[Barack Obama announces candidacy for president]

Senator Barack Obama announces his candidacy for president of the United States from the steps of the Old Capitol Building in Springfield, IL, where Abraham Lincoln had delivered his "House Divided" speech.

00:07Copy video clip URL Open to a crowd gathered at the steps of the Old Capital Building in Springfield, IL. Camera crews wait in position as music blasts over loudspeakers.

00:028Copy video clip URL An announcer welcomes senior Illinois Senator Dick Durbin. The crowd erupts in cheers. Durbin takes the podium, preparing comparing Barack Obama’s journey to Washington D.C. with Abraham Lincoln.

03:52Copy video clip URL Durbin welcomes Obama to the stage. Obama paces through the crowd, waving and shaking hands.

05:55Copy video clip URL Obama takes the hand of his daughter Malia and walks with her to the stage’s podium, accompanied by Michelle Obama and their second daughter Sasha.

06:48Copy video clip URL Obama begins his announcement speech. In the background, the crowd can be heard chanting “Obama” repeatedly. Obama rouses the audience, giving his vision for America in broad strokes and recalling his humble origins as a community organizer in the South Side of Chicago and work as a constitutional lawyer. He then traces this story to his election as a senator of Illinois, listing the accomplishments achieved during his tenure.

12:10Copy video clip URL Obama continues, “It was here in Springfield where North, South, East, and West come together, that I was reminded of the essential decency of the American people. Where I came to believe that through this decency, we can build a more hopeful America. That is why, in the shadow of the Old State Capitol, where Lincoln once called on a house divided to stand together, where common hopes and common dreams still live, I stand before you today to announce my candidacy for President of the United States.” Obama struggles to continue speaking amid chants from the crowd. He continues by addressing the need for the government to enact change and the American people to answer a generational call.

15:08Copy video clip URL The speech continues, drawing on the story and example of Abraham Lincoln as it connects with current political needs. Obama lists the challenges of America’s ongoing wars in the Middle East, dependence on oil, disinvestment in education, and the plight of working class families. “What’s stopped us from meeting these challenges is not the absence of sound policies, sensible plans” says Obama. “What’s stopped us is failure of leadership.” Without naming specific people or parties, Obama denounces the many political failures under former president George W. Bush, as well as special interests and lobbyists in Washington D.C. He says, “They think they own this government. But we’re here today to take it back. The time for this kind of politics is over.”

18:38Copy video clip URL Obama next highlights a lofty vision of American progress and outlining the major policy platforms of his future presidency. These include transforming the economy, improving schools, making higher education more affordable, increasing wages, strengthening unions, ending poverty, and tackling global warming. He also addresses the need for overhauling the healthcare system in the United States, saying, “Let’s be the generation that says, ‘Right here, right now, we will have universal healthcare in America by the end of the next president’s first term.'” He then calls for an end to the war in Iraq while also arguing for increased investment in national defense. Obama claims to have a plan to bring home American troops from Iraq by March 2008.

24:20Copy video clip URL Moving to conclude his speech, Obama tries to counter popular sentiment of skepticism and disillusionment toward politicians who make grand speeches filled with empty promises, only to have the government controlled by special interest groups and lobbyists. He gives a final call to action for support, stressing the possibility for change, transformation, and unity.

27:34Copy video clip URL Obama’s speech ends. He waves to the crowd from the stage and is joined by Michelle Obama. They walk offstage, shaking hands, swarmed by the media.

30:10Copy video clip URL A reporter appears in front of the camera.

30:19Copy video clip URL Obama waves to the crowd from the steps of the Old Capital Building with his two daughters.

31:10Copy video clip URL Cut to footage of a news conference.

 

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