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Obama Ready to Play Ball

Barack Obama
Barack Obama addresses a rally in Columbia, South Carolina, 25 January 2008. (AFP/Getty Images)
By Shailagh Murray COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Mid-afternoon in New Hampshire, the Obama campaign went into hiding as the turnout numbers rolled in and the numbers didn't look promising.

Mid-afternoon in South Carolina, with the early signs looking good, Sen. Barack Obama went to play basketball.

Smiling broadly as he walked out of his hotel here, wearing workout clothes and white basketball shoes, Obama greeted a few volunteers who were hanging out in the parking lot, posed for photos, then jumped in a van with a few staffers and sped away.

By Web Politics Editor  |  January 26, 2008; 5:06 PM ET
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Oh, and by the way, English is not an official language.

Posted by: oogleduf | January 28, 2008 4:39 AM | Report abuse

I don't intend to justify anything, it just bothers me when people attempt to argue that this is "our" country and it's being extorted by invaders for financial gain. We have to realize that our history hasn't been pretty. The Puritans were immigrants, too!! The Europeans stole land and resources from the native Americans. People migrate to where resources are better attainable. Crevecoeur wrote: "Ubi panis ibi patria" ("Where there is bread, there is (my) country"). To the fellow who calculated that our deficit can be directly related to the "illegal" immigrants, I'm not denying it, but we're in a costly war and I'm almost certain that that is the cause for our high deficit.

Posted by: oogleduf | January 28, 2008 4:35 AM | Report abuse

I read that Obama's Los Angeles ads read "This is your land "in Spanish . If this was their land ,the ads would be in English .This is America .We have never had to push one for English with any immigrants coming here.I hope the California voters are fed up enough to make a real difference .It is past time.An illegal al;ien is NOT an immigrant . Immigrants go thru a legal process.

Posted by: mamabegood | January 27, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Senator Obama's immigration policy is pretty much the same as McCain's. Secure the border, pathway to being legal, pay fines, take your place in line. You can't round up every illegal and send them back. Impossible and would be way to expensive. Also, Senator Obama picked up a big endorsement this morning from a leading Hispanic Congressman from Los Angeles.

Posted by: GraceMN | January 27, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Obama is for OPEN BORDERS and AMNESTY!
--He voted for amnesty
--He voted for the Dream Act, that would take College slots(every beneficiary would be one less seat for an American teenager) from Middle and Low income American families.
--he voted to give your social security money to illegal immigrants
--he voted against adding or training more Border agents and against a fence.
--he voted against stopping illegals from using welfare benefits food stamps, health care and housing- therefore taking homes away from America's elderly, disabled veterans and Americans with disabilities.
--he voted against sending gang members back to their home country, if they said they wouldn't break our laws.
--Obama, Clinton and Bush consider and label American citizens RACIST, if we don't agree to lie down and allow our country to be taken over by every third world inhabitant that seeks to extort financial gain from the success and ingenuity of generations of hardworking Americans? If illegal aliens are granted amnesty by these deceitful politicians , we will surely be engaged in a culture war in the not too distant future that will quickly turn violent.

Posted by: aslinnwinthrop | January 27, 2008 2:01 AM | Report abuse

What's next someone asked? It has already started that many liberals are waking up to the duplicitous nature of the Clintons, recognizing that the Republican complaints about them were accurate. They have comfortably gotten away with lacking any morality in their behavior, but to actively lie and distort the record of an upstanding and well motivated man like Obama - who is from their own party, this is untenable.

We have seen attacks against Obama that are malicious and people trying to make mountains out of molehills - such as: he's a closet muslim, he received donations from Renzo or Renzo organized fundraisers of his behalf, he voted present 130 times out of 4000 in Illinois, he pushed the wrong button a few times in the Illinois State Senate. THESE ALL AMOUNT TO NOTHING!

However, when you look at the Clintons you will find a serious pattern of dishonesty a mile long - Peter Paul, Hsu, attacks on other countries to draw attention from Bill's infidelities, non-UN approved intervention in Kosovo, lying and double-crossing people in the most disgusting ways, Hillary putting public face on issues to do something different behind the publics back.

I predict that what is next is that people's voices will become louder and louder to out Hillary for what she is. It won't be easy for her to dismiss them after she and Bill have proven to be so dishonest in the way they have dealt with Obama.

What Bill and Hillary forget is that they have never run a country-wide contest since the mid-90's, ergo since the advent of the internet and the knowledge base that has opened up to the people (the internet also being a major reason why financial times were so good in the 90's - Clinton's taking credit for this by Osmosis).

It used to be that if you had the networks in your pocket and the local newspapers, you could deceive people much more easily. In this day and age, that deception is much more transparent and knowledge runs like wildfire over the internet and then down into the grapevines of the local communities.

Already disturbed at the damage that Hillary and Bill are doing to the party through their treatment of Obama, the Democratic Party will push for Obama over Clinton, realizing that it will not only be large amounts of Independents and Republicans who would never vote for her, but increasingly large amounts of democrats too. Hillary will be given a position that gives her some respect but limits her control.

So that is what I think will happen anyway.

Posted by: JayKay2 | January 26, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

I was always a Bill Clinton fan, though not a Hillary fan. Still I thought she was more qualified than Obama and I was a bit put off by Obama-mania, so I was planning to vote for Hillary in my state's primary on Super Tuesday. But after the nasty campaign tactics of the past week, I'm not so sure anymore. All of a sudden I'm UNDECIDED.

It offends me to see Obama stereotyped as the black candidate. His father was black. His mother was white. Doesn't that make him all inclusive?

Posted by: slangster04 | January 26, 2008 7:39 PM | Report abuse

I really hope people can get beyond gender/race. I was able to vote early here in Illinois today. I voted for the person that I felt could bring about positive change and has the experience to show that they can do it,..Hillary Clinton

Posted by: jmmdls | January 26, 2008 6:50 PM | Report abuse

I absolutely don't believe it's accurate to characterize illegal immigrants as "using forged documents to obtain employment, and welfare, food stamps, and housing subsidies." Granted they use some kind of bogus document to get a job, and once they have that job they don't need nor use welfare, food stamps nor housing subsidies. I've seen no believable studies that claim they are "robbing" us beleageured American taxpayers in that way. They're collecting our garbage, washing our restaurant dishes, cleaning our houses, painting our houses, mowing our lawns, bagging our groceries, fixing our cars and even installing our cable TV lines... If this hard work doesn't put them in "good standing" I don't know what does. I live near a heavily Hisapanic neighborhood yet I have only ever seen caucasians or African Americans paying for groceries with food stamps, NEVER Hispanics. Get off the backs of our latter-day Irish and Italians; we need them.

Posted by: phils1 | January 26, 2008 6:44 PM | Report abuse

Mitt Romney publicly professes that he is concerned about Bill Clinton being back in the White House with a lot of free time on his hands.

He shouldn't worry, and it just goes to show you Mitt Romney's lack of imagination.

There are lots of public/private initiatives that come to mind, just off the top of one's head, some of which the ex-president could conduct from the comfort of the Lincoln bedroom.

Consider these:

1) Special envoy to Fidel's Gulag to end U.S. embargo on Cuban cigars.

2) Commissioner of National Women's Softball League.

3) National spokesperson for adolescent campaign for sexual abstinence.

4) Head of the Motion Picture Association (with lots of unpublicized trips to Hollywood, and foreign film colonies--nothing like private diplomacy, I always say).

5) Head of the U.S. Office of Public Integrity.

6) Chief, White House intern program.

7) Special advisor, Congressional intern program.

8) Co-Chair, with Clarence Thomas and Larry Craig, of blue-ribbon National Commission for the Rights of High-Minded but Misunderstood Public Servants.

9) Washington-based Rove-ing correspondent, Hustler magazine.

10) "Green" Czar, with special portfolio to promote sowing of wild oats ...

If the Republicans choose Romney, claiming that his vast experience in the private sector makes him tailor made to right the economy, we Democrats have a better argument with a Clinton co-presidency. ...

Bill Clinton has been getting down to business for years!

Posted by: Martinedwinandersen | January 26, 2008 6:34 PM | Report abuse

in good standing.... if they are not in good standing then it is another story... also, securing borders will prevent future influx of illegals. one issue at stake, once they are here, is the separation of families, esp once kids are born.

Posted by: clarie1968 | January 26, 2008 6:10 PM | Report abuse

sorry I was cooking while typing that last message... and got distracted by the dog, too... essentially delete "and for providing back of" and the rest of the hasty summary should be easier to understand! The Blueprint for Change has a lot of good info on all of his policies... not just immigration....

Posted by: clarie1968 | January 26, 2008 6:08 PM | Report abuse

4- all undocumented citizens in good standing to pay a fine, have a chance to learn English and to go to the "back of the line" for consideration for legal immigration.

Huh?? The illegal immigrants are here illegally; they don't belong in our country. There is no good standing!! They broke the law when they entered the United States. They continue to break the law while they are here, by using forged documents to obtain employment, and welfare, food stamps, and housing subsidies.

Posted by: buzzm1 | January 26, 2008 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Obama is promoting Amnesty for illegal immigrants. Show me where Obama is going to force the illegal immigrants to leave our country.

Posted by: buzzm1 | January 26, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

A few months ago I would happily have cast a vote for Hillary Clinton if she wins the Democratic nomination.

That is no longer true. I've seen in both Clintons, since New Hampshire, that everything the right has always said about them might well be true, at least in terms of character - or the lack of it. For someone who has spent the last sixteen years defending Bill and Hillary Clinton, their vicious attacks on Obama feels like a broadside.

Bill says Hillary v McCain would be a peaceful presidential campaign. That is a stretch of huge proportions. I don't think it's possible to have a peaceful campaign with either Clinton in the mix.

Posted by: sherirogers | January 26, 2008 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Since Bill has decided to enter the race, Obama should address the issue head on --- Bill disgraced the office of the President and now he is campaigning to be back in the White House -- is this really what America wants? You can bet that the republicans will hit the issue hard if Hillary is the nominee - so put it on the table now and let the voters weigh in. I suspect that this issue will cost the dems dearly if Hillary is running against McCain.

Say no to American political dynasties - Go Obama!

Posted by: david_misc | January 26, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Obama is not in favor of illegal immigration; he is in favor of reforming immigration policy, and for providing back-of- section 39 on his Blueprint for Change doc gives more details, but essentially it appears he is for
1- securing borders
2- improving immigration system
3- remove incentives to enter illegally
4- all undocumented citizens in good standing to pay a fine, have a chance to learn English and to go to the "back of the line" for consideration for legal immigration
5- promote economic develpment in Mexico to prevent illegal immigration

All this is in much more detail, but I think his approach is fair and balanced.

Posted by: clarie1968 | January 26, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

bum1, I didn't say I would vote against Obama, I said I won't vote for Obama until he develops a strong stand against illegal immigration. Not to worry, I wouldn't vote for Hillary even if she developed a strong stand against illegal immigration.

Illegal immigrants are costing American taxpayers 150 billion dollars a year for the free benefits they are provided.

CA has a 14.5 billion dollar state budget deficit, all of which can be directly attibuted to the costs of illegal immigrants within our state.

Posted by: buzzm1 | January 26, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

That Obama should now be ready to play ball is no great surprise after playing foul ball with the race card in his effort to win South Carolina through the black community's votes. Now for the last few hours, he's been trying to win white votes, too. Such a divisive way to achieve unity!

Posted by: Ruffles1 | January 26, 2008 5:47 PM | Report abuse

I regret that the Clintons have exhibited such disreputably demagogic, and absolutely unforgivably unretractable tactics that they have simply eliminated, in their rants and in their smears, any claim to a distinction between their candidacy and the Republican Party of our time. I can not accept their 50 percent femininity as a compensatory "change." I will never extend a vote of mine to be betrayed and shamed by them.

Posted by: Carter_NIcholas_readily_targetable_in_Virginia | January 26, 2008 5:41 PM | Report abuse


if you're xenophobic enough to vote against someone just for speaking spanish to a spanish-speaking audience, you're in the wrong political party anyway. go to the GOP where xenophobia is welcome and encouraged.

Posted by: bum1 | January 26, 2008 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Obama is already campaigning for the Hispanic vote in CA, with the Si, Se, Puede chant. Californians are highly enraged about the invasion of CA by illegal immigrants, and the si, se, puede, does nothing more than enrage them even more.

The last time I checked, Hispanics were still a minority in CA, and by campaigning for the Hispanic vote, and failing to take a strong stand against illegal immigration, Obama will lose the vote of the majority of Californians. That's a guarantee!!

Posted by: buzzm1 | January 26, 2008 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Given the advent of Bill in the campaign, why doesn't the Obama camp all refer to his leading opponent as Mrs. Bill Clinton?

Posted by: jakepage | January 26, 2008 5:25 PM | Report abuse

...the presidency, hopefully.
Farmville, VA

Posted by: osmacabr | January 26, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

And so Obama wins SC... What next?

Posted by: parkerfl | January 26, 2008 5:09 PM | Report abuse

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