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Boston Globe: Rebooting the public image

Davis’s change of heart is striking, but skeptics may be inclined to assume that anything said by a once-and-perhaps-future politician must be tainted by some ulterior motive. No one will feel that way about the people they meet in “The Hope and the Change,” a one-hour film produced by Citizens United and screened publicly for the first time in Tampa Tuesday.

The film showcases 40 registered Democrats and independents, each of whom voted for Obama in 2008 and now is filled with buyer’s remorse. Many describe the deep joy they felt when Obama won. “I was excited to vote for Barack Obama,” one woman says. “My heart was pounding, and I was like: Yes!”

But the euphoria faded, and, one by one, the Obama voters of 2008 explain how the president they elected so rapturously lost their support. For some it was the explosion of government debt, for others the massive “stimulus” that accomplished little. A common refrain is that the president seems to be in over his head, and way too eager for the trappings of celebrity. Many lament that the candidate who promised to be the nation’s great healer has increased the level of rancor poisoning American life.

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What comes through most clearly, however, is the empty feeling of disappointment: “I voted for a change,” says a Pittsburgh voter, “but really — nothing happened.”

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