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Campaigning in the State of Denial?


Hillary Clinton holds "Solutions for America Town Hall Meeting" at Grace E. Metz Middle School in Manassass. (Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post.)

By Anne E. Kornblut
MANASSAS, Va. -- After watching her rival win by dramatic margins in four contests on Saturday, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton made no mention of the defeats during her appearance at a Democratic Party dinner in Richmond on Saturday night.

And she ignored the results again here on Sunday. During a campaign appearance at a middle school, Clinton took questions, made a forceful case against the Republican front-runner -- and said not a word about her rival's successes.

"I look forward to making it clear that I have big differences with my friend Senator McCain," Clinton said, of Republican front-runner John McCain. Her aides said she might mention the contests later on in the day; the results of caucuses on Sunday in Maine will be known sometime after 7 p.m.

Typically, a losing candidate calls the winner in a gracious gesture of concession. But with so many different races on the line at so many points in the Democratic race, protocol seems to have somewhat fallen away. Clinton did not stay in South Carolina on the night of the primary there, instead flying on to Tennessee, which she won on Feb. 5. This time, her campaign has barely acknowledged that the races in Nebraska, Louisiana, Washington state and the U.S. Virgin Islands -- all of which went resoundingly for Sen. Barack Obama -- took place at all, except to note that Obama had long said he would triumph.

By Washington Post Editors  |  February 10, 2008; 3:33 PM ET
 
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Comments

Having considered it for a bit, I have come up with Clinton's New theme song for the campaign, "Don't Stop Thinking Abouth the Nineties."

Posted by: tinsman99 | February 12, 2008 5:05 AM | Report abuse

Guys, let's all give a hand for JakeD supporting the Clintons' third term so bravely. You see, he's not like us.

He has no job, so he can't support with money, although she so desperately needs him to, since she hasn't even paid off her cleaning bill in Iowa. He clearly has a venomous personality, so phone calls are out. And since he hasn't left his parents' basement since the end of the Clintons' last presidency, has horrible acne and a carpel-tunnel syndrome, so door-knocking is out. Obsessively posting hateful and racist lies is the ONLY way he can support his candidate. By God, I'll fight to the death for his right to do it.

So let's all post our one comment, make our contribution to our candidate, and then get back on the phones calling up supporters to get them out to the polls.
JakeD's got a lot of obsessive refreshing to do here, and I wish him well.

Posted by: quotientintel | February 11, 2008 8:20 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and by the way, about all this "natural born citizen" stuff:

Mr. Obama was born in Hawaii on August 4th, 1961.

Mr. McCain was born on August 29, 1936, at the Coco Solo Air Base in the then-American-controlled Panama Canal Zone.

Both men are eligible to be President of the United States.

Posted by: brettl | February 11, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Guys, don't feed the troll, make him explain himself.

JakeD - what was the purpose of the all caps HUSSEIN in your original comment? Please explain this.

For what it's worth - we know the man's middle name. Putting it in all caps looks to me like an oft-used, underhanded attempt to apply a racist stereotype.

My middle name - Henri - is spelled on my birth certificate with that ending i, not a y. My father's family is French, but I am an American citizen. It may also interest you to know that I had NO control over what my parents named me.

If Barack Hussein Obama's name was Skippy Hitler McFluffypants I'd still vote for him (even despite his admitted past drug use). The man has been open and honest about his entire life - including his tax returns, unlike the Clintons - yet he still gets attacks from small little people like you.

Posted by: brettl | February 11, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

formlessness:

You certainly have every right to your opinions -- I'm most curious as to the basis for your opinion that my specific Constitutional Law opinions as to McCain elegibility "most assuradely suck" -- may I ask which Law School YOU graduated from?

Posted by: JakeD | February 11, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Everything Obama is advocating for is on his website. Go check it out.

Posted by: hotloquito | February 11, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Jake D,
You suck, your comments suck, your opinions most assuradely suck and well your face, yep that sucks too.

Now the truth hurts so I'll let you digest this for a minute before you get back on your high horse and start rattling off all of those crappy JakeD opinions again.... uh I feel one coming now, look out it's going to be completely false and full of rascists sentiments...

Posted by: formlessness | February 11, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

bonsai5966:

I've been using LEGAL drugs, under appropriate dosage or physician's care, my entire life. Again, it's always easy to answer honest questions. Why doesn't Obama do the same?

politiciannc:

The Constitution requires every President to be a "natural born Citizen" not that he (or she) be actually born in the United States -- it is clear that foreign-born Americans at the time the Constitution was adopted were also eligible to become President, provided they met the age and residency requirements -- McCain is a "natural born Citizen" no doubt about that. Besides, you really think the Roberts Supreme Court is going to PUNISH John McCain for being born while his U.S. Navy ADMIRAL father and mother were sationed abroad?!

eightspeeder:

Until Obama DENIES that he was ever an addict or dealer of illegal drugs -- he hasn't even said that he doesn't currently abuse drugs -- it wouldn't matter to you if he was CURRENTLY a coke addict?

Posted by: JakeD | February 11, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

JakeD, no matter how much you beat the "drug abuse" horse, doesn't make it any less dead. In fact, if you read the NY Times article (and they can't exactly be said to be wholly pro-Obama, with their Clinton endorsement, as well an increasingly bitter and rabid Paul Krugman) from a few days ago:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/09/us/politics/09obama.html?ref=politics

Obama's admitted drug use seems to have been EXAGERATED by Obama himself. He was never an addict, abuser, or dealer of drugs. By all accounts, he would occasionally toke up when it was offered, and was rarely known to get completely smashed.

I wholly resent anyone who tells me that people who were occasional drug users in their late teens/ early 20's, who have since quit drugs and only been moderate drinkers, are somehow disqualified from the presidency. I used to smoke pot and get drunk in college. Surveys show that a clear majority of college students have tried weed and gotten drunk. We're not all perfect angels. People need time in late childhood/ early adulthood to deal with big questions of their identity, to discover the very core of their being that will shape their adulthood. It's especially difficult when you throw race into the equation.

For me, these struggles that Obama wrote about in his book only strengthen my sense of his character. I can clearly see that what drives him is his quest for justice and a desire to see people's better natures brought out. In Clinton, I see only a power-hungry autocrat.

Posted by: eightspeeder | February 11, 2008 7:52 AM | Report abuse

When Hillary's fans refer to her as "experienced" I am mildly amused. Her "experience" is certainly nothing to brag about, since she uses the Clinton name but shuns the shame,and the blame: NAFTA, China free trade for starters. Do her fans really blank out the fact that her husband used the Oval Office as his playground? The Clintons boosted the profits of corporations at the expense of the average citizen. It's time to put a stop to Corporate greed. The Clinton machine intends to set up shop in the White House again. Hillary had her chance, and should have taken care of all the things she now claims she can fix. Too late, we're smarter now, too many of us got burned and the torch has passed.
BTW, I'm disgusted with the undercover racist remarks made toward Obama. Some of you try to generate distrust and slyly mention fear. That betrays your ignorance and proves that intelligence is not guaranteed by skin color. I am proud of the support for Barack Obama, and no, he will not be Hillary's running mate for VP. One more thing, a little reality check: who do you think would actually agree to be on the ballot with her, and serve Billary?

Posted by: Cali-Gram | February 11, 2008 5:19 AM | Report abuse

What concerns me is that the contests that Obama is winning are mainly caucuses or red states that we as Democrats have no hope of winning in November. The majority of states he won on Super Tuesday were caucuses or red states: Alaska, North Dakota, Idaho, Utah, Colorado, Alabama, Georgia, Kansas, Minnesota. The only blue states he won were Illinois (his home state) and Connecticut and Delaware, each with comparatively small populations.

Moreover, in caucus states, the turnout was extremely low (as is always the case with the caucus because it tends to disenfranchise a large portion of the electorate). Alaska, Idaho, Alaska, Colorado and Kansas combined had less than 200,000 people participate...Alaska had less than 600. Further, these five wins do not speak to his electability. These states will be red in November, no matter what. He is not widening the electorate. Many, if not all, of these states' caucuses were closed, meaning only registered Democrats were involved. Even if they were open, the number of people participating was so low as to be negligible compared to the Republican turn out.

On the other hand, it is Clinton that has proven through these primaries that she is indeed the most electable and will be the most formidable candidate in the general election. It is she who has won all the big states so far (baring Illinois) that are critical to a Democratic victory: California, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Florida, Michigan. Further, she will most certainly win Ohio and Texas. In addition, she has done the best among swing states and states that will be in contention in November: New Mexico, Nevada, Arkansas, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Florida, Arizona (McCain's home state).

As for "the sweep," this is all spin and hype. Washington State and Nebraska were both caucuses...and Nebraska will certainly be in the Republican column come November. Louisianna can be explained just like his wins in Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, and I predict, Virginia, Maryland and DC...large African American electorates.

Until it is shown that he can win a state that we have a chance of taking from the Republicans in November without a caucus and without large African American populations, Hillary is clearly the strongest candidate for November. If she wins Ohio, Texas and Pennsylvania, she will have won every big state and most of the swing states. Will we really nominate a candidate that has floated along on caucuses, red states and African American votes...I surely hope not, because to do so will ensure our loss in November.

However, it is not just states and electorate that lead me to think Hillary is our strongest candidate. Her political experience, National Security knowledge, and proven record of taking on the Republican attack machine assure me that she can win in November.

I agree with some others here that he has not been vetted and has received an inordinate amount of positive press, whereas the media takes every chance it gets to vilify Hillary Clinton. The Republicans have been at her for 16 years and she's still kicking. They have yet to take a bite out of Obama, and when they do, his demise will be quick and ugly.

Also, his lack of experience in these troubling times cannot be discounted. We need more than an inspirational speaker, we need a leader not a cheerleader. Hillary has the experience to get us out of these tough times. Obama, at this time, is best suited to be Vice President. We can't afford for him to learn on the job right now. We need decisive, experience guided, action. Hillary is the Democrat that can provide that.

Posted by: tamila2008 | February 11, 2008 1:46 AM | Report abuse

It comes as no surprise to me that Hillary is so lacking in grace when she suffers a loss like this. If you recall (as I vividly do), on the night of her crushing South Carolina defeat she couldn't be bothered to give a concession speech or even publicly thank her supporters in that state before rushing off to catch a flight that evening to Memphis. Instead, in a profoundly boneheaded move, she left it to her husband to mention the loss almost in passing during his speech that same night to a roomful of campaigners in... Missouri?!? It wasn't so bad that she dissed Obama, but she publicly dissed her own loyal and hardworking staff, not to mention the whole state of South Carolina--she couldn't wait to get out of there and put them all behind her.

I have to admit that at that moment, when I saw how her campaign had totally mismanaged that situation, I knew that the turning point had come. Americans hate pettiness and sulking, and that night the Clintons were oozing both. And the last 48 hours have proven that (thankfully, for the Obama Campaign) the Clintons still haven't learned that lesson. Queen Hillary is getting downright pissy that the coronation is ever later in coming, eh? LOL

Posted by: whatmeregister | February 11, 2008 1:45 AM | Report abuse

bonsai5966:
What??? You better check back on comments by other people because I was not the one that brought up the HUSSEIN. Are we on the same page here? By the way I am not trying to explain myself. I don't have to. I was trying for you to see the point I was trying to make in my first statement. Have a nice night.

Posted by: renaissancemd | February 10, 2008 8:45 PM | Report abuse

renaissancemd,
I'm calling BS on your explanation above.

When you walk into a venue, and ask that question, (exactly as you have phrased them above), you are either oblivious to your asocial behavior, or your doing it just to "agitate."

You are completely aware that adding the "HUSSEIN" in caps, in the middle of the question is designed to agitate. It's the "code" the righties use to accuse him of being muslim.

Nice try!

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 8:30 PM | Report abuse

Bonsai5966:
I don't recall putting Obama down at any time. I have read Hillary's as well as Barack's books. I know the facts about them both, as well as the republicans and other candidates that are not even mentioned in the race. If you want facts I can give them to you. Maybe I can put it another way: people are being caught in a wave that is cresting and they are enjoying the ride. There is nothing wrong with this as long as the data backs up the speech. Give me the numbers. Tell me what will happen to the 15 million americans that will be left out of Obama's health care plan. We can go on. I like them both. I just want the people to elect the best candidate, not the media.

Posted by: renaissancemd | February 10, 2008 8:14 PM | Report abuse

ancientk:
As you can see in my comment I qualified my statement saying that Obama was nothing like Hitler! I could of used many other examples, like Fidel Castro or John Kennedy. The point I wanted to make was the mesmerizing effect he has as a leader, which is great for him but some people are mislead by charm. He is definitely qualified, but so is Hillary. The fact that Hillary was mentioned more in 2007 had minimal effect because the primaries had not been heald. Now that the primaries are in full swing it should be equal turf. I don't know if you saw the returns on CNN but they took forever to call the states won by Hillary on Super Tuesday compared to Obama. Maybe I am seeing things that are not there but I had this impression. Hitler is a disgraceful member of the human race and I agree he is beyond comparison. I in no way meant to imply that Obama, or anyone else for that matter, has anything in common with this monster. The reference was made to the way people are reacting. Maybe I should have used Gandhi as an example, whom I admire. Have a nice night.

Posted by: renaissancemd | February 10, 2008 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Politiciannc,

Here's a hint: Where exactly was he born in Panama? This is important, and will resolve your "Constitutional Crisis" for you.

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Politiciannc,

Try doing a bit more research...

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 7:46 PM | Report abuse

John McCain can not be PRESIDENT!
why? He was born in Panama.. Therefore under the constitution he does not qualify to be President. It needs to be clarified by the Supreme Court.
He is a Citizen because both parents are but he is hold under the same rule as Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and any other Citizen NO BORN IN THE USA.

Can some Bring this to the Public... How is this possible when Under the Constitution he is not permitted to become President.

Posted by: politiciannc | February 10, 2008 7:39 PM | Report abuse

How long have you been using drugs, without abusing them? That's an honest question.

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 7:25 PM | Report abuse

bonsai5966:

I have never beat my wife. See how easy it is to answer honest questions. I also never abused drugs.

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Are you still beating your wife? That's an honest question.

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 7:21 PM | Report abuse

More press for Hillary: Guess what just happened in Maine? Maryland, Virginia, and DC are next. Five straight, soon to be eight. Obama!

Posted by: gmundenat | February 10, 2008 7:21 PM | Report abuse

JakeD,

That's an open-ended question by the way...

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 7:20 PM | Report abuse

Is Obama still abusing drugs is an honest question -- which he has NOT answered yet -- and I'm sure one your side would have wished was asked of George Bush before he got (s)elected too.

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 7:19 PM | Report abuse

P.P.S. to thephantomblot -- on the Clinton firing her campaign manager thread -- how is my defense of McCain as Constitutionally-eligible to be President as a "natural born Citizen" an anti-Obama remark?

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 7:17 PM | Report abuse

JakeD,

Please explain to me what an "honest" question is, because your's are all loaded.

For Example: "In his books, Barack HUSSEIN Obama has also told the story of his drug abuse (is he still using?) and anger at whites."

It's all factual, but nicely twisted. Join the repubs dude. Your definition of honest is more appropriate in that party.

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Darn it, CNN just called Maine for Obama (that's "an anti-Obama remark" BTW ; )

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 7:14 PM | Report abuse

P.S. to thephantomblot -- on the newest thread about Huckabee's campaign filing a complaint against McCain being declared the winner even though not all of the votes were counted -- how is my agreement with Huckabee "an anti-Obama remark"?

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Again, that is a "yes or no" question but feel free to ignore that as well ; )

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 7:11 PM | Report abuse

bonsai5966:

I simply asked the same honest questions I have here. Is that my "fault"?

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 7:10 PM | Report abuse

Actually, Jimmy Carter was President in December of 1979 -- when the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan -- I credit Carter with putting the final pieces into play with the trade embargo and boycott of the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. Ronald Reagan simply built on those sanctions -- and everything else every U.S. President since Harry S Truman did to win the Cold War -- and broke their backs without firing a single (direct) shot.

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 7:09 PM | Report abuse

JakeD,
Now I wonder why that would happen? Think it could be through some fault of your own, or are you one of the unfairly persecuted types?

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 7:08 PM | Report abuse

JakeD, If I can quote Ronnie Raygun, "There you go again". The myth that the Cold War was won by Reagan is barely debatable. The Soviet Union was falling apart from the inside. Claiming that Reagan caused it to collapse is like saying the rooster crowing brings the dawn. Reagan's "government is the problem" conservative mantra has led us to the dysfunctional disaster we have now. Clearly, government run by evangelical right-wing ideologues is a problem. Raygun would be horrified at what has been done under the banner of conservative republicans.

Posted by: thebobbob | February 10, 2008 7:00 PM | Report abuse

bonsai5966:

I was actually leaning towards supporting Obama -- until I was banned at his wed blog -- I wish I could get back my campaign donation too.

"A nation is not run by pretty, elaborate speeches" Yes or no?

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 7:00 PM | Report abuse

thephantomblot:

How is asking Anne E. Kornblut whether she knows, for a fact, that Clinton did not call Obama "an anti-Obama remark"? As for posting first, do you know what "RSS Feed" means?

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 6:57 PM | Report abuse

renaissancemd:
Based on your lack of research on Obama, I'd challenge your self-appointed appelation of "amateur historian." Historians actually research things.

You know. They look them up! Try going to the website.

Leave it to the professionals, friend.

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 6:55 PM | Report abuse

More press for Hillary? Try following the trail of corporate money (especially big Pharma--Health Care anyone?)into her campaign coffers. She has taken more than McCain, Romney, and Huckabee combined while Obama is funded by millions of small donors.

Posted by: gmundenat | February 10, 2008 6:55 PM | Report abuse

P.S. to ancientk -- I am sure that renaissancemd will clarify, but he / she did say "in no way do I suggest that he is anything like him" as to Hitler's evil -- why, however, are you not concerned by the lack of emphasis on the issues and the seemingly hypnotic trance that people are under when it comes to Obama? You would be if such a candidate was a Republican, right? Would you at least agree with the following statement: "A nation is not run by pretty, elaborate speeches"?

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 6:54 PM | Report abuse

hahah, it's so predictable. in almost every single blog post here at the trail, the first comment is an anti-obama remark from jaked. it's like he's on a crusade or something, hitting the 'refresh' button constantly, waiting for a new post to show up so he can immediately chime in.

Posted by: thephantomblot | February 10, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

Hold on a minute -- the "politics of the last 30 years" includes 1978-1991 when the Cold War was finally won -- why exactly is that a "failure" again?

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 6:46 PM | Report abuse

Watch what's happening on the ground, not in the press, inside the beltway or on the editorial pages. The groundswell of support for Obama is coming from those who have clearly seen that the the politics of the last 30 years have failed and they want, they demand something different.
The government shouldn't shut down because of disagreements about abortion or gay rights. People concerned about the environment shouldn't be demonized as radical anti-corporate counter-culture extremists. Pointing out that Europeans might have a valid solutions to modern problems doesn't mean that you're a French-loving surrender monkey. Pointing out that government has a role in modern society doesn't make you a big-government tax and spend socialist. They're tired of the 'culture wars', they don't care if someone smoked pot in the 60's or whether a candidate got a deferment or, hid out in the National Guard or went to Vietnam. They see huge problems and no one getting organized to solve them. They're tired of the Drama, they're voting for Obama!

Posted by: thebobbob | February 10, 2008 6:42 PM | Report abuse

To renaissancemd:

Your comment refering to Obama as Hitler is so out there. This is ridiculous. Hilter used negative campaigning in Germany to get the votes he wants. He scapegoated the Jews. You don't see any of that in Obama and his character. This is really irresponsible of you. No one should be compared to Hitler unless they massacred millions of people. How would you like if someone compared you to Hitler. Jeez.

I respect your opinion about the media but you are wrong about Clinton not getting enough spotlight. I think there was a tracker somewhere on line. She has her name mentioned more than Obama throughout 2007 and up till now. So please back up your opinions with facts.

Posted by: ancientk | February 10, 2008 6:37 PM | Report abuse

For me, yes. But I'm not sure the rest of the nation was listening.

Posted by: renaissancemd | February 10, 2008 6:15 PM | Report abuse

17 debates were not enough for you, renaissancemd ; )

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Snide as usual, Anne. Wouldn't expect anything more.

Posted by: suzyqueue2u2 | February 10, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse

JakeD:
I agree with your observation. But my concern is the way the media and people are treating Obama. He is not the first black candidate to run, nor is he the first man! Can't people see that amongst Hillary's attributes she would be the first FEMALE president? Isn't that characteristic unique enough for the Democratic Party, the media and the nation to at least give her equal time? Lets have more debates, and let the people for the first time sit down and compare notes on what their platforms are. Forget woman, black, Bill and the rest of the attachments. If we do this then I would feel more comfortable with Obama. Without this I cannot get rid of the impression that something bigger is working behind the scene.

Posted by: renaissancemd | February 10, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse

In his books, Barack HUSSEIN Obama has also told the story of his drug abuse (is he still using?) and anger at whites.

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Because Democratic presidential candidate Senator Barack Obama has risen so far, so fast many voters are not as familiar with his background as they would like to be.
In his books Barack Obama has told the story of the family into which he was born, about a father from Kenya in Africa whom he barely knew, who left when Barack was age 2, and about his white American mother from Kansas who along with his father was a college student in Hawaii. By age 6 young Barack was already living in Jakarta with his mother and his Indonesian step father before moving back to Hawaii at age 10 to be raised by his maternal grandparents when his mother and her second husband divorced. His "birthright," says Barack Obama, was that he was loved and received a good education.
Over the years Barack Obama had bonding experiences with white and black relatives and with Asian family members amidst an understandable struggle to find his own identity. Through it all he developed a keen ability to understand and to resonate with people of various ethnic backgrounds. Barack Obama worked his way through the racial complexities into which he was born to graduate Magna Cum Laude from Harvard Law School and become president of the Harvard Law Review. Subsequently he served in the Illinois State Senate for 8 years before winning a 70 % landslide election to become a United States Senator in 2004.
On a personal level Barack Obama has had 46 years of experience in understanding how perceptions of ethnicity and judgments about race can divide people, and he is uniquely qualified and committed to develop a sense of unity and common purpose in America and its people. He has the background, the communication skills and the intelligence necessary to reintroduce the United States of America to the rest of the world. As President of the United States he would appropriately symbolize our great and powerful country with its two simple yet profound ideals of personal freedom and equality of opportunity.

In 1963 when Obama was just 2 years old Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous "I have a dream" speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. that included the familiar phrase of "not being judged by the color of one's skin but by the content of one's character." That speech, of course, helped prompt passage of the 1964 US Civil rights Act and the next year, King was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. If the people of America elect Barack Obama their 44th President in November of this year King's dream will have become much more than just a dream.
Some have said that Barack Obama's opposition to America initiating the Iraq war is a "fairytale" and that his position on the war has been "inconsistent." But on October 2, 2002 at the Federal Plaza in Chicago Senator Barack Obama, then an Illinois state senator, delivered these remarks:
"I stand before you as someone who is not opposed to war in all circumstances. The Civil War was one of the bloodiest in history, and yet it was only through the crucible of the sword, the sacrifice of multitudes, that we could begin to perfect this union and drive the scourge of slavery from our soil.
I Don't Oppose All Wars
I don't oppose all wars. My grandfather signed up for a war the day after Pearl Harbor was bombed, fought in Patton's army. He fought in the name of a larger freedom, part of that arsenal of democracy that triumphed over evil. I don't oppose all wars. After September 11, after witnessing the carnage and destruction, the dust and the tears, I supported this administration's pledge to hunt down and root out those who would slaughter innocents in the name of intolerance, and I would willingly take up arms myself to prevent such tragedy from happening again.
Opposed to Dumb, Rash Wars
I don't oppose all wars. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other armchair, weekend warriors in this administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne. What I am opposed to is the attempt by political hacks like Karl Rove to distract us from a rise in the uninsured, a rise in the poverty rate, a drop in the median income, to distract us from corporate scandals and a stock market that has just gone through the worst month since the Great Depression. That's what I'm opposed to. A dumb war. A rash war. A war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics.
On Saddam Hussein
Now let me be clear: I suffer no illusions about Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal man. A ruthless man. A man who butchers his own people to secure his own power.... The world, and the Iraqi people, would be better off without him. But I also know that Saddam poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States, or to his neighbors...and that in concert with the international community he can be contained until, in the way of all petty dictators, he falls away into the dustbin of history. I know that even a successful war against Iraq will require a U.S. occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences. I know that an invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East, and encourage the worst, rather than best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of al-Qaeda. I am not opposed to all wars. I'm opposed to dumb wars. So for those of us who seek a more just and secure world for our children, let us send a clear message to the president.
You Want a Fight, President Bush?
You want a fight, President Bush? Let's finish the fight with Bin Laden and al-Qaeda, through effective, coordinated intelligence, and a shutting down of the financial networks that support terrorism, and a homeland security program that involves more than color-coded warnings. You want a fight, President Bush? Let's fight to make sure that...we vigorously enforce a nonproliferation treaty, and that former enemies and current allies like Russia safeguard and ultimately eliminate their stores of nuclear material, and that nations like Pakistan and India never use the terrible weapons already in their possession, and that the arms merchants in our own country stop feeding the countless wars that rage across the globe. You want a fight, President Bush? Let's fight to make sure our so-called allies in the Middle East, the Saudis and the Egyptians, stop oppressing their own people, and suppressing dissent, and tolerating corruption and inequality, and mismanaging their economies so that their youth grow up without education, without prospects, without hope, the ready recruits of terrorist cells. You want a fight, President Bush? Let's fight to wean ourselves off Middle East oil through an energy policy that doesn't simply serve the interests of Exxon and Mobil. Those are the battles that we need to fight. Those are the battles that we willingly join. The battles against ignorance and intolerance. Corruption and greed. Poverty and despair."
Barack Obama delivered his powerful speech at the Federal Plaza in Chicago October 2, 2002 against the US beginning war in Iraq while later that same month Hillary Clinton voted for the authorization to begin US military action in Iraq. Once US troops were actually in Iraq and fighting a war, of course, it would be irresponsible for Obama to be against funding the troops. The key is that Barack Obama had the judgment to see the dumbness of the war in October 2002 and had the courage to clearly say so. Hillary Clinton did not and voted for funds authorizing the start the Iraq War. Judgment and courage are part of Barack Obama's character, and so is a belief in a united America, in its people and in its future.

The tactic of trying to characterize Obama's war position as "a fairy tale" or as "inconsistent" is typical of some politicians who will say and do virtually anything to get elected and clearly demonstrates why America so badly needs the enormous breath of fresh air Barack Obama brings to politics and can bring to the highest elective office in our great country.
Barack Obama's opponent insist that he is too young and inexperienced to be President of the United States, seemingly unaware of the fact that Theodore Roosevelt became America's President at age 42, JFK at 43, and Bill Clinton at 46. On January 20, 2009 when our next president is sworn in Barack Obama will be 47 years old.
Back in the 1960 Democratic primary election Senator John Kennedy was also told he was too young and inexperienced to become president, then by such notable members of the "old guard" as Eleanor Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Adlai Stevenson, and Lyndon Johnson. Kennedy was told to wait his turn! But, of course JFK won the 1960 Democratic primary and went on to defeat Richard Nixon in the general election despite Nixon's protest that "Kennedy is too young and inexperienced to be President." It wasn't true then about John F. Kennedy and it isn't true now about Barack Obama.
Senator Obama's opponent claims to have had "35 years of experience," but most of that was as the wife of the Governor of Arkansas and as wife of the President of the United States. Actually she has had 7 years experience as a US Senator from her adopted state of New York.
Barack Obama served 8 years in the Illinois State Senate and was elected to the US Senate in 2004 for a total of 11 years experience as an elected official responsible to voters.
Senator Obama has been in Washington D.C. long enough to know what needs to be changed, and unlike his opponent he has already started doing some changing by refusing to accept money from lobbyists and political action committees. He is proving that being beholden to such money peddlers is not necessary. He raises money for his campaign directly from the people to whom he is accountable, people like you and me.
America needs Barack Obama and America needs him now!

Posted by: bobwestafer | February 10, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

renaissancemd:

Let's assume that Obama has been winning the caucases only because the people present are afraid to be labeled "racist"
by their friends -- and he secures the nomination against McCain -- doesn't it become a self-fulfilling prophesy by that point? No self-respecting Democrat is going to vote for McCain (now in the privacy of a polling booth) once he / she voted for Obama in the caucus.

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

I am an independent and have been following and reviewing the record of every candidate in the race. I am, however, troubled by the inordinate amount of press and positive publicity Obama is getting, especially when compared to Clinton. I cannot but be frightened by the lack of emphasis on the issues and the hypnotic trance that people seem to be under when it comes to Obama. As an amateur historian I am taken back, and in no way do I suggest that he is anything like him, to Hitler's mesmerizing speeches and the way the crowd looks at him with glazed eyes. Are they even listening to what he is saying? I know I am. As an immigrant I can say that in no way I am a racist, but could it be that he has been winning the caucases because the people present are afraid to be labeled racist by their friends? A nation is not run by pretty, elaborate speeches. It takes intelligence, guts and experience. I believe all the candidates qualify with this description but we are ignoring Hillary's message and plan for the nation. Let's give Hillary an equal share of publicity and attention that Obama has been getting in abundance!

Posted by: renaissancemd | February 10, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Post is so biased against Hillary Clinton it is amazing. Sometimes I think I am reading the Washington Times.

Posted by: mzaver | February 10, 2008 5:36 PM | Report abuse

gmundenat Nice.....I am engineer....Not a salesman.....and have taken the time to examine most of what is visable on Hillary...and bill and have found that she is covert with her congressional filing statement and offshore accounts...Therefore cannot be trusted MY Vote and MONEY goes to Obama. Not to payoff her debts

Posted by: nrjordan | February 10, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Hillary really believes the nomination is her due. As such, she is very deep in denial and incapable of grace in defeat. Look for her to get very, very nasty. Superdelegates care about themselves foremost and will not deny Obama behind closed doors.--Hillary thinks they will.

Posted by: gmundenat | February 10, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Looks like Obama gets all the hype and momentum. It's hip to be on the Obama camp. Even the pollsters too often ignore the real public and keep predicting Obama more ahead than he actually is, to create the sense of momentum. But does anybody really question what and how of his advocated change? and really examine will it be good for the country's long term future? Unfortunately, many are eager to buy into inspiring talk. No wonder there are many successful salesman in this country and few engineers and scientists.
An independent supporting Hillary

Posted by: jerryh1 | February 10, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

As long as neither one of them win the nomination BEFORE Denver, I'm fine with that.

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Ready! Tested! and Loser! on Day 1

Posted by: premail | February 10, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Yes, the tried and true Guiliani method! In her world, there are no primaries/caucuses until March 4th. Don't expect her to acknowledge any losses during Feb.

Posted by: bonsai5966 | February 10, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

So, do you know that Clinton did not call Obama in a gracious gesture of concession for each of those States? I think we are getting a bit ahead of ourselves here, Anne.

If anyone else see George Stephanpolous today, wish him a happy birthday!!

Posted by: JakeD | February 10, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

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