August 20th, 2008
09:50 AM ET
10 years ago

The subtle art of campaign humor

Burton’s Wednesday e-mail to reporters.

Burton’s Wednesday e-mail to reporters.

(CNN) - Pity the poor Obama beat reporter – sleeping with their blackberry within arm's reach and their cell phone tucked under their pillow awaiting the looming vice presidential announcement, their job description expanded to include Talmudic-style dissections of vacation itineraries, campaign logistics and grammatical slips.

Having trouble working up any sympathy? So is Barack Obama's campaign. Wednesday morning, as VP speculation reached fever pitch, national spokesman Bill Burton sent reporters an e-mail titled “Vice Presidential….”

First line of the message: “Just kidding.”

It'll probably be a lot funnier after the convention.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (104 Responses)
  1. Mike - Texas

    I can just imagine how ticked some of those guys were.

    Ha Ha Ha

    August 20, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  2. Charlotte


    August 20, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  3. ran

    If anyone votes for Mcain or any republicans this time it will not be funny it will be a tradgedy.

    OBAMA and DEMOCRATS this time.

    August 20, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  4. Laura

    I thought Obama's camp didn't like humor. At least, they sure don't appreciate McCain's. Academics, thoughtfulness, and a who lot of "uhs" are what they are into.

    August 20, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  5. Praetorian, Fort Myers

    Looking at the two dumbos we are left to choose–you gotta laugh or cry.

    Most of us prefer to laugh.

    August 20, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  6. Sacto Joe

    Now, THAT'S funny!

    August 20, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  7. Ryan, New York, NY

    It is funny. It's been fairly ridiculous how extensive the coverage of who these two candidates are going to select has been.

    If only the MSM spent more time on what these people actually want to do with the country rather than who they want to do it with, I'd be a lot more pleased. Instead all that we have is analysis of who would best help him with state X because so and so is from that state, etc.

    August 20, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  8. Jean


    Is he arrogant because he looks confident, holds his head up, smiles, is smart etc.??

    August 20, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  9. Please Love Me and Post My Stuff

    Humor is good, but not in this case. Presidential Campaigns and VP picks affect the whole country if not the world. It is not a joke. Grow up boys!

    August 20, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  10. Turnabout is Fair Play

    Almost swallowed my tongue along with my heart when I got that email, ROFL!!

    Jan/Michigan August 20th, 2008 10:22 am ET

    Obama IS a joke!
    Don't start that crap bitter old tired woman..go 'way and leave us lone. If Obama is a joke to you and he still be Hillary, what does that say about Hillary?

    August 20, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  11. Joi

    This is quite funny. I slept with my blackberry too and I kept checking it all last night to make sure it was working. When I woke this morning, I was still tired because I had not slept from checking my blackberry all night! Hilarious 🙂

    August 20, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  12. JD


    August 20, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  13. Lynn

    And he wants to be President! His arrogance just keeps on going!!!!!!!!!

    August 20, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  14. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    ha, ha. Almost as funny as the candidate Howard Dean picked.

    August 20, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  15. John in Ohio

    McCain reminds me of another “overwhelmingly-experienced” politician that’s unable to overtake an “amateur.”

    If Clinton couldn't beat Obama, McCain sure isn't going to do it. America needs a president who actually sounds smart in front of a microphone.

    August 20, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  16. keesa

    voteing for mccain is like taking a gun in turning it on yourself,this man is crazy after russia invaded georgians mccain came out like america is the big bad wolf. this man judgement is a sham how we is gonna fight three wars at one time, quick to act but not thinking what he is doing. an about the surge i think the iraq`s are being paid not to attack us to make like we are winning. mccain talking about he put country first no iraq`s first helping them rebuild their country but not america. i think mccain is out for himself the republican party is playing a game on who can win a war first that`s why he always say`s im gonna win, crazy old coop.

    August 20, 2008 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  17. sherry for Obama

    Too funny..........

    August 20, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  18. Michael Hussein from MA

    Funny...lighten up people – Seriously, still thinking of changing my middle name to Hussein

    August 20, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  19. Dwayne - L, OH

    When he does send and email to let the reporters and supporters know who his choice for VP is, He should text a message before hand saying "republicans...get your shovels ready."

    August 20, 2008 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  20. Charles

    Very funny. That is actual humor, not comparing somebody to Paris Hilton and such. Though I am sure the media guys are not laughing quite as hard!!

    August 20, 2008 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  21. Erika, KS

    Really, Obama doesn't even have a sense of humor. His ego is too big. No room in there for humor. Every time he says something that he construes as funny, he comes off as talking down and condescending.

    And no, people should not "lighten up." This is serious business and we're in a world of mess. I don't want these politicians to be funny. There's no time for that. I want them to discuss issues. But all I hear is them badmouth their opponent. Enough of that crap. There's no time for that either.

    August 20, 2008 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  22. Brian G, Sugar Land, TX

    That's cute. Low level non-offensive humor targeted at an information hungry group of journalists.

    In fact, I think it is hysterical! Gotta, paparazzi! Ha, ha, ha, ha.

    August 20, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  23. Susan

    Why not have a little fun..McCain is souring the campaign so much that evryone need a chuckle!

    August 20, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  24. Garth

    So many PUMA's out today. Did your Republican handlers give you orders to flood the blogs with witty comments like Robert and Jan/Michigan?

    McCain represents the old way of politics as started with Clinton and well developed by Chaney (Bush is just a figurehead). We need a big change and Obama is the only hope. Nader and Barr want a socialist form of government and are so wierd it doesn't matter.

    Think Americans, don't just accept what some gasbag on the radio tells you to think. We are becoming a nation of sheep. Self absorbed sheep that only pretend to think about anything but themselves.

    August 20, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  25. Walker, TX

    Obama's VP will be . . .


    August 20, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
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