Confirmation that the Obama campaign placed the axis-of-Abercrombie strategically behind Senator Obama:
At the rally, a campaign volunteer asked them to stand behind Mr. Obama during his speech. It was not clear what role the T-shirts played, if any, in their selection. Spokesmen for the Obama campaign and A&F said there was no plan to highlight A&F, and both were caught by surprise when the T-shirts drew such attention.
Virtually all campaigns strategically select the audiences who appear behind their candidate so as to send a message to television viewers. The talk on television that night from the Pennsylvania primary was about Mr. Obama’s difficulties in attracting white, working-class voters, although Mr. Obama’s audiences often feature white people. That same night, a young man with red boxing gloves was prominently displayed behind Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, who had frequently invoked the “Rocky” theme in her campaign.