Stump speech

Or is it towering Sequoia speech?

Until Yao Ming announces who he’s backing, Barack Obama has won the nation’s tallest public endorsement — Blazers’ rookie Greg Oden announced on his blog this week that he’s voting for Obama. The Illinois senator’s campaign says Oden will stump for Obama, too.

Odom, who has missed the entire season after microfracture surgery, accompanied the Blazers to Los Angeles this week. I asked him about the brief phone conversation he had recently with Obama.

“My agency set it up, we were talking about the video that he made and there were questions about if I could be in the video, then it came up to talking with him, so that’s what happened,” Oden said.

“It was cool. It was very brief, it wasnt like we were talking about politics. We just had a conversation, a lot about sports. He talked a lot about this team, He knew about LaMarcus [Aldridge], about Brandon [Roy]. It was good even if it was quick.”

Oden, who is 20, will be voting for the first time. He said he doesn’t follow politics closely and doesn’t know many of the ins and outs of Obama’s policy proposals, but he’s read some of his thoughts on education, health care and civil rights. He said the opportunity to help elect an African-American president didn’t play a role in his decision.

“I dont really look at it like that,” he said. “ I’m looking at the person who I feel thats best to run this country. “I dont know a lot, but I know enough that thats who Im going to vote for.

“The way I look at it, he’s talking about things for — not my immediate family, but my other family. Things that are going to help them. I know I can take of me, my mother and my brother, but looking out for my grandmother, people I cant always take care of all the time things that are going to help them.”

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