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How Obama Prepped for The Biggest Speech of His Career

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How Obama Prepped for The Biggest Speech of His Career

Short | 02:52

In 2008, presidential candidate Barack Obama's scheduled speech to the Democratic National Convention fell on the anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s most iconic speech. While preparing, the usually composed Obama was overcome with emotion.

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Barack Obama launched into our national consciousness at the 2004 Democratic National Convention and ever since, he's delivered messages of patriotism, unity, and hope through the power of words. But of all the speeches he's given, six in particular may define his legacy as, in historian Doris Kearns Goodwin's words, "one of the best writers and orators in the presidency." Interviews with eminent historians and key figures in his writing process give rare insights into these iconic speeches, as well as the Obama presidency and the man himself.


  • Jon Favreau
  • Doris Kearns Goodwin
  • David Axelrod
  • Jon Favreau

    Jon Favreau

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    Jon Favreau is a founding partner at Fenway Strategies. He is also a co-founder of Crooked Media, and a co-host of the political podcast, Pod Save America.

    From 2009 through early 2013, Favreau served as the Director of Speechwriting for President Barack Obama, a role he also played for the President during the 2008 presidential campaign. Favreau began writing with President Obama in 2005, when he started his first term as a U.S. Senator, and has had a hand in crafting nearly every major speech that the President delivered over the last 8 years.

    Featured in TIME magazine as one of the '100 Most Influential People in the World' and in GQ's '50 Most Powerful People in D.C.,' Favreau is a public speaker with the Washington Speakers Bureau. Formerly, he was a columnist at both The Ringer and The Daily Beast, and taught a weekly seminar as a visiting fellow at the University of Chicago Institute of Politics.

    Favreau grew up outside of Boston and graduated from the College of the Holy Cross.

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