Saturday, September 12, 2009

Michelle Copenhagen Bound, Will Barack Make an Appearance?

Late yesterday, it was announced that Michelle Obama will be heading to Copenhagen to lobby IOC members on behalf of Chicago's 2016 Olympic Bid. This is good news for the bid, but still not exactly what they want.

Understandably, it sounds like President Obama won't commit due to other more important issues (like trying to pass healthcare reform or making sure the economy turns around). However, the door doesn't seem to be closed on a surprise trip to Copenhagen.

The fervor around this topic seems to be the highest yet. The Sun-Times has this pretty interesting quote:
But Ed Hula, who runs the Atlanta-based Olympics Web site, has been told Obama's presence is crucial.

"I had an IOC member tell me this morning if Obama goes to Copenhagen, Chicago will win; if he doesn't go, it will be a very close race," Hula said Friday.

And if you want an insider's perspective:
Richard Pound, an IOC member from Canada, says the race is so tight that Obama's presence could make or break Chicago's bid.

Royalty and heads of state are expected to be in Copenhagen to lobby for their respective cities, including Madrid, Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo.

"It would be a great show, and I think people are looking for a reason not to vote for one or another," Pound said.

"You send messages by having those people there that your country is really enthusiastic about this and stands behind this," Pound said. "Your competitors will use the absence as effectively as possible, especially when you have someone as charismatic as your president," he said.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great article today on the Blue-Green Olympics for CHICAGO 2016.