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Is Michelle Obama Enough?


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I think its kind of a catch 22 no matter how its handled...

Scenario 1 - Obama shows - Every other country claims it was rigged in the United States favor (as always) and this is the only reason Chicago could win, even though the Europeans set the model for this.

Scenario 2 - Obama Doesn't show - The IOC feels snubbed and pushes votes elsewhere...

I think they are playing it pretty close to the vest here... This issue has a lot more weight than just the Olympics, If Obama leaves the US to rally for Chicago the Right wing conservatives will instantly jump on him for playing politics and not being focused on the tasks at hand (universal healthcare of note)

Having Michelle come with the Chicago delegates opens up the possibility to setup a security detail and plans without actually committing to anything... this way much like Tony Blair did for London he can possibly make an appearance if everything works out...and get in get out without wasting much time that he should be spending on current issues in the states...

As to Michelle by herself I think she’s better than nothing for sure, She also strikes me as not your average First lady in that she is extremely well educated and can make quite the impression herself.

I guess time will tell...

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No it's not enough... even with Hillary Clinton (she was there for NYC 2012...). Michele is not her husband... she will not have the same impact as THE president of the USA !!!!

But a general comment. Just showing is not enough for any head of state or superstar... They have to be there several days, and do as Tony & Cherry Blair in 2005, do a real lobbying but trying to see everybody, listen to them and show them interest... Not just to arrive at the last minute and check some hands (as Chirac did !).

Personally, i will myself arrive 5 days in advance... :D

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I think Michelle will be enough. Since Chicago is going first in the presentations, there will be a video clip message from Barrack wherein he sends his regrets and that he is tied up with the crucial Health Care bill, but in his stead, he sends his wife...and then Michelle will give her pitch. So that, plus maybe 2 days of schmoozing -- and wiht Chicago being first, that conjugal message will tie in, and I think after the 3 other presentations, the message will have entered the more savvy IOC members' minds that the US president is tied up with a very crucial matter at home but he sends his trusted partner instead.

And hopefully she will also stress that her husband has created the special office in his White House for the Olympics, etc., so that's a pretty powerful package to send to Copenhagen.

It also paints the picture that the other 2 less strong bids (Tokyo and Madrid) are doing full-court press because, in substance, they are the less desirable bids at this time. Therefore, sending Michelle means that the "IOC'ers" should judge the bids by their substance...not by all the bells, whistlers and hangers-on that will show up.

Of course, Michell will also have a surprise visitor in her entourage...someone from a small city in Rome. :lol:

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Michelle tends to bring humility and sincerity to her speeches and meetings, but I think the number one quality she would need is energy and enthusiasm, which she typically does not display because of her personality.

I was unsure Barack Obama could deliver, and I am even less sure that Michelle can. I think it is very unlikely at this point for Barack to show up, and it would probably only happen if his health care legislation was passed by October 1st (which looks to be unlikely at this point).

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Michelle tends to bring humility and sincerity to her speeches and meetings,

I haven't really paid much attention to Michelle's public speaking engagments thus far, but if there is that sincerity and humility, then maybe that is what the CHicago portion needs, especially in the light of bombastic and "me-first" speeches from the other 3.

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I think Oprah would have made a bigger impression, shes more influencial nd simply the richiest nd charismatic Media woman in the world. But no one can deliver a better speech than Carlos Nuzman, I was reading yesterday that Rio is at the top bc of him which is true. Let's hope he cries nd give rio the victory! :)

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I don't think sending a person who is not even really in the federal government sends the wrong message for Chicago 2016 when you have the head of State of the biggest Chicago 2016 bid threat Rio 2016 coming to Denmark. Michelle Obama is not a great speaker and does not sit at the cabinet table . Rahm Emanuel would send a more powerful message from the executive branch of the Us government then the first lady. It could be worse then Michelle Obama if they sent Joe Biden.

Obama again is being a skilled politician for domestic reasoning . His Presidency is more dependent on Health Care reform then Chicago winning the 2016 bid which has history stacked against it. How did Atlanta win the only summer games bid election for the USA ? Very poor choices from other places generally. Athens 1996 thinking the centennial addition was their birthright but forgot back to back on the same continent is highly unlikely since the age of TV started. Melbourne and Manchester Well what can one say . Australia found out for 2000 that you actually have to pay for flights to host in a place so expensive to get to. that was the general Handicap that Sydney 2000 Ided and started the practice of Bids including Air Flights for the Athletes on the LOC's Dime. Manchester and Belgrade Again he who does not know history is bound to repeat the mistakes. Two mid sized European Centres that just don't have the ring of prior European Host cities like Berlin , Munich . Moscow, London , Berlin , Rome or even Barcelona.

People Talk about the Bid Index and the 2012 race with Paris being ahead of London . I can't recall that Paris or London had their national olympic committee's in the background pulling stupid moves like an Olympic Specialty Network via a Cable provider. Neither Paris or London had opposition groups as I recall or a foot dragging of the mayor to sign a host city agreement.

Without Barrack Obama or a major Figure in his cabinet the IOC membership is looking at an attempt that is not taken seriously by the US. This is generally how the african IOC delegates will probably look on it as Pele vs a video of President Obama is what they viewed in Abuja for their annual meeting.

Jim jones

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Without Barrack Obama or a major Figure in his cabinet the IOC membership is looking at an attempt that is not taken seriously by the US. This is generally how the african IOC delegates will probably look on it as Pele vs a video of President Obama is what they viewed in Abuja for their annual meeting.

Jim jones

well then, is it more their self-importance or if they htought ahead a little, maybe give Cape Town 2020 a better chance? Is it ego vs. a greater goal down the line? This will be the test then of the maturity of the IOC African members.

I would also like to add that if it were a Michelle Obama-Hillary CLinton-Oprah Winfrey trio they were sending to Copenhagen, --is that they are ALL TRUE Chicagoans, even more than Barrack himself -- so I think she (Michelle) will present Chicago's case and speak from the heart. And the other thing to remember is that her husband got elected, DESPITE OF or IN SPITE of Michelle. She is also the ONLY world leader's wife whom QE2 has hugged, so the lady can probably exert some charm.

BTW, thorb -- if u r reading this, I never 'presented myself' as from a leading family of Chicago. You're the one dreaming up these things. Oh, and like Brazil is NOT a "developing country"? :rolleyes: Don't make me :lol: , silly fool.

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I understand Obama strategy. He said will send his wife but he will appear in the last minute in Copenhagen, so everyone will be talking about him and will vote for Chicago. They will think: Oh! Obama is here! Chicago project maybe good now.

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I've been thinking for a while, a Clinton is what's needed (I like Baron's Three Chicago-Babes option very much actually). But Bill I reckon could also be a definite plus - and he'd have more time to stay a few days to schmooze - something which even if Barack DID go, he wouldn't be able to spend enough time to do a la Blair.

Chicago's best, last hope: Bring Bubba off the bench

Posted by Ron Judd

CHICAGO -- The begging was getting embarrassing.

Please, oh please, oh please, Mr. President. Save us from ourselves.

For weeks, that plaintive wail has been emanating from Chi-town, as Olympic organizers, politicians and media wonks beg Barack Obama to do them one small solid: Please, Barry. Drop by Copenhagen before Oct. 2.

While you're there, would you mind picking up some pickled herring -- and a Summer Olympics?

Even a world champion figure skater chimed in Friday.

"We're hoping our president can get there and tip it in our favor," said Evan Lysacek, a Chicago-area native.

All they asked is that the prez summon some of that campaign-trail, vampire-glam-charm and transfix International Olympic Committe members, who insist upon having their collective ring kissed before bestowing an Olympic Games.

As it turns out, Chicago 2016 will get an Obama, but not the Obama they asked for. The bid committee announced Friday that First Lady Michelle Obama, not the president, would jet to Europe to do Chicago's bidding. They called her "uniquely qualified" for the job.

She'd better be. The Obama presence in Copenhagen has gone far beyond just a little boost to the bid. Chicago is calling it a necessity.

The obvious reason: The governments of every other candidate city in the hunt -- Tokyo, Madrid and Rio -- are sending their supreme leaders to genuflect before the IOC in Copenhagen.

After all: It worked for Britain's Tony Blair, whose frontal poodle-charm offensive might have snatched the 2012 Games for underdog London; and for Russia's Vladimir Putin, who may or may not have flashed his bare pecs to bedazzled IOC leaders to snatch the 2014 Games for Sochi, a place that doesn't even have a city hall.

The less-obvious reason: The U.S. Olympic Committee may have bollixed things up so badly for Chicago that it's now widely accepted that only an Obama boost can save the bid.

In a nutshell: The USOC, for years sailing along smoothly under the executive board leadership of now-retired Peter Ueberroth, hit the reef six months ago. In what now appears to be a palace coup, popular CEO Jim Scherr was dumped and replaced by Stephanie Streeter, a USOC board member who helped engineer his ouster -- and then inherited his substantial salary.

Streeter's green regime promptly ticked off the IOC by attempting to launch -- in spite of stern IOC warnings -- an Olympic television network that would have competed with the Olympic movement's Official Media Smooch Partner, NBC.

Strike one. Strike two.

Students of bid-city selection will note that the one thing the IOC doesn't like to see in a potential suitor is instability. Streeter et al will likely learn that the good old boys in Lausanne are not inclined to hand a multi-billion-dollar enterprise over to a klatch of newbies. And the one thing you don't do in the month lead up to the final vote is tweak the IOC over something as easily preventable as the TV network debacle.

Streeter and her apparent co-conspirator, Larry Probst, chairman of the USOC board, made it clear yesterday they still don't get that: They've flown to Switzerland and logged a bunch of phone calls in their six-month reign, they sniffed -- as if that's enough to replace a relationship built plank by plank, Games by Games, year by year.

Not that Chicago hasn't turned its guns on itself. Mayor Richard Daley's mixed messages and duplicitous dealings over the cost-overrun guarantee required by the IOC hasn't helped -- and may in fact have sealed this bid's fate, even though that financial assurance was finally made by the city this week.

So where does all that leave Chicago, which, for the record, has a solid, impressive bid that really should win? Desperate, by outward appearances.

Can the First Lady pull a Chicago Olympics out of the fire?

Not by herself. Knowing the way the IOC works, and seeing how badly the USOC, taking "amateur athletics" to the extreme, has tackled Chicago by the ankles at the finish line, not even the Obama touch is likely to save this baby.

That leaves only one final, desperate play: Bring Bubba off the bench.

We know it's a lot to ask. Bill Clinton has speech engagements. He has lunch appointments. The man has tee times, for God's sake.

But the big guy is 1-0 this season in save opportunities this season. Clinton dropped in on North Korea and left with rescued hostages -- the first time anyone has dropped in on North Korea and left with anything, except a lengthy hard-labor sentence.

Billy boy's plane is gassed up and waiting on the tarmac. He's got nowhere else to go. He speaks the good ol' boy language that resonates from Pyongyang to Fayetteville.

And let's be honest: Michelle may have star power, but Big Bill could talk a hungry wolf out of a warm elk carcass. Time to unleash old Twinkly Eyes for international rescue mission number two.

Clinton isn't just the best option for saving the 2016 Games for Chicago. At this point, he might be the only one.

Seattle Times

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If Michelle can give a moving and dynamic response to "Why Chicago?" and somehow assure the IOC that the US government is 100% behind the bid no matter what, then yes I think it will be enough.

Basically, if she wows the crowd and has them talking about her during the lunch break, she's done her job.

I agree whole heartedly with this. All she has to do is what Koolshundle said. All she has to do is wow them and make a really impressive presentation. The world seems to love Michelle almost as much as they do her husband so I too think her going should be enough.

Chicago is the one I'm rooting for personally, I live in the Chicago area and I think it would be neat to see them win their bid. One thing's for sure, Chicago will not get another chance at this for quite some time I think so it really is do or die as far as this Olympic bid goes.

I still have to back the bid on the Chicago 2016 website, and I also decided if Chicago wins I will sign up to be a volunteer because that would probably be a great experience.

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I don't think sending a person who is not even really in the federal government sends the wrong message for Chicago 2016 when you have the head of State of the biggest Chicago 2016 bid threat Rio 2016 coming to Denmark. Michelle Obama is not a great speaker and does not sit at the cabinet table . Rahm Emanuel would send a more powerful message from the executive branch of the Us government then the first lady. It could be worse then Michelle Obama if they sent Joe Biden.

Obama again is being a skilled politician for domestic reasoning . His Presidency is more dependent on Health Care reform then Chicago winning the 2016 bid which has history stacked against it. How did Atlanta win the only summer games bid election for the USA ? Very poor choices from other places generally. Athens 1996 thinking the centennial addition was their birthright but forgot back to back on the same continent is highly unlikely since the age of TV started. Melbourne and Manchester Well what can one say . Australia found out for 2000 that you actually have to pay for flights to host in a place so expensive to get to. that was the general Handicap that Sydney 2000 Ided and started the practice of Bids including Air Flights for the Athletes on the LOC's Dime. Manchester and Belgrade Again he who does not know history is bound to repeat the mistakes. Two mid sized European Centres that just don't have the ring of prior European Host cities like Berlin , Munich . Moscow, London , Berlin , Rome or even Barcelona.

People Talk about the Bid Index and the 2012 race with Paris being ahead of London . I can't recall that Paris or London had their national olympic committee's in the background pulling stupid moves like an Olympic Specialty Network via a Cable provider. Neither Paris or London had opposition groups as I recall or a foot dragging of the mayor to sign a host city agreement.

Without Barrack Obama or a major Figure in his cabinet the IOC membership is looking at an attempt that is not taken seriously by the US. This is generally how the african IOC delegates will probably look on it as Pele vs a video of President Obama is what they viewed in Abuja for their annual meeting.

Jim jones

What is exactly is "enough?"

Michelle Obama going to Copenhagen will be a definite boost for the bid even if she's not in the Cabinet. What could be more fitting to present someone who actually grew up in the same area where the Olympics will be than Michelle's personal history? Rahm may be good but he doesn't carry as much "celebrity status" as Michelle's. It's true that he's from Chicago but he's more influential in the behind the scenes work of the US Congress rather than the IOC Congress.

You claim that Paris or London neither had opposition groups. I didn't know they had 100% public support in 2005. Sure, No Games Chicago was loud--louder than any other opposition groups during this race, but where were they at the the community meetings? Nowhere! Actually, some of these opposition members were not even from Chicago or Chicago residents.

Foot dragging of the mayor? You're probably witnessing a democratic and responsible process. It's better to start asking questions now and strenthen our position financially, plan for a transparent and accountable process rather than waste time and ask the same questions after winning the bid. We know at least what we're getting into and not get blinded by the Olympic euphoria, because at the end of the day, it's us who will be paying for it, not you.

By the way, if Chicago or the US is not taking it seriously then what's the point for us to be paying for all this work and wasting our time?

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I'm going to try to stay optimistic.

Michelle going means that everything (airfare, secret service, accommodations) will be in place for the president to simply hop on the plane with her at the last minute. With most people thinking that the president will not attend, if he actually does show up, it will be a surprise which would steal the spotlight away from all the other cities. It could turn out to be a brilliant move.

Keeping an optimistic tone here - if the president doesn't show up. You still have to remember that when they went on their last trip to Europe, it was Michelle that was on all the headlines and front pages. She is a superstar, more so than the leaders of Japan, Spain, and Brazil.

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I think Oprah would have made a bigger impression, shes more influencial nd simply the richiest nd charismatic Media woman in the world. But no one can deliver a better speech than Carlos Nuzman, I was reading yesterday that Rio is at the top bc of him which is true. Let's hope he cries nd give rio the victory! :)

Yes Nuzman is incredible. I have the chance to meet him a few months ago and it was amazing. He is really appreciated by his IOC colleague and could deliver superb speeches.

Hope Lula will arrive in advance and they could do lobbying together...

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I've been thinking for a while, a Clinton is what's needed (I like Baron's Three Chicago-Babes option very much actually). But Bill I reckon could also be a definite plus - and he'd have more time to stay a few days to schmooze - something which even if Barack DID go, he wouldn't be able to spend enough time to do a la Blair.

Like I said earlier in this thread, if Obama himself doesn't go, then they need to send another prominent figure along with Michelle; Hillary, Bill or Al, people that are or have been very BIG in the U.S. politics scene. And sending, arguably, the Best former Democratic President the United States has ever had, can be the next best thing at this point if it ain't Barrack himself. And like the Seattle Times article you posted here, explains it very well.

If they other candidates weren't sending anyone, this wouldn't be an issue. But like in many other articles that are out there explain, in the last 2 Olympic races, it has almost become almost like a "requirement" to have your Heads of State at the IOC seesions.

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The only way Obama could get Bill to go would be to say that by having the Olympics in 2016 it would be good for the democratic nominee in the 2016 election. He would also say that his endorsement would go to Hill. I find it unlikely that Obama would ever say such a thing, and I highly doubt Bill would go to Copenhagen (he didn't go for NY in 2005, why would he go for Chicago).

Hillary would not go, as she is a stateswoman now, and does not invest time with "interests"

Al Gore may be the only other political figure that could help in my opinion, but again it would seem odd for him to be involved, unless he goes to Copenhagen for "preparation work" since the city will be hosting the UN Environmental Summit in December.

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