s faults when I get called on my own (Russia Gate was all about that!). Is President Trump right when he says there is selective judgment in our media outlets? The answer to Mayor Pete’s plagiarism will define this debate one way or another.