发音：美式发音 语速：140词/分钟 使用方法：精听+跟读
Let me begin by saying thanks to all of you who’ve traveled, from far and wide, to bravethe cold today.
We all made this journey for a reason. It’s humbling to see a crowd like this, but in my heart I know you didn’t just come here for me; you came here because you believe in what this country can be. In the face of war, you believe there can be peace. In the face of despair, you believe there can be hope. In the face of a politics that shut you out, that’s told you to settle, that’s divided us for too long, you believe that we can be one people, reaching out for what’s possible, building that more perfect union.
That’s the journey we’re on today. But let me tell you how I came to be here. As most of you know, I am not a native of this great state. I moved to 1)Illinois over two decades ago. I was a young man then, just a year out of college; I knew no one in Chicago when I arrived; I was without money or family connections. But a group of churches had offered me a job as a community organizer for a 2)grand sum of $13,000 a year. And I accepted the job, sight unseen, motivated then by a single, simple, powerful idea—that I might play a small part in building a better America.
My work took me to some of Chicago’s poorest neighborhoods. I joined with pastors and 3)laypeople to deal with communities that had been 4)ravaged by plant closings. I saw that the problems people faced weren’t simply local in nature—that the decisions to close a steel millwas made by distant executives; that the lack of textbooks and computers in a school could be traced to 5)skewed priorities of politicians a thousand miles away; and then when a child turns toviolence, I came to realize that there’s a hole in that boy’s heart that no government alone can fill.
It was in these neighborhoods that I received the best education that I ever had, and where I learned the meaning of my Christian faith.
After three years of this work, I went to law school, because I wanted to understand how the law should work for those in need. I became a civil rights lawyer and taught constitutional law, and after a time, I came to understand that our cherished rights of liberty and equality depend on the active participation of an awakened 6)electorate. It was with these ideas in mind that I arrived in this capital city as a State Senator .
It was here, in Springfield, where I saw all that is America converge—farmers and teachers, businessmen and laborers, all of them with a story to tell, all of them seeking a seat at the table, all of them 7)clamoring to be heard. I made lasting friendships here—friends that I see in the audience here today.
It was here where we learned to disagree without being disagreeable—that it’s possible to compromise so long as you know those principles that can never be compromised; and that so long as we’re willing to listen to each other, we can assume the best in people instead of the worst.
It’s why we were able to reform a death penalty system that was broken. That’s why we were able to give health insurance to children in need. That’s why we made the tax system, right here in Springfield, more fair and just for working families, and that’s why we passed ethics reforms that the cynics said could never, ever be passed.
It was here, in Springfield, where north, south, east, and west come together that I was reminded of the essential decency of the American people—where I came to believe that through this decency, we can build a more hopeful America.
And that is why, in the shadow of the Old State Capitol, where Lincoln once called on a house divided to stand together, where common hopes and common dreams still live, I stand before you today to announce my candidacy for President of the United States of America.
I recognize that there is a certain 8)presumptuousness in this…a certain 9)audacity to this announcement. I know that I haven’t spent a lot of time learning the ways of Washington. But I’ve been there long enough to know that the ways of Washington must change.
The genius of our founders is that they designed a system of government that can be changed. And we should take heart, because we’ve changed this country before. In the face of 10)tyranny, a band of patriots brought an empire to its knees. In the face of secession, we unified a nation and set the captives free. In the face of depression, we put people back to work and lifted millions out of poverty. We welcomed immigrants to our shores, we opened railroads to the west, we landed a man on the moon, and we heard a King’s call to let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like a mighty stream. We have done this before.
Each and every time, a new generation has risen up and done what’s needed to be done. Today we are called once more—and it is time for our generation to answer that call.
I know there are those who don’t believe we can do all these things. I understand the 11)skepticism. After all, every four years, candidates from both parties make similar promises, and I expect this year will be no different. All of us running for President will travel around the country offering ten-point plans and making grand speeches; all of us will 12)trumpet those qualities we believe make us uniquely qualified to lead this country. But too many times, after the election is over, and the 13)confetti is swept away, all those promises fade from memory, and the 14)lobbyists and the special interests move in, and people turn away, disappointed as before, left to struggle on their own.
That’s why this campaign can’t only be about me. It must be about us—it must be about what we can do together. This campaign must be the occasion, the vehicle, of your hopes, and your dreams. It will take your time, your energy, and your advice—to push us forward when we’re doing right, and to let us know when we’re not. This campaign has to be about reclaiming the meaning of citizenship, restoring our sense of common purpose, and realizing that few obstacles can withstand the power of millions of voices calling for change.