Obama Team Won't Promote Him as Racial Pioneer

Obama team focuses on message of unity, not historic status
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 19, 2009 4:00 PM CST
President-elect Barack Obama, left, greets Marisa Tomei, center, and Shakira during the "We Are One: Opening Inaugural Celebration at the Lincoln Memorial."   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
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(Newser) – Barack Obama's inauguration as the first black president tomorrow will make history, but don't expect him to dwell on that point, Politico reports. The president-elect's team is weaving a narrative not about a racial milestone, but about unity—just look at the diversity of yesterday's We Are One festivities.

Obama has come out against "the temptation to view my candidacy through a purely racial lens," although plenty of reminders of the Civil Rights movement surround tomorrow's swearing-in. But Obama's inauguration spokeswoman notes that although powerful and emotional, "This is not a celebration of an election—it is a celebration of our common values."