Uncategorized | 11:00 am | January 7, 2008 | By Thomas Kaplan

On “change”, Clinton fights back – and, by the numbers, wins

HAMPTON, N.H., 11 a.m. — Fighting for her political life, Senator Hillary Clinton LAW ’73 is on the attack against Barack Obama on the issue of “change.”

On Sunday, Clinton rolled out a new, aggressive stump speech, talking up the “difference between talk and action, between rhetoric and reality.” At a rally here Sunday night, she wasted no time driving the point home: in four minutes, she used the word “change” no fewer than 15 times.

Clinton never mentioned Obama by name, but her message was aimed squarely at him, and that much was lost on no one in attendance.

“In order to bring about the changes that are so essential for America’s future, you’ve got to have an understanding of the difference between hope for change and demanding change,” she told supporters.

The highlight of her speech was a new refrain — “That’s not change!” — that she shouted after highlighting a time when Obama did not push for change, like voting for the Patriot Act, voting to fund the war in Iraq, or giving top campaign posts to lobbyists.

Yet she never mentioned him by name. Still, the message was loud and clear. Signs reading “Ready for Change” were everywhere.

“If we’re going to be talking about change, then let’s talk about change,” Clinton said. “Let’s talk about who’s produced change, and let’s talk about who’s more likely to bring about change.”

If nothing else, she beat Obama on using the word “change” more often. In the beginning of her speech, she was averaging one “change” every 11 seconds.

— Thomas Kaplan

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