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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Harry Reid Claims Credit for Obama

Lisa Mascaro writes in the Las Vegas Sun:
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid encouraged Barack Obama to run for president in early 2007, telling the then-freshman senator if wanted the White House, he could win it, according to an epilogue to Reid’s autobiography to be released next month. Reid’s advice came unsolicited, the majority leader told the Las Vegas Sun in an interview.Reid said he invited Obama to his office off the Senate floor ostensibly to discuss other matters. But actually the majority leader brought the young senator in to tell him, as Reid writes in the book, “If you want to be president, you can be president now.”Reid recalled Obama as uncertain, even doubtful of his presidential prospects, according to the epilogue in“The Good Fight: Hard Lessons from Searchlight to Washington.”
Reid seems to be claiming credit for Barack Obama's decision to run. If so, he's stretching things. Speculation about an Obama candidacy was widespread by late 2006. On November 30, Lynn Sweet of the Chicago Sun Times wrote: "I think Sen. Barack Obama, who is seriously considering a run for president, is going to jump into the 2008 race. I predict the freshman Illinois Democrat will announce near the end of this year or the beginning of 2007, sometime after he returns from a holiday break in his native Hawaii." That's what happened. On January 16, he announced his exploratory committee on YouTube: