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Obama Rally Explains Bird’s Passion

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – As mentioned in the previous entry during this trip to Philly, Jeremy Bird ’00 puts in incredibly long days. He arrives at his office at about 8:30 a.m. and with Tuesday’s Pennsylvania primary getting closer seldom leaves before 1 or 2 a.m.

It’s incredible to watch, not just because of the long hours but how each hour is jammed with detail, planning and management. I’ve now asked him several different ways where he finds the energy and his answer is largely because he believes so much in the candidate.

Friday night I got a first-hand taste of that. Bird is Field Director for Barack Obama in Pennsylvania and widely credited with a similar effort in South Carolina that helped turn the primary battle with Hillary Clinton in the Illinois senator’s favor.

Bird will be one of many Wabash men featured in a fall issue of Wabash Magazine with a theme of “Wabash Men in Politics.”

Jeremy arranged for me to have press credentials for Friday’s Obama rally in Independence Park which sets between the National Constitution Center and Independence Hall in the city’s oldest district.

The Philadelphia Inquirer, one of the nation’s great newspapers, reported the crowd at 35,000 in Saturday’s edition.  The energy was off the charts. It was like a rock concert.

At risk of being political I’ll stop there! I have written more about the rally with a photo album on my personal blog. If interested, you can click here. Saturday morning update: Knowing an insider helps! I accompanied Jeremy to the campaign headquarters and to the train station this morning where Obama was preparing for a day-long whistle stop tour. I’ve added another entry with photos. Just click the link above to go to both entries.

Bird’s not sure where he goes after Tuesday. There is something ironic about putting in such an intense and physically demanding effort and not knowing where you’ll be just a few days later.

But that’s the world of politics, he said. He does it because he believes. Bird said he learned at Wabash that you can do whatever you want to do – and right now he wants to work in a fall national campaign for his candidate.

- Howard W. Hewitt

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