Obama Speech Doesn't Sway Pundits

Supporters see glorious moment; detractor isn't too impressed
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 18, 2008 12:36 PM CDT
Tears flow down the face of supporter Marty Nesbitt as Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama D-Ill., speaks about race during a news conference in Philadelphia, Tuesday, March 18, 2008.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
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(Newser) – Barack Obama’s milestone speech on race today covered a lot of ground, and first reactions vary from laudatory on the left to unsatisfied on the right:

  • Greg Sargent of Talking Points Memo says the candidate went “big big big” by making his story a “realization of American history.” His defense of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright was "a break with political precedent, in that he's asking voters to look beyond the cartoon of controversy to see a more complex picture."

  • Andrew Sullivan of the Atlantic gushes over the “searing, nuanced, gut-wrenching, loyal, and deeply, deeply Christian speech” and hails Obama as "a candidate who does not merely speak as a Christian. He acts like a Christian."
  • Jim Geraghty of National Review Online is less impressed, calling the speech “wildly uneven” and grousing, "Obama will probably get a pass on this from the press, but he won't deserve it."