Obama dips toe in 2008 White House waters

Oct. 18, 2006 at 3:27 PM

CHICAGO, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., turned aside questions about a possible 2008 White House run Wednesday, telling Oprah Winfrey he was focusing on this November.

Launching his new book, "The Audacity of Hope," with a major media tour -- including the "Today" show, "Larry King Live" and "Meet the Press" -- has fueled intense speculation about his potential to become a Democratic candidate.

Obama has been having "quiet conversations" about a White House run, The Chicago Tribune reports.

A key concern is whether his wife, Michelle, would support it and whether he could manage the time away from their two young daughters, the newspaper says.

"He has gotten the presidential bug bite," said Donna Brazile, Al Gore's 2000 campaign manager.

Obama told WBBM-TV Chicago that at the 2000 Democratic convention, "I didn't even have a pass to get to the floor of the convention. Four years later I'm giving the keynote."

He would not say what would happen four years after that.

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