Obama in Wax Takes the Oval

By Lindsey Ellerson

Feb 11, 2008 1:22pm

ABC News’ Matt Jaffe Reports: Ever wonder what presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama would look like in the Oval Office? Well, look no further than Madame Tussauds wax museum in Washington, D.C. to catch a glimpse of what may be the nation’s political future. While "Hail to the Chief" played in the background, a wax figure of Illinois senator, standing behind the desk in the museum’s replica of the Oval Office and flanked by wax figures of the Clintons and Kennedys, was unveiled Monday morning.

Watch video from the unveiling HERE.

The figure of Obama is standing with his arms crossed, wearing a black suit and smiling broadly. To his right, figures of his Democratic rival Sen. Hillary Clinton and her husband, former president Bill Clinton. To Obama’s left, figures of another first family that graced the Oval Office, former president John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Kennedy.

"Given that this is the eve of the primaries for Maryland, D.C., and Virginia, he’s definitely in the news," said Madame Tussauds’ marketing manager Shameka Lloyd. "You open the newspaper, you look on the television, he definitely represents a historic time in this election season. He represents pop culture. He is a figure that not only are people talking about, but all of our guests are overwhelmingly asking for a Barack Obama figure so now they have it."

Lloyd said that the exhibit’s placement of the figures – with Obama directly behind the desk and Hillary off to the side – is only meant to serve as a way to put the spotlight on Obama for the day.  On Tuesday, the wax version of both Obama and Hillary Clinton will be moved out of the Oval Office exhibit and over to the Washington Links & Current Affairs hall, while those of Bill Clinton and the Kennedys will return to the Presidential Room.

"Given that this is an election season we said, ‘Hmm, why don’t we just take a little peek at what could possibly be the outcome of this election season?’ Not that we’re saying we want it to go one way or another, but Barack Obama is our newest figure and so the spotlight is on him today," said Lloyd.

The inclusion of the Kennedy figures in today’s exhibit comes just two weeks after the late President’s daughter Caroline Kennedy endorsed Obama, as did Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA) and Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-RI).

"There has been some reference to Barack Obama kind of capturing the spirit of Kennedy, so why not be flanked by the Kennedys, be flanked by the Clintons? It’s just really what people are talking about," said Lloyd.

Lloyd added that the museum’s presentation of the Obama figure is nothing more than "an endorsement of what’s being talked about by everyone else."

Over a three to six month period, the Obama figure was sculpted in London by the Madame Tussauds studio team using a picture of the senator and then shipped to Washington. Lloyd extended an invitation to Obama to come to the museum to meet his wax likeness.

"We’re happy to have him," said Lloyd. "We’re hoping that he’ll come check himself out."

The Hillary Clinton figure was unveiled on President’s Day weekend 2007 in New York City and according to Lloyd, the senator "loved it."

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