For someone whose strong point is his rhetorical flourishes, we now have to wonder how much of the verbal magic is actually Obama’s

Charges are flying that Obama stole word-for-word a large portion of one of Deval Patrick’s speeches. Patrick is the governor of Massachusetts.

“In many respects he is asking the public to judge him on the strength of his rhetoric,” said Howard Wolfson, a top Clinton adviser, during a conference call with reporters today. “When we learn he has taken an important section of his speech from another elected official, it raises very fundamental questions about his campaign.”

Wolfson, who at one point used the word “plagiarism” to describe the incident, was joined on the call by Democratic Rep. James McGovern (Mass.), a supporter of both Patrick’s and Clinton’s. McGovern attempted to drive home the point about the two, very similar passages, by calling into question all of the speeches that comprise Obama’s body of work from the stump.

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