Can the favourite balance the pressures and silence the critics?
At 10.15 ET, 3.15pm in the UK, Barack Obama will rise to make what could be the speech that determines whether he gets the nomination or not. The title “Race, Politics, and Unifying our Country” says it all and all eyes will be on Philadelphia where the event is taking place.
This is how the excellent Politico site is setting the scene: “..He is now facing a full-blown and fast-moving political crisis in which his reputation as a leader with a singular ability to transcend racial divisions and unite Americans is in jeopardy.A convergence of factors â€” a media firestorm, a Democratic rival eager to exploit his stumbles and, most of all, a Republican opposition eager to rough up the man they expect to face in the general election â€” have raised the stakes to new heights for Obama with the speech he will deliver..
A successful address would go a long way toward answering Hillary Rodham Clintonâ€™s complaint that Obama has never shown he can handle the rough-and-tumble nature of modern political combat.
A failure could leave many of the white independent voters â€” a key group behind Obamaâ€™s swift rise in national politics â€” doubting whether he is really the bridge-builder and healer he has portrayed himself to be.”
In the nomination betting Clinton price has tightened a touch and Obama’s has moved out a notch since this blew in the media last week.