June 20th, 2008
07:47 PM ET
7 years ago

When the Obama logo and presidential seal collide


The Obama campaign debuted a new logo Friday that bears a striking resemblance to the presidential seal. Photo credit: AP, White House.

CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) – Presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama sat down in Chicago Friday morning to discuss the economy with visiting Democratic governors, but all eyes were on the Illinois senator’s podium bearing, what might be described as, a quasi-presidential seal – a new Obama campaign logo.

The seal includes the same bald eagle as the actual presidential seal clutching an olive branch and arrows in its talons, but instead of a shield covering the center of the eagle’s body, the Obama version displays the campaign’s trademark “O.” Unlike the Presidential seal, which includes the words “Seal of the President of the United States” around the circumference, “Obama for America” and “www.barackobama.com” grace the top and bottom of Obama's.

Finally, just above the eagle, in Latin, are the words – “vero possumus” – which translates to “yes we can,” the oft-heard chant at Obama rallies.

It remains to be seen how the new seal will play in the campaign’s quest to win over working-class voters.

What do you think of the logo? Your comments below.

soundoff (522 Responses)
  1. Hello!!!

    Also, very UNcreative. There is plagarism in art. Can't he afford his own graphics department? Or does he like to copy logos the way he copies speeches and policy ideas?????
    Like Hill said, change you can xerox....

    June 20, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  2. Cameron

    Don't really like it, to be honest. I'm a Barack supporter through and through, but this is just tacky and not that interesting. The standard "O" logo is much more appealing visually.

    The controversy, however, is artificial and forced. Anti-Obama people should drop it, it just makes them look petty and willing to rip the man apart for every little thing. Why is the focus on this and not the event/speech itself?

    June 20, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  3. Belle

    Well....let's flip on NAFTA, let's flop on Campaign Finance Bills he helped to sponsor and supposedly believed in...now let's disgrace the entire country by making "light" of the Presidential Seal of the United States.

    Yup...change you can believe in...right?

    Arrogant does not begin to describe the Senator from IL.

    Hillary, don't you dare accept a VP position from this man.

    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  4. RRE

    ..very creative...Obama's campaign people should go work at Kinko's they are copy cats...no original thoughts.


    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  5. Sherrie in Sacramento

    I am an Obama fan and think it is a bit presumptuous and overly clever. On the other hand, opponents will always see his confidence as arrogance whether it is or not, which the above comments show.

    My high school Latin suggests that the Latin word vero has something to do with truth, so my first sense of it was "with truth things are possible," but my Latin isn't necessarily correct.

    The two campaigns remind me of Jay Ogilvy's phrase "paradigm war." I really thing the campaign is a competition of paradigms, and the conventional paradigm folks don't have a clue what the transformational paradigm folks are about. This will probably always be so.

    The SRI study of "cultural creatives" foreshadowed the growth of a new way of looking at things, which seems to have reached majority by now. The election will probably demonstrate that with an Obama win.

    Whoever coined "Obamanation" is very clever. You get a couple of points for that one.

    Who is Palin in McCain/Palin? Did he name a running mate? I must be sleeping.

    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  6. Arcie H.

    Obama really should't jump the gun on "seal lust' as there are quite a group of us who haven't been consulted yet on who should be the next president! And a lot of us haven't been blinded by lawyer "beautiful language " meant to sway the easily swayed !!!

    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  7. John E Lexington KY

    It looks presumptuous, as if he thinks he's won already. McCain will have a field day with it. I suggest junking it and now. Obama's downfall may be hubris, and his staff seems to think he's god too. I'd have Michelle take an ax to it on camera.

    All that stuff about Hillary feeling entitled is going to backfire if this continues.

    I keep seeing connections to Nixon, and this is like when Nixon had a White House guard created that looked like the Buckingham Palace guards. But Nixon was at least president when he did it.

    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  8. Mary

    I think he should tatoo it to his forehead. It's just disgusting! He certainly is an arrogant SOB.

    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  9. Mimi De La Cruz for OBAMA



    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  10. Betty Fry

    I think Obama's choice of Seal is inappropriate for United States of America's President. He may become our President in 2008 and he won't be the first nor the last President of the United States of America.

    I think many people living in United States of America today still wish and has changed our American Culture.

    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  11. jwrig22

    I love it.
    In latin, 'vero possumus' literally translates, "In truth, we are able."

    OBAMA '08

    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  12. AdamW

    Wow. You people are funny.
    It's a logo.

    Nothing arrogant or presumptive about it. And what is this nonsense about respecting the presidential seal? How is it disrespectful?

    If anything I would be upset as an artist that it isn't that original of the designer but that is about it. Nothing to get your panties in a bunch over.

    Obama is branding and unfortunately in this consumer based culture of ours one has to brand.

    This country needs a whole new logo, flag, slogan, make-over. We are the most arrogant nation in the world and then you have the nerve to say this man is arrogant.

    How arrogant is it to think your views or ideas should be the worlds views and ideas? America goes around pushing our culture on others and then we get upset when native people don't want us in their country. We push democracy, capitalism and the whole nine and call ourselves the leaders of the free world.

    That is arrogance.

    Elitist? We drive around in SUVs and waste gas like nobody's business while young soldiers die for oil, we act like we are too good to work in the orange groves while immigrants slave, our doctor's and insurance companies live like fat cats while people around the globe die from AIDS.

    We must think we are really important, America.

    Stop whining about a logo. The man is branding himself, he didn't even design it. Mist likely didn't even approve it. But maybe he did. So what?

    How about you armchair revolutionary/commentators/political activist wannabes actually go out and try and make a difference in the world like Obama is trying to. You don't have to follow his message, make your own. But do something to make the world a better place instead of useless complaining about a logo. Geez.

    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  13. Nick

    It's not creative, or beautiful. It is disgraceful and arrogant. This guy constantly makes it harder and harder to vote for him. The office of the presidency is supposed to seek you Barack, not the other way around.

    June 20, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  14. lisa

    The eagle on Obama's seal looks more like a dragon. Where have I seen this before. Hmmm, maybe the Book of Revelations 13:1..please read.

    And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy (.(The Antichrist and the Confederation of 10 states he leads is represented as a beast rising out of the sea– the sea of politics)..and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.

    June 20, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  15. DJ, LA, CA

    I like it! Shades of Franklin D. Roosevelt. Time for another New Deal to rebuild the country after 27 years of Bush and Clinton family rule in the White House.

    June 20, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  16. Linda Springer


    Mr. BO take off your tie and go serve in the heat and dirt with the rest of our troops.

    America be careful what you wish for.

    June 20, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  17. Bill Sung

    Great smart logo; I like it.

    June 20, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  18. Nobama

    Arrogant ... just like the rest of his campaign staff and supporters!

    McCain '08
    Hillary '12

    June 20, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  19. John

    BLING BLING. I can't wait for the gold chain style emblem. It's shiny.

    June 20, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  20. Bob

    Well, when your not proud to be an American and most likely are not one these symbols of American Tradition mean nothing to you. I can see him changing the stars on the flag and putting one big one on there.

    Follow my little sheep OBAHMAAAAAAAAAA OBAHMAAAAAAAAAA wow the same out casts from high school are getting revenge. It appears its time to start looking for my tax loop holes again.....The last 8 years have been good

    June 20, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  21. anonymous


    June 20, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  22. Nancie Gordon

    Very clever! Good move!

    June 20, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  23. Dale

    Repent for the kingdom of Heaven is at hand !

    June 20, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  24. Gary Chandler in Canada

    -about 45 posts above saying it is a sign of bold confidence and goal setting with positive imagery
    -about 35 saying it shows bold arrogance as if it is too early to be a pretender to the throne
    - is it just me, or is this campaign dull compared to the Obama Clinton battle? It's like the the two best teams played in the semi finals.
    (It's an okay emblem with positive goal setting, a little bit too big, 'not green' 46 to 35)

    June 20, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  25. Anonymous

    un-patriotic and un-american

    June 20, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
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