On Thursday, the Obama campaign opened its Chicago reelection headquarters to the media. Reporters and photographers were briefly able to scamper around a single-floor of the building and jot down nearly every poster, slogan and square foot as evidence of a potential political strategy.
Right from the get-go, visiting reporters were greeted with a sign that said "Respect. Empower. Include. Win," a catch-all slogan that will be dissected countless times before the campaign truly begins. In the same over-analytical vein, here's the other everyday office items that could be attributed more meaning than they might deserve:
- The Chicago Location: "Trying to win re-election from outside Washington is something no incumbent president has done in decades," relays the Associated Press. Reading Into the Decision: The location could be a clear way to send a message that Obama hears "real people's concerns" as aides have said, rather than being beltway-centric. Or: Obama is just comfortable in Chicago.
- The Size of the Office: "The office occupies 50,000 square feet on a single floor — up from 31,000 in the 2008 headquarters," observed Politico. Reading Into the Decision: Another tell-tale sign that Obama is looking to raise over a $1 billion dollars for his reelection. Or: since he's president now, he's just accumulated a little more staff over time.
- The Layout of the Office: Only a few key campaign leaders have actual offices, the rest work in rows in the center of the floor. Reading Into It: The "space's organization reflects Obama's grassroots campaign style, which is open and inclusive," noted Reuters. Or: It was easier to build quickly that way, and convenient for staffers to communicate, like they're doing for the cameras below.