CONCORD, NH–New Hampshire Republican Party Chairman Fergus Cullen issued the following statement today on Barack Obama’s speech tonight in Denver:
“It appears the only thing larger than the hype surrounding Barack Obama’s speech tonight is Obama’s own ego. The choice to construct a columned stage for him resembling a miniature Greek temple shows that he has an almost messianic mentality that he really is the chosen one.”
“Maybe the thin air is getting to the Obama campaign, but trying to turn Invesco Field into Mount Olympus is simply laughable. While Granite Staters have seen John McCain flying into Manchester countless times on coach class and carrying his own luggage, Obama’s mile high ego and his utterly pretentious “Barackropolis” shows a contrast between the two that could not be clearer.”
Obama Speech Stage Resembles Ancient Greek Temple
August 26, 2008
Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's big speech on Thursday night will be delivered from an elaborate columned stage resembling a miniature Greek temple.
The stage, similar to structures used for rock concerts, has been setup at the 50-yard-line, the midpoint of Invesco Field, the stadium where the Denver Broncos' National Football League team plays.
Some 80,000 supporters will see Obama appear from between plywood columns painted off-white, reminiscent of Washington's Capitol building or even the White House, to accept the party's nomination for president.
He will stride out to a raised platform to a podium that can be raised from beneath the floor.
The show should provide a striking image for the millions of Americans watching on television as Obama delivers a speech accepting the Democratic presidential nomination.
Politicians in past elections have typically spoken from the convention site itself, but the Obama campaign liked the idea of having their man speak to a larger, stadium-sized crowd not far from where the Democratic National Convention is being held, at the Denver pro basketball arena.
Obama was taking a page from the campaign book of John Kennedy in 1960when the future president delivered his acceptance speech to 80,000 people in the Los Angeles Coliseum.
Once Obama speaks, confetti will rain down on him and fireworks will be fired off from locations around the stadium wall.
Democratic convention organizers said the theme for the evening is “Change We Can Believe In,” which has been a consistent message of Obama’s presidential campaign.
Oscar-winning actress and singer Jennifer Hudson will sing the national anthem that night.
(Reporting by Steve Holland; editing by David Wiessler)
TEMPLE OF DEM ON MT. O-LYMPUS
By JEREMY OLSHAN and GEOFF EARLE, Post Correspondents
NY Post August 28, 2008
DENVER - Democrats will kneel before the "Temple of Obama" tonight.
As if a Rocky Mountain coronation were not lofty enough,
“It’s only appropriate that
“We would have expected to read something like this in The Onion. Fortunately for us, it’s true. Unfortunately for Obama, it's true,” a McCain adviser told The Post.
But the set is designed to evoke the White House and the Lincoln Memorial, not the Acropolis, said staging supervisor Bobby Allen, a Spears set vet.
“We've done Britney’s sets and a whole bunch of rock shows, but this was far more elaborate and complicated and we had to do it in far less time,” said Allen, of RDA Entertainment.
“The biggest challenge has been making sure we don’t damage the playing field underneath.”
Asked who is harder to satisfy – the Democrats or Britney - Allen replied: “I better not answer that.”
The curved, columned backdrop does resemble the portico of the White House, and blue carpeting and podium surrounded by white stars is suggestive of the Oval Office, other crew members said.
Democrats quickly pointed out that George W. Bush accepted the Republican nomination before a similar, though less elaborate, stage in 2004.
Obama chose to accept the nomination at Invesco Field and not at the Pepsi Center, where the rest of the convention is being held, so he can reach out to a larger number of supporters - a move John F. Kennedy employed in 1960.
The late decision to move the speech to the football stadium did not give Allen and the other contractors much time to make the Olympian stage a reality.
“We knew about it for only a few weeks, and had only one week to actually assemble this,” he said.
The structure has an aluminum frame, and the faux-stone walls and columns are made of wood.
Obama has been called ‘the biggest celebrity in the world’ by the McCain campaign.
Republicans say that even though Obama will share the stage with Stevie Wonder, the candidate is proving their point.