Senator Bernard Sanders has become an internet media sensation at the age of 69. His speech in the Senate on Friday became a rolling marathon, not just for its public speaking but also for its twitter updates.
The independent Senator from Vermont took to the lectern at 1025 in the morning and finished his speech to bemused colleagues in the Senate nearly nine hours later. In business he wouldn’t have stood a chance. But in America’s Senate this is business, if not business as normal.
He began his speech with the words:
“Iâ€™m not here to set any great records, or to make a spectacle…”
But, he noted, he would speak as long as possible. That’s the essence of the filibuster.
It’s an internet sensation. But it’s not a record. That record sits with the late Senator Strom Thurmond. As Democrat Senator for South Carolina his 1957 speech in the Senate went on for 24 hours and 18 minutes. That’s right. A 24 hour speech!
Fortunately Senator Sanders is a long way from that record. For anyone who’s thinking of inflicting such public speaking agony on their audience here are some tips from Senator Sanders:
And one last thing, get used to your audience only listening to the odd 10 or 15 minutes of your speech.
The Principal Trainer at training business Time to Market. Based in Oxford, I run presentation and public speaking training courses, coaching sessions and seminars throughout the UK. Andrew Ivey on Google+