Obama "Plagiarizes" About As Much As Adam Gopnik

For about 25 seconds in Wisconsin, Barack Obama spoke some lines pretty much identical to those spoken in 2006 by his friend Deval Patrick, governor of Massachusetts. The lines were about the power of words in speeches and documents, about how words have more power than they are often given credit for. Of course, now the Obama campaign is saying no one should care too much about these particular words, or whether Obama really wrote them, since everything is OK with Patrick. This is disingenuous, and some people are very worked up about it. But it's 25 seconds — a fraction of a fraction of a speech. Sounds a lot more like Adam Gopnik borrowing the concept of "verticality" from Mike Huckabee for one of his twee New Yorker pieces than, say, that one-day New York Press sex columnist who copied Dan Savage wholesale, or Kaavya Viswanathan at Harvard, repeatedly copying passages from real author Megan McCafferty for her debut novel. Compare the Obama and Patrick speeches for yourself, after the jump.

[ABC News via Big Head DC