November 11th, 2007
07:26 AM ET
15 years ago

Obama goes for Michael Jordan allusion in Iowa

Sen. Barack Obama invoked his hometown Chicago Bulls on Saturday night.

(CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama took a page from his hometown playbook Saturday night before his speech at the annual Jefferson-Jackson Dinner in Iowa, coming on stage to the famous starting lineup music used by the Chicago Bulls.

For most sports fans, the music instantly calls to mind Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen and the dominant Bulls teams that won six NBA titles in the 1990s.

Obama was even introduced by the voice of Ray Clay, the former Bulls announcer who riled up the crowd at Bulls home games during the team's heyday.

During his playing days, Jordan's intro went like this: "From North Carolina, at guard, six-foot-six ... Michael Jordan!"

In this case, Clay tweaked the intro for Obama: "From our neighboring state of Illinois, a six-foot, two-inch force for change ... senator Barack Obama!"

For the record, the actual intro music is a sample from the song "Sirius," by the Alan Parsons Project.

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Iowa • Race to '08
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. Chima, York, PA

    CNN....what is the matter with you? Obama had the most powerful speech last night among the candidates, and THIS is what you focus on? The Michael Jordan opening???? Why did you not mention anything about the actual speech? Why no details on how Obama pointedly showed why HE would be the best candidate? Why is there nothing about the Obama supporters being the loudest in the auditorium? Why nothing about Obama getting the loudest cheers? Why nothing about the importance of the JJ dinner and how a great night at the dinner has historically influenced the caucuses?
    CNN...all you came up with was the MJ opening???
    Pathetic. Meanwhile you gave Hillary a nice article on HER speech.


    November 11, 2007 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  2. MezinaT, ATL, GA

    Looks like you did not have reporters on the ground. Here is the beef on Obama and the other candidates

    November 11, 2007 10:02 am at 10:02 am |

    Finally a Barack Obama plug!

    But didn't you grow up in Honolulu(1961-1967), and Jakarta(1967-1971), then back to Honolulu(1971-1979), then Los Angeles(1979-1981)before going to Columbia(1981-1983) in NYC and then Harvard(1988-1991) in Mass.? at which point did Chicago become your HOME TOWN?

    Granted, I'm just a middle-class guy myself, and I really do admire YOUR educational pedigree, but please don't tell us that you are MIDDLE-CLASS anymore, because if you do, I won't vote for you again in a primary, nor in any general election.

    AND before all the other critics of my comments respond, I really do think he is the number one leader or the pack in the Democratic Party, but I don't see him YET with the Experience, Confidence, nor Street-Smarts needed to bang out against people like Putin, Ahmadinejad, Hu Jintao, or even Hillary or Rudy.

    But don't give up barry, hang tough! The Dream Endures!

    November 11, 2007 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  4. Rose Hillrose, Chicago, IL

    Compare the relevance of this story to Clinton's headliner. Is this all Obsama can deliver?.

    November 11, 2007 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  5. mel, NC

    all the substance from the JJ Dinner = an entry about Senator Obama's intro music.

    it doesn't make sense to me...

    November 11, 2007 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  6. Jack, Greenville, SC

    Please, please, please, please...
    CNN, I like you guys, but this is getting really ridiculous. You give a nice article to Hillary's speech and focus on Obama's music. I know, from previous post by myself and others, that you do not seem to be influenced by responses like this, but please at least strive for parity.

    November 11, 2007 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  7. Juanito, Washington, DC

    Watch the speech yourself and then decide.

    November 11, 2007 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  8. Dan, Saint Louis, MO

    The audacity of this guy. He compares himself to Abraham Lincoln and now Michael Jordan? Sorry Barack, the difference is that those two are American heroes because of their accomplishments. You on the other hand have never done anything. You talk like a bipartisan leader with your canned empty rhetoric, then you vote as the most liberal, extremist candidate in the race. This man is not uniter, he has no experience, no bills passed in the Senate, and he is riding wave of glowing treatment by the media, as the recent independent study pointed out. Open up your eyes you fools. This guy is a sham.

    November 11, 2007 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  9. Kenneth, Atlanta Georgia

    It is very obvious that CNN is partial with its reporting of the on going political events. Last night I saw an Obama who is ready to lead our great country to the promise land and all CNN could report about him was his entry intro, what a shame.

    Americans do not need a president who plants questions or who double talk on every important issues.

    It is very important for journalist to be very impartial and clear with their reporting, so as not to mislead the America people.

    Americans are about to make a great decision,God bless us to make the right one

    November 11, 2007 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  10. John Adkisson, Sacramento, California

    I have always snickered at complaints of media bias, because I know from experience that mainstream media bias is not based on left vs. right politics.

    CNN's selection of stories from the JJ Dinner, which I watched from beginning to end last night, reinforces to me that media bias is based on each reporter's desire to find the smallest personal observation from an event and turn that "angle" into "the story."

    Unfortunately, by failing to report what everyone in the hall knew - that Obama electrified this event and moved Iowa momentum his way - people reading this blog are not informed of what happened.

    Instead we hear of a new slogan by Senator Clinton –"turn up the heat" –which was delivered poorly to an unreceptive audience - and a reference to a Michael Jordan boombox introduction for Obama.

    Anyone getting their news from this blog is misinformed about this signal political event. This was important - and it was trivialized and missed.

    Don't take this personally, CNN. As a former journalist, I know this is the sad state of all the news outlets these days.

    I only hope Iowa was listening to the actual event.

    November 11, 2007 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  11. Maria, Houston

    WOW, CNN,
    is this ALL you have to say about this important event? Check NBC,ABC and other major news sources for analysis of the Iowa JJ Dinner.

    It must be hard to admit that Barack Obama was shining and he came across clearly is the best nominee of the Democratic party. The audience was wildly supportive of him and CNN can't manage to come up with a half decent commentary? Just give the credit when its due...

    November 11, 2007 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  12. Maria, Houston

    Rose Hillrose,

    his name is OBAMA not Obsama. Why are you humiliating yourself by playing stupid?

    November 11, 2007 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  13. Reggie, Hamburg Germany

    John Atkinson, Sacramento.

    Thank you so much for your comment and also those of all the other who responded in kind. I am an ex pat living in germany and not having access to the wealth of information at your disposal am looking to CNN to provide me with the information I need to make an informed decision. In this regard I have been completely disappointed in what the so called "Leading 'NEWS' Source for the World" has been providing.

    Side bar gossip and trival bla bla is not what I. other ex pats or indeed the american people want, desire, require or deserve!!

    Had it not been for your response, like the others, I would not have even known what was really occurring in Iowa that evening; never mind it's significance.

    I would think something of this magnitude would demand a full blown article with analyisis from the so called "Best Political Team on Television"! What we got was a Micheal Jordan intro, how sad.

    John you are a journalist tell me where you write your articles and I will be a faithful reader.

    Obviously CNN has decided to change their line of business to the creation of surgar coated bon bons.

    November 11, 2007 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  14. Ken, TX

    The article tells the truth. Obama counts on impressing the public by entering the stage like a Hollywood star and preaching his politics of hope that has no connection with reality. His campaign is orchestrated to take your eyes without offering much substance.

    In 2000 and 2004 Bush was also the "I like him" guy compared to Gore or Kerry who seemed too rigid. So many Americans voted based on candidate likeability. Wake up, this is not just a play with nice and mean characters, with lights and music, this is about future.

    November 11, 2007 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  15. Dan, Saint Louis, MO

    If you're gonna talk about his name, get it right:

    Barack HUSSEIN Obama

    PS- He's a product of Muslim schooling.

    November 11, 2007 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  16. Michael, Houston TX

    uh, sorry sports fans – your man wanted to be associated with sports greats like Jordan, and now you cry "Bad media! you focused on the flash and not the substance of our man!"

    Tough bananas, Obama took a risk in having the focus turn to the flash, it did, such is politics.

    Here is a quarter call someone who cares...

    Hillary needs to win this, not Barrack, I would say he could be president, just not this time around, he needs more experience, and we need someone with more experience to lead us like Hillary to clean up the mess we have now.

    November 11, 2007 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  17. mbot565, San Diego, CA

    Well, well, well, if it's not CNN: Clinton News Network. Man, your love for Hillary or Bill is SOOO obvious, you can't even hide it.
    Of course, keep believing she's the winner. Keep saying that she's so inevitable no one can catch her. She's so inevitable she can't even get enough supporters to come to support her at JJ dinner. Keep underestimating other candidates, we've been through this road before CNN. We see right through you.

    November 11, 2007 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  18. Leo, VA

    "Watch the speech yourself and then decide."
    Posted By Juanito, Washington, DC

    Yes, this was a well delivered speech, but full of demagogic promises.

    November 11, 2007 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  19. LQ, Rochester MN

    Dan from St Louis MO – PUHLEEEEEEEEZE!!
    Who cares if his name is Barack HUSSEIN Obama!! As far as I know, he is a Christian, but then again, WHO CARES!! I don't. What matters to me is can he clean up this mess that Bush/Cheney made of my country.

    November 11, 2007 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |

    place your hand over your heart and where the flag! COMMANDER IN CHIEF MY %%%. NO ACTIONS AND YOU TALK TO MUCH. WHAT HAVE YOU DONE BUSTER!

    November 11, 2007 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  21. Ron Nebraska

    I'll take Obamas character and religious beliefs over George Bushs' brand of christianity any day.

    November 11, 2007 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  22. Kyu Reisch, Radcliff, Kentucky

    LQ, Rochester, do you care about Obama's hypocritical behaviors?
    He can not clean up Bush/Cheney's mess, because his political morality is in a mess.(refer to Meet the Press, today)

    November 11, 2007 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  23. Seam, Philly PA

    Hey Dan, Saint Louis, MO: what a wild accusation you made. Barack has never made such comparisons. Dude, you are out of touch with facts. You must believe everything you read.

    November 12, 2007 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  24. Seam, Philly PA

    Hey PATRIOT,LA., you need some writing lessons. Your grammar and spelling are terrible.

    November 12, 2007 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  25. DH , Lake Barrington , IL

    LOL ! In Illinois, all we've seen is a lot of nothing from Obama. Last week, property tax bills arrived and most of us are looking at 40 per cent increases. That's not Obama's personal doing, but it's typical of the tax-and-spend Democratic system here in Ill.

    Obama didn't do anything, and isn't doing anything now as "Senator" for Ill., how can he possibly be so big-headed to think he's ready for the Presidency?

    November 12, 2007 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
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