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Obama Appeals for Calm in Kenya

By Shailagh Murray
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- Sen. Barack Obama took a break from campaigning today to appeal for calm in Kenya, where more than 300 people have died in the violent uprising that followed a controversial presidential election on Sunday. Obama's late father was from Kenya, and he often cites his ties to Africa as one of the factors that informs his world view.

Obama spoke to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice about the Kenyan crisis on Tuesday evening, and today, in Davenport, he read a statement on Voice of America Worldwide English radio. Here's an excerpt:

"Despite irregularities in the vote tabulation, now is not the time to throw that strong democracy away," Obama said. He urged President Mwai Kibaki, who won narrowly re-election under a cloud of suspicion, along with opposition leaders, "to come together and to start a political process to address peacefully the controversies that divide them."

By Web Politics Editor  |  January 2, 2008; 6:47 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama  
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I'm registered Independent, and I was considering voting for Obama, until they banned me at his web site.

Posted by: JakeD | January 3, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

I hope Senator Obama is elected President and can help broker negotiations in many hot spots in the world, with much more multinational cooperation than we'll have had in 8 years.

Obviously, Christian-by-choice Barack has his own father's family - whom he's met personally, and yes they are African Muslims, of which there are also anywhere from 1% Muslims in Gabon Africa to 100% Muslims in Oman N. Africa - to personally worry about in the unrest in Kenya. He has every right to say something to Kenyan citizens - many of whom admire him, by the way - that does not add to the conflict, to encourage cooler heads to prevail, and to try to get our incompetent current administration to act before another civil war breaks out under the Bush/Cheney/Rice watch. As it did under the Clinton/Gore watch in Rwanda and for a disgraceful "while" in Serbia- Croatia.

One of Obama's top advisers is Stephanie Power Pulitzer Prize winning author of The Problem from Hell: America in the Age of Genocide. She's an expert on prevention/reversal of genocide, and her inclusion in Obama's top level team of advisers demonstrates his dedication to ending our government's failure to intercede and end genocide with the help of the international community. He's quite practical about this as everything else: he points out the devastation and destabilization to neighboring countries from massive refugee relocation, and offers a carrot to dignify their cooperation when the stick's right behind his back - don't interfere unless it's to help end the conflict peacefully, otherwise the international community will take action.

Obviously, he's getting my vote, and everyone else's I can get for him.

Posted by: VCubed | January 3, 2008 3:59 AM | Report abuse

I often wonder at posters who post that Obama is a Muslim or imply that he is a Muslim. I wonder if they actually believe what they are saying or if they are really working for political oponents of Obama and are making a calcuated attempt to find a way to tear him down. Part of me wants to believe that they are being genuine, but that part doesn't want to believe that they are genuinely dumb.

Posted by: Retnep | January 2, 2008 11:22 PM | Report abuse

A recent NYTimes story suggests that Bloomberg would enter an Obama- Huckabee match up.

I doubt it.

Suppose Obama wins the democratic ticket. Since Obama's support comes partly from independents and moderate republicans (more here), Bloomberg would be facing a very tough contest against someone who would have the organization and momentum from the primaries (although beating the Clintons could take a crippling toll on Obama). Idealogically, Obama and Blomberg are pretty close (which has been driving many on the far left crazy).

If Bloomberg is really running to win (rather than the entertain his ego), an Obama democratic ticket would prevent him from running since Obama's message would leave little room for Bloomberg's pitch for a bi-partisan pragmatic approach to pressing problems.

Check out:
An Independent Dartmouth Student Opines on the 08 Election

Posted by: indvox | January 2, 2008 10:54 PM | Report abuse

So, wait a second, jade_7243 -- I try to correct someone who claims Obama is Muslim and you jump all over ME instead of the person who claimed Obama is Muslim?

Posted by: JakeD | January 2, 2008 10:00 PM | Report abuse

Barack Obama does not CLAIM to be a Christian. He is Christian.

Those of you who claim to be Christians should not be so unchristian as to cast stones, first, last or in between.

re: Your "war" with Islam... get over it.

Posted by: jade_7243 | January 2, 2008 9:56 PM | Report abuse

I don't disagree that "the last thing we need is an islamic as president during a war with islam" but, to be fair, Barack HUSSEIN Obama claims to be a Christian and not Muslim.

Posted by: JakeD | January 2, 2008 7:48 PM | Report abuse

maybe barack HUSSEIN obama should keep his mouth shut until he is actually the head of the executive branch, as if that will ever happen.
the last thing we need is an islamic as president during a war with islam, which they started 1400 years ago.

Posted by: infantry11b4faus | January 2, 2008 7:39 PM | Report abuse

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