The Politics of Joy

Hillary Clinton is a happy campaigner. She exudes joy. She has a hearty laugh.

Hillary’s joy filled politics translate into a commanding presence on the campaign trail.

The joy for Hillary comes from the confidence that all the years of fighting for progressive values have prepared her for this challenge of running for and being president for all Americans.

As anyone who has ever fought for a cause worth fighting for knows, you acquire scars, you acquire enemies. But you also acquire friends, and the scars heal leaving you a stronger person with the wisdom only real life experience can teach.

The Politics of Joy are not for everyone. Some prefer the Politics of Confusion. These sad souls confuse inexperienced foolishness with hope, capitulation with unity.

“I think it is fair to say that I believe I can bring the country together more effectively than she can,” Obama said. “I will add, by the way, that is not entirely a problem of her making. Some of those battles in the ’90s that she went through were the result of some pretty unfair attacks on the Clintons. But that history exists, and so, yes, I believe I can bring the country together in a way she cannot do. If I didn’t believe that, I wouldn’t be running.”

Watch out. The last time Obama made a claim about how having lived abroad as a 6 year old child and having Muslims in his family he would be well equipped to deal with the Islamic world American flags got burned in Pakistan. Obama also appears not to understand that it is easy to gain cooperation from opponents when you capitulate to their demands.

But Obama’s greater confusion is in not understanding that the reason why Ripublicans tore into Hillary for decades was because she was fighting for meaningful change. Obama does not understand the basic differences and interests which define Ripublicans and the putting people first politics espoused by Democrats.

Saying that Bill Clinton’s presidency was good for America, he added: “The question is, moving forward, looking towards the future, is it sufficient just to change political parties, or do we need a more fundamental change in how business is done in Washington . . .? Do we need to break out of some of the ideological battles that we fought during the ’90s that were really extensions of battles we fought since the ’60s?”

What battles does Obama wish to sound the retreat on? On what issues is Obama waving a surrender flag? Does Obama really think that Ripublicans will be satisfied with ‘split the difference’ solutions? How much is Obama willing to capitulate to Ripublicans in their quest to drive the nation further and further to the right? Does Obama really and truly think that his charms are such, recalling his ‘to know me is to love me’ silliness, that Ripublican and right wing zealots will be appeased by his soothing words?

Obama said he has become a target because Democratic rivals are determined to paint him as too inexperienced to serve as president and commander in chief. Sens. Joseph R. Biden Jr. (Del.) and Christopher J. Dodd (Conn.) have joined Clinton in questioning Obama’s experience, but he focused on Clinton’s criticism to explain why he is under attack.

“I think it’s very clear what their political strategy is,” he said of the Clinton campaign. “They want to project Senator Clinton as the seasoned, experienced hand. I don’t fault them for that. That’s the strategy they’re pursuing, and my response is that what the American people need and what the Oval Office needs right now is good judgment. Experience can be a proxy for good judgment, but it isn’t always.” [snip]

Obama said he believes that he is on the more solid ground in the foreign policy debate underway and that the back-and-forth has helped make clear the distinctions between him and other candidates, particularly Clinton.

“My sense is, either people aren’t paying careful enough attention to what I’m saying or they’re simply trying to score political points,” he said. “Or there is a substantive argument in which I’m very confident in my position and I think the American people share my position.”

Obama is clearly deluded when he thinks he has profited from his blunder, blunder, blunder. Like George Bush Obama does not seem to understand he is on the losing side of the argument. This lack of awareness is important when we consider Obama’s own words, his own standard for judging him which were enunciated in an interview with George Stephanopoulos

Stephanopoulos: That is part of the job, there is no question about it, but you know a big part of the job for president is what you would do in a crisis, the crisis you didn’t expect. And you never ever really had to deal with something like that, right?

Obama: Well, what I think is absolutely legitimate is that my political career has been on the legislative side and not on the executive branch. Now, that is true for a lot of my colleagues, who aren’t governors, and one of the things that I hope, over the course of this campaign I show, is the capacity to manage this pretty unwieldy process, um, of a political race and one of the great things about the press is they’re going to be watching very carefully…

Stephanopoulos: Every move you make.

Obama: Every move you make and to make sure that people have a sense of how I deal with adversity, how I deal with mistakes. Who do I have around me to make sure we are executing on the things that need to get done.

Using Obama’s very own measuring stick, how is Obama doing? How is Obama “managing this unwieldy process”? How is Obama dealing with mistakes? Here is one answer:

Over the course of a long campaign, a couple of foreign policy flubs can explained away. But three or four Dean-like stumbles within the course of a few weeks have just nailed Barack Obama, early in the campaign, into a box he’ll be hard pressed to bust out of.

To recap: first he said he’d meet with the world’s worst dictators in his first year, no preconditions. And what was particularly puzzling to me: Though he pretty clearly lost the exchange to Sen. Clinton, he seemed to think he won it — and then pressed his case for a solid week. (I actually think he got trapped in a meta-battle, in which he was trying hard to demonstrate to donors and the public that he can fight bareknuckled with Clinton and give her a black eye. And that, in turn, would have proved he can be just as tough as her in the face of Republican general election attacks.) It didn’t work.

Then came the threat to bomb Pakistan; to me, anyway, he was correct to say this — but in the public mind, in the wake of the first misstep, it wound up looking like a candidate reactively struggling to define himself.

Then came the casual comment that we’d never use nuclear weapons along the Pakistan/Afghanistan border. This too might have been defensible, but it was followed by his “scratch that” dissembling — and a very adult taking to task by Hillary.

And now we have the latest:

a puzzling statement that in Afghanistan, our military is “just” bombing villages and killing civilians. Well, yes, it may be partially true — but you cannot win an argument when you start out by appearing to malign U.S. troops.

I had pretty high hopes for Obama. But these unforced errors are getting painful. An existing vulnerability is suddenly much more pronounced. And if you were scripting this, you could hardly make Hillary look more Presidential with less effort of her own.

By his own standards – How is Obama doing? Miserably.


So far, only the Republican National Committee is taking issue with Obama’s statement that US forces need to be do doing more than “just air-raiding villages and killing civilians” in Afghanistan. But even if Obama’s right on the policy — and the fact that no Democrats are taking him on over his latest comments suggest that at least they think he is — this is at least the third time in recent weeks that his locution on foreign policy is drawing shrugs.

Obama’s campaign has apparently decided to paint Hillary as a polarizing figure in order to rescue his miserable and failing desperate campaign. Before worrying about Hillary’s polarizing effect, Obama should worry about his own. American voters still do not know who Obama is despite the Vibe, GQ and other magazine covers he favors.

The Obama campaign has produced a second ad targeted to a minority audience stressing his Christianity, on Tuesday releasing a Spanish language radio spot to run in Nevada, one of the early presidential vote states. Why the emphasis on Obama’s Christianity? Is there a worry that in some precincts there is confusion about his faith because of the Islamic heritage of his father and stepfather?

The Nevada Spanish language spot: A narrator says, “Let us tell you Barack Obama is a Christian man committed to our community, his wife and his daughters,” according to the English translation provided by the Obama campaign.

A July ad aimed at African Americans in South Carolina, another early primary state: A narrator says, “It’s Barack Obama time. A Christian family man, community organizer, civil rights lawyer, courageous legislator, and U.S. senator who’s told the truth as a soldier for justice.”

This stress on Obama’s religion leads me to surmise that there is some concern within the campaign that is answered by highlighting Obama’s Christian faith, that it is part of his biography that needs bolstering. [snip]

Early on in the campaign I thought Obama — his middle name is Hussein — cleared up questions, triggered by the Islamic heritage of his father and stepfather, about whether he was raised a Muslim. Obama was not raised a Muslim. His campaign, effectively I thought discredited stories he attended a madrassa while a youngster in Jakarta, Indonesia. He did not.

Obama is not the only sad campaign having trouble in Nevada and elsewhere while attacking Hillary.

Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards is moving staff out of Nevada to focus on other early voting states, a reflection of the uncertainty about the prominence of the first Western contest and Edwards’ tight resources. [snip]

Democratic Senate Leader Harry Reid of Nevada responded with a warning: “Any candidate who chooses to ignore Nevada and its rich diversity does so at their own peril.”

The Democratic National Committee gave Nevada a new early role in the presidential nominating process, allowing it to schedule its caucus on Jan. 19, between the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary. But New Hampshire has said it may go earlier than the Jan. 22 date set by the DNC to maintain its historic role in choosing the nominee, possibly moving Nevada back in the voting order.

The most recent Nevada poll, taken in late June by Mason-Dixon, showed Edwards in third place with 12 percent of the vote. New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton was leading with 39 percent, followed by Illinois Sen. Barack Obama with 17 percent.

Miserable campaigns do miserable things.

Joyful campaigns win.


76 thoughts on “The Politics of Joy

  1. The Hillary campaign paid back today Obama calling Hillary “Bush/Cheney lite”.

    Check this out, next to last paragraph – Phil Singer hits back:

    WASHINGTON (CNN) – He may plan to take a break from presidential politics, but soon-to-be ex-White House aide Karl Rove isn’t holding back when it comes to his critique of Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton.

    On conservative talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh’s show Wednesday, Rove predicted the New York Democrat would win her party’s nomination but said she was “fatally flawed” and would ultimately lose the race for the White House.

    “There is no frontrunner who has entered the primary season with negatives as high as she has in the history of modern polling,” said Rove, who announced Tuesday he was resigning his White House post.

    “She is going into the general election, depending on what poll you look at, with high forties on the negative side and just below that on the positive side. There is nobody who has ever won the presidency who has started out in that position,” the man also known as “Bush’s brain” added.

    Rove also fired back at Clinton’s recent campaign ad in which the former First Lady states, “If you’re a family that is struggling and you don’t have health care, you are invisible to this president.”

    “I am a little surprised she jumped out there and made such an accusation when she has a record so spotty and poor on health care issues,” he said.

    Phil Singer, a Clinton spokesman, brushed aside Rove’s critique of her favorability numbers, saying, “It sounds like Karl Rove is writing Sen. Obama’s talking points.”

    “The reality is that as the campaign now gets under way, Sen. Clinton’s ratings are improving because Americans are seeing that she has the strength and experience to deliver change,” he added.

  2. I think this repeated horsepuckey of Hillary not being warm and personable is crap. She’s funny, smart, self-deprecating and also tough. What the hell is wrong with that? The meme out there is just wrong. I don’t accept the argument that Edwards or Obama are more personable or warmer. They are both annoying as hell. Maybe it goes back to the fact that she’s a woman running for President, and how dare she?

  3. kitforhill, She is slowly changing that perception, but I’m with you; I never could understand it in the first place.

    BTW, Karl Rove is a classic bullshitter. He’s trying to convince the Dittoheads HRC will lose; if he told them otherwise, they’d all have heart attacks, lol. He’s also hoping his “critique” convinces some Dems to buy the “she’s too polarizing” argument and switch to Obama or someone else.

    His statement about her negatives being too high to win is pointless because there’s been no candidate in Hillary’s situation before. My goodness, if she’s tied or leading Rudy while having unfavorables that are twice his, imagine what’ll happen when his negatives start catching up to hers – and they will, should he get the nomination.

    The first rule of politics is, you don’t underestimate your opponent. Repubs who think HRC will be easy to beat are making an enormous mistake.

  4. I’m very uncomfortable with this sites reference to any Muslim herritage on Obama’s part. Why should that matter? I think you should delete that stuff.

  5. Did any of you see Chris Matthews ten minutes ago?
    He speculated that organized labor was responsible
    for the increase number of recalls of Chinese made
    products imported to America. I can’t believe the
    unchallenged nonsense of the idiot. I used to have
    respect for him but he is becoming a disgrace. I’m
    sure Mattle can’t blame american labor for leaded paint
    supplied in China. He is crazy. I passed this tip
    onto the Hub. I hope they take advantage of this

  6. From Staff to MJ:

    The quote is from a Chicago Sun-Times article. The context is Obama, according to the Sun-Times, promoting himself as a Christian in his advertisments in order to combat the ‘secret’ Muslim stuff. The reporter, Lynn Sweet, wrote “His campaign, effectively I thought discredited stories he attended a madrassa while a youngster in Jakarta, Indonesia. He did not.” We are not sure that this is necessarily a correct analysis. It is very possible that Obama is trying to somehow appeal to the African-American religious establishment or to religious African-American voters by tying himself to the powerful African-American church network.

    The very relevant point is that Obama has plenty of image problems of his own to solve before commenting on the “polarizing” effects of others. This is all part of the campaign. The fact that Obama is African-American is relevant too. We have published several articles on Obama’s race and the likelihood of election of an African-American to the presidency. Harold Ford thought America had become a post-racial society that would elect him. Ford was disappointed.

    Hillary as a woman is stereotyped as calculating and cold whereas a man would not be tarred with such words. It is unfair, but we have to deal with it.

    John Edwards has been making the case, subtly and not so subtly, that he is the most “electable”. What Edwards, translated, is saying is “Hey, I’m a southern white male in a country that has elected many southern white males.” We advised his campaign in a post that that was the niche he should have been appealing to from the beginning. A bit too late Edwards finally figured out what his campaign strategy should have been.

    Like it or not, gender and race are huge factors in this race. So is religion. So is the perception of the candidates. Obama has enough to overcome as an African-American male in a country that still has a big heritage of racism to overcome. The Ripublicans know how they will go at him. They will play the muslim card. That Obama has not put that untrue rumor to rest is a big story in this election. Fox News has already done the Osama/Obama supposed misspelling. Many Ripublicans use Obama’s middle name as much as possible.

    You are right. This stuff is all very uncomfortable. It would be great if Hillary being a woman was merely a a side factor to be celebrated along with the fact that she is simply the best, most experienced, best prepared, ready candidate to be president. But Hillary is a woman and there are prejudices still to be overcome in the gender battle for equality. It would be great if we could merely celebrate Obama as an African-American male running for president who happens to be inexperienced, a bungler and not ready for prime time. But race is still a big factor. If Colin Powell were running, experience would not be an issue (being a Ripublican and the U.N. Iraq war would be a problem).

    Things are going to get much uglier in the next several months. We suspect right after Labor Day, the brass knuckles appear.

  7. Kegs, Matthews lost all decency a long time ago. The unions at MSNBC should demand an apology and boycott him.

    Kostner, the Hillary Is Cool article is, well, cool. Bobby Kennedy always looked sharp and crisp, no matter the weather or the time of day. Bobby had a secret. He changed his white shirt several times a day so he always appeared fresh and crisp. Bobby had several clean white shirts delivered to his office every day. Smart man.

  8. Admin, I doubt very seriously if the even knew what was
    said. It needs to get to union involved in manufacturing
    to the point. Any suggestions? You can email offline.

  9. MSNBC…owned by General Electric(GE)….Start a movement against GE! Some of it’s companies have unions.

    And GE also does big business in China….
    All about self interest here!

  10. mj Says:

    August 15th, 2007 at 5:27 pm
    I’m very uncomfortable with this sites reference to any Muslim herritage on Obama’s part. Why should that matter? I think you should delete that stuff.
    The reference to Obama’s Islamic heritage is fair. This site did not insinuate in anyway that being a Muslim or coming from that heritage is bad in anyway. All they suggested is the need for Obama’s campaign to highlight his Christianity and the site suggested that – it seems that is a concern among Obama folks about his Islamic heritage.

    Don’t you reckon that okay to discuss people’s faith? So long as it is respectful and not demeaning or derogatory to any religion – what wrong in discussing it? We don’t have to be ultra sensitive even to mention the word Muslim. In fact that is insulting that – people have to pussy-foot around that word as if it is some evil thing! Of course not!!

  11. Paula I agree. BTW it cracks me up that the daily nuts are now quoting Rove’s line on Hillary….even though they despise him. See even Rove thinks she can’t win! Whatever works I guess.

  12. Daily nuts will sleep in bed with Bush and Cheney – to get at Hillary. That is how unprincipled they are!! That’s why we call them nuts!!

  13. Chris Matthews is an irritating ignoramus creep! Just annoys the crap out of me when I see him jumping off his chair with lies and more lies. He would be best to quit Hardball and go work for Fox News!! He will beat them again in being the misinformer of this year as well!!

  14. Secret Says:

    August 15th, 2007 at 6:59 pm
    Were you offended when people spoke about John Kerry’s catholic background?

    Yes, when they talked in this sort of tone. I’d rather this site spend a little more time promoting Hillary and a little less time disparaging others.

  15. Mj,
    Sorry I didn’t get the tone. I thought it was a straight forward discussion of his perceived weakness. Not that we are disparaging him. By the way what is desparaging in being a Muslim? Is there something wrong in being a Muslim? NO!! Who says that???

  16. But I agree with you that we are a community that promotes Hillary – part of that is to look at her opponents and see their perceived weaknesses. Not that we are going to use that – but just observe!!

  17. MJ,

    I remember you asking about why Hillary hasn’t announced her Health care plan yet.

    I don’t know why. But I thought that was a clever move. Because, look at Obama – he announced his plan and Edwards is hitting him that his plan leaves 16 million people uninsured. In Edwards plan he raises taxes left right and center and that may freak out people who are more to the center.

    Hillary has said before that unlike Edwards or Obama – she is not willing to throw more money into a broken system. The first thing she would do is to fix the system. No point throwing good money after bad.

    So – she certainly has solid plans – but she is politically shrewd not to expose herself to be attacked.

    I am not sure if that answers you question. But, that is what I can come up with as to why she hasn’t announced any detailed plan yet!!

  18. more blunders from Obama in NH:

    Scott Parmelee, a pharmaceutical salesman from Nashua, called Obama’s criticism as a state senator prior to the invasion of Iraq “prophetic” and asked how long the American military would remain there.

    Obama pledged to engage China and Saudi Arabia in supporting a permanent, peaceful political solution in post-war Iraq and communicate with sectarian factions in that country.

    “What we need to do is send a clearer message that we are not going to be there forever, we aren’t going to have permanent bases, but we are willing to work with you,” Obama said.

    Parmalee said China and Saudi Arabia would never cooperate with the U.S.

    “It doesn’t sound like a plan to me. I don’t think that talking to other dictators is going to amount to much,” Parmalee said after the 55-minute, town hall-style meeting at the park next to his Merrit Parkway campaign headquarters.

    Parmalee is a Republican, but Isaiah Artsy, whose 17-year-old son, Shane, is volunteering on the Obama campaign, also said he felt let down by talk of the necessary “carrots and sticks” in dealing with volatile Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

    Obama said Iran can’t be allowed to develop nuclear weapons, but the Bush administration’s no-talk policy fails to give Iranian leaders a graceful exit.

    “We have offered no option for how they can stand down on their nuclear weapons and save face,” Obama said.

    Artsy said he wasn’t sure if Obama would be tough enough with Iran.

    “There is something missing for me with carrots and sticks,” Artsy said.

    It does not make any sense at all to toss out ‘China’ as some sort of savior of Iraq. China has ZERO interest in Iraq mess. Obama is on rope.

  19. How on earth does China come into Iraq?? Even so – that would be a massive diplomatic blunder to elevate China in world affairs – an autocratic country with awful record for Human rights!! Obama is in a soup!!!

  20. Talk about the politics of joy, ask Hillary about her day
    at the fair.
    Clinton’s no stranger to state fair food

    August 15, 2007

    The corndog was Hillary Clinton’s favorite state fair food when she was a governor’s wife in Arkansas.

    The sausage sandwich, a revered favorite among Upstate New Yorkers, proved pivotal to her Senate race. She chowed on one – actually two – at at the New York State Fair after her Republican opponent famously declined a taste of the regional delicacy.

    The pork chop got the cameras flashing at the Iowa State Fair this afternoon.

    “Oh, pork chops are huge,” Clinton explained to a reporter as she strolled the fairgrounds.

    Asked if eating a pork sandwich could help boost her bid for president of the United States the way her vigor for the sausage sandwich won over some fairgoers in New York, Clinton said: “I can only hope my opponents turn it down!”

    When she arrived at the fairgrounds at 11:45 a.m., Clinton’s first stop was The Des Moines Register’s soapbox, where she told a crowd of about 500 that she’d heard Iowa’s fair was the best in the country.

    “I’m going to do my own investigation,” she said. “I’m going to eat my way around the fair.”

    Then she made a path through the air-conditioned Varied Industries building, where she greeted people at the Iowa Democratic Party’s booth.

    Clinton appeared to be enjoying herself. She sipped a lemonade, and licked a Wonder Bar made of chocolate- and nut-dipped ice cream. “I’ve got something on a stick,” she said. “I’m feeling very good.”

    She squeezed the wringer on a PVA mop when a woman tried to sell her one, and paused to thank a salesman for the “The Rodman Nibbler” drill bit who called out a welcome to Iowa. “Say hello to Patty and Chet for me!” she trilled as she passed the booth for Iowa Gov. Chet Culver and Lt. Gov. Patty Judge.

    Clinton squinted at an elaborate white quilt created by Vicki Swensen of Nevada and asked, “How’s this one done?”

    When she bellied up to an Applishus booth, 15-year-old employee Scott Monroe of Johnston, suddenly had eight photographers at his elbows. When the $3 bowl of caramel apples was offered “on the house,” a Clinton staffer shook her head, handed Monroe a $20 and told the teen to keep the change.

    The breathlessness of the crowds seemed to be evidence of her star power.

    “Go Hillary! I’m totally behind you!” Judy O’Brien of Ames told the candidate as she walked by.

    Julie Meyer of Wayland staked out a spot an hour and 15 minutes ahead of Clinton’s scheduled soapbox appearance. “I think she can do it,” Meyer said of a Clinton presidency.

    Roger Robb of Clive, a Republican, angled for a shot with his camera phone.

    “I’m not voting for her, but I thought it’d be fun to get a picture,” he said.

    Gary McConnell of Bloomfield told someone on his cell phone: “I was the third person to shake her hand when she got out of the car!” Asked about his excitement, McConnell, a member of the fair board of directors and a registered Democrat, looked embarrassed.

    He said: “I don’t have any comment at this time.”

    As 5-year-old Taylor Manusos’ family, all from Grimes, stared at the candidate on the
    Grand Concourse, the girl piped up: “Hi, Hillary Clinton!”

    And Clinton hurried over to hug the petite girl, who wore a T-shirt that said “Cornfed.”

    Clinton’s appearance caught some fairgoers by surprise, including Cindy and Miles Wellman of Houghton, who came to show a calf in a 4-H competition and to see 13-year-old Haley Wellman’s blue-ribbon-winning pillow.

    “Oh my God!” Cindy Wellman said when her husband, a Republican, pointed out the candidate walking through the Varied Industries building with a mob of videocameras around her.

    The family hustled past the Iowa State Cyclones booth and the Sport Court booth and squeezed in between a herd of orange Kubota tractors to get a look at the candidate. Miles Wellman made it very clear he’s not a fan of her politics, but Cindy Wellman shrugged and said she’s still undecided.

    Not everyone was impressed at the sight of Clinton.

    “I don’t think we need a woman president,”said John Rubison, of Sheldina, Mo., as he kept his distance from the swarm of people around Clinton. “I don’t think the nation’s ready.”

    Novi Martin of Lake Panorama got a big laugh from Clinton when Martin, an 81-year-old Republican, asked the Democratic candidate to sign her straw poll ticket.

    “This is a first,” Clinton said, scrawling with a blue marker.

    Martin said she has no intention of voting for Clinton, but will use the signed ticket to goad a friend in her church choir who is a staunch Republican.

    Sandy Winkel of Pella got a little peeved when a man in khakis grabbed her and pulled her back in his effort to reach Clinton. Winkel pushed back – before she saw the earpiece dangling from his ear that identified him as a Secret Service agent.

    Winkel, an independent who’s not sure who’s she’s voting for, wasn’t apologetic. “I thought, this is nuts,” she said about the swarm hurrying after Clinton.

    After checking out the butter cow and butter Harry Potter, Clinton’s last stop was the Iowa Pork Producers Association tent. She donned a blue denim apron with the words “The other white meat” on it, and flipped pork burgers with former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack and his wife, Christie.

    A crowd of more than 30 photographers from around the world stood in a flower bed next to a flaming grill recording each moment.

    The beef producers’ booth went ignored. All the politicians go for pork, said Dana “Spanky” Wanken, a Clarion farmer on the pork tent committee.

    “It’s a tradition,” Wanken said. “This is our 27th year. This is the place to be.”

    Just after 2 p.m., Clinton climbed into a squad car-led sport-utility vehicle bound for an AFL-CIO event in Waterloo.

  21. Someone should ask Obama who is his Foreign Policy advisor? And ask him to name names. Obama’s propensity for making inflammatory statements about foreign countries is dubious. Where does he get these lame brain proposals?

    “Phil Singer, a Clinton spokesman, brushed aside Rove’s critique of her favorability numbers, saying, “It sounds like Karl Rove is writing Sen. Obama’s talking points.”

    Oh, yeah. They e-mail the ‘talking point’ of the day to their supporters.

    Mrs. S.

  22. Hey, Everyone:

    I’ve been incredibly busy the last few days, but I wanted to check in, say hi, and yell,

    GO HILLARY!!!!!

  23. Dan Balz’s Take
    A Conversation With Obama

    Part way through our conversation at a recreation center in Keene, N.H., on Monday afternoon, I asked Barack Obama to reflect on what three weeks as the target of attack from his opponents had done to him. I suggested that, while he may not have anticipated the criticism, he had taken to the conflict with considerable enthusiasm.

    “I’ve enjoyed it,” he said, flashing a big smile. The debate, he added, has helped to sharpen the contrast “between myself and some of the other candidates in this race.”

    “Particularly Senator Clinton?” I asked.

    “Particularly Senator Clinton,” he replied. “And that’s hopefully what a good campaign is all about.”

    Throughout the 40-minute session, Obama was clearly focused on Clinton, and, it seemed, eager to sharpen his differences with her. At no time did he launch an attack on the Democratic front-runner. He was careful in his choice of words and generally respectful of his leading rival. Still, he was anything but timid about pointing out areas of disagreement and projected self-confidence in arguing that he can do politically what Clinton may be incapable of doing.

    The case he began to lay out — that Clinton is too polarizing to bring an end to an era of partisan bickering and legislative gridlock in Washington — will not be easy for him to prosecute. The more explicit he makes that argument, the more he risks undermining his own message of hope and inspiration — and his own image as a different kind of politician.

    But the issue he has raised is at the root of the choice voters in the Democratic primaries will have to make. That choice has been implicit since the Obama and Clinton entered the presidential race last winter and now, apparently, Obama will seek to make it the front-and-center issue during what he described as the four-month sprint from Labor Day to the Iowa caucuses.

    During the interview, I asked Obama whether he was suggesting that Clinton couldn’t break out of the partisan gridlock.

    “Look, why don’t I put it this way,” he responded. “When I thought about running, one of the things I asked myself is, what is it that I might be able to do that no other candidate could do, and one of the things I think I can do is break – I think I can redraw the political map. I think I can break out of the 50-plus-one model of electioneering that we’ve become so accustomed to in presidential politics…”

    There then followed some humorous jousting over Clinton’s polarizing image, which I introduced into the conversation. Obama at first sought to throw it back. “You just made the point… Go ahead and write the story…You’re looking at the same poll numbers I am,” he said with a laugh.

    But when I reminded him that he had raised the idea a few minutes earlier by suggesting that he was uniquely positioned to break out of the current cycle of partisan warfare, he turned serious. “Yes,” he said, “I believe I can bring the country together in a way she cannot do.”

    It was telling and not surprising that the Clinton campaign chose to respond to Obama’s comments by labeling them an attack. The message is that inspirational candidates who attack their opponents are hypocrites.

    The more Clinton’s team can make Obama seem an ordinary politician, the less his appeal as someone who can change the culture of politics that so many Americans find repugnant.

    Obama may recognize all those potential problems, but he is in the race to win. To do that, he must get past Clinton. What has compounded Obama’s candidacy is Clinton’s performance on the campaign trail.

    The latest example of why Obama’s task is difficult is playing on television screens in Iowa — Clinton’s first ad. What is striking is the combination of message and demeanor.

    Clinton is polarizing not only because of the baggage she carries from the battles during her husband’s administration, but also because she can sound polarizing — as she has at times along the campaign trail and in some candidate forums. Before Democratic audiences, she can be withering in her attacks on the President Bush and Republicans and strident in her language.

    The Clinton seen on screens in Iowa is far calmer. She has a tough message — that Bush has ignored the plight of the middle class — but also one likely to resonate with Democratic audiences. She delivers it not with a hard edge or harsh tone but with a softer voice. Even some rival strategists acknowledge the ad’s potential power to attract support for her candidacy.

    Clinton remains the candidate to beat on the Democratic side, but a comment Obama made during the interview provides a small insight into his own sense of possibility about his prospects. “My race for the U.S. Senate,” he said, “was much more improbable than my race now for the presidency.”

    He measures that in the fact that, despite a short resume in national politics, he is in second place in the national polls, competitive in the early states, has raised more money than the Clinton fundraising machine and has far more donors than any other candidate.

    Come Labor Day, the race will intensify. Obama will be the target of more attacks. But he gave every indication on Monday afternoon that he is eager to take his case to the voters and to make the choices more explicit than he has in the past. What has been a fascinating Democratic campaign promises to become even more compelling in the days ahead.

    –Dan Balz

  24. Some have suggested that the Rove is attacking Hillary because he wants her to win the primary, because she will be easier to beat in the GE than Obama. Nothing could be further from the truth. The truth is he has been fixated on Hillary for years, so much so that 8 minutes after the 2004 election he sent an email to Ripublican operatives across the country saying “what are we going to do about her?” The reason he is attacking her is because she is the strongest candidate, the best leader in either party, and what praytell is a turd blossom to do when his friend Bush is attacked and he is no longer there to defend him? There is no evidence that he is interested in OB or Edwards unless he really is writing OB’s talking points.

  25. I can understand how China could be a player in a diplomatic solution to the Iraq problem. They need oil for their growing economy, they have a sweetheart relationship with Iran, and are therefore in a position of influence. If the Middle East implodes, their economy would tank and jeopardize the continuity of communist rule. They are comfortable sitting out the war as long as they can but they have a concomittant interest in stability. That said, they do not all speak with one voice, and typically the most anti-American faction is the PLA, ergo it is highly problematic for OB to get into these hypothetical discussions. He just doesn’t learn . .

  26. Wbboei,
    The point is – China will not get involved in Iraq no matter what. Even if BO goes and begs them as part of his “Fresh ideas”.

  27. Wbboei,

    Believe me, it’s so naive and laughable to think China will have the appetite to jump into this Iraq mess no matter how hungry they are for oil.

    He did not mention Russia, NATO countries but just randomly tossed out a ‘China’, It’s bizarre.

    Richard Clark is a crook IMHO. I saw his interviews in the past, and did not find him quite credible. He painted himself as some sort of O.B. expert, I simply believe many of his stories were pure fantasies.

  28. Kostner,
    BO must be exiled from USA – this guy will derail the country!
    If we want USA to become “a blast from the past” then vote for Obama. This guy if elected will write the epitaph of America!!!
    How can anyone running for Presidency have such moronic foreign plans?
    As Kostner says where is NATO? Where are our allies in his Foreign policy! When you are in a whole stop digging but to the delight of Hillary supporters Obama just cannot stop digging deeper and deeper!

  29. Kegs,
    As Kostner says no country that is sane will jump into Iraq – no matter how much the thrist for oil is! I mean think of the expense one has to bear if you are in Iraq? Is oil that expensive. Besides India and China are already investing heavily in Central Asia [oil rich], Burma, Africa and Russia!!! No need to go to Iraq.
    Only a Moron like Bush will go in. Now Obama has joined that gang.

    “Fools rush in where angels fear to tread” – That is Iraq

  30. America is half way there already of becoming a blast from the past – because of Bush – Obama seems too eagar to finish the task that Bush started!

  31. Obama mouthpiece huffton has the following:
    Obama: Don’t just blame Bush(blame democrats as well!)

    This guy is on rope.
    CEDAR FALLS, Iowa — Not all the nation’s ills can be blamed on President Bush, Democratic candidate Barack Obama said Wednesday as he called on Americans to change the nature of politics and institute more openness in government.

    “Part of the problem here is not just George Bush and the White House,” Obama told a crowd of hundreds gathered at a park in Cedar Falls. “We can’t just change political parties and continue to do the same kind of things we’ve been doing. We can’t just go about business as usual and think it’s going to turn out differently.”

  32. Hillary mingles with black journalists. Looks like she has won them over!

    Steve Penn column: Impressions of Hillary Clinton
    She doesn’t favor reparations for the enslavement of blacks in America. Yet she wouldn’t shy away from resuming a dialogue on race if elected president of the United States.

    Also, she enjoys her morning cup of coffee with just a touch of cream.

    Those are the kinds of things you’ll learn about Sen. Hillary Clinton, the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, if you’re around her for a few hours.

    Last Thursday, Clinton gave a short speech before taking questions from the National Association of Black Journalists at its annual convention in Las Vegas. Later in the day, she took questions in a closed-door session with The Trotter Group, a collection of black columnists from across the country.

    Questions covered every topic imaginable, and the different facets of Clinton were on display. The feisty side manifested itself at the full NABJ session when she told a grandstanding reporter to become more educated rather than waste her time asking a rhetorical question.

    At the closed-door session we saw the consistent Clinton, digging in deep when it came to a question concerning her criticism of Sen. Barack Obama’s willingness to meet with leaders of rogue nations. Clinton has criticized Obama for his statement, calling him “naive.”

    “You don’t promise a personal meeting without preconditions,” Clinton told The Trotter Group. “You have to lay the groundwork. You can’t give away for nothing the biggest bargaining chip we have, which is a meeting with our president. What we have to do is to get back to robust diplomacy.”

    Then there was Clinton the diplomat. She made it clear that her idea of foreign diplomacy is closer to Obama’s than that of the Bush administration’s.

    “Bush and Cheney have been equal opportunity insulters,” Clinton said. “They have refused any kind of engagement at lower levels with countries we have had disagreements with.”

    She revealed her sense of humor as well as her comfort level with black folks when she was asked about her use of a black dialect during a speech at an African-American church in the South.

    “To some extent, I got criticized for being true to what I was trying to say by using a spiritual hymn to make my point,” Clinton told The Trotter Group. “Secondly, I did grow up all those years in Arkansas. And I’m in this interracial marriage.”

    The quip earned Clinton a roomful of laughter. The joke was a reference to author Toni Morrison’s description of Bill Clinton as “the first black president.”

    “I do sort of slip into it from time to time,” Sen. Clinton said. “I’m not trying to do anything. I do find myself dropping g’s and talking with the people who are there.”

    Despite the criticism, Clinton wouldn’t rule out doing it again.

    “If I’m caught up in the moment, you never know,” she said. “But I will not sing. I guarantee that is not going to happen.”

    She also showed the steadfast Clinton. No matter how tough the questioning becomes, she can’t be coaxed into saying her vote for the authorization of the war in Iraq was a mistake.

    “What I’ve said is that I voted for diplomacy and inspections,” Clinton said.

    “I have said the president misused and abused the authority he was given. My vote was not a vote for pre-emptive war.”

    As for cities across middle America grappling with infrastructure needs, Clinton made it perfectly clear that she feels our pain. The bridge collapse in Minneapolis and the failure of the levees in New Orleans point out the need for a comprehensive approach.

    “We’ve got to put some emergency money on the table,” Clinton said.

    “We’ve got to get these states and these localities to really prioritize the most serious needs they have. We’ve got to give them resources to be able to address those needs.”

    Like her husband, Clinton seemed quite at ease surrounded by a room full of inquisitive black journalists. She certainly wouldn’t have made the “interracial marriage” remark without feeling relaxed. Disarming cracks like that can either backfire or become effective in bonding. This one was effective.

    After being around her for a couple of hours, a few things became crystal clear:

    She can be just as effective while on defense as on offense. She’s gradually losing the cold, calculated moniker. And like many Americans, she’s a bit more relaxed after her morning cup of coffee.

  33. Well, I am no expert, but I can say this…I have made such wonderful friends in the last week with the HILLARY campaign and we all have a blast!!!! This whole politics thing is a joy. Hillary is definitely worth fighting for.

  34. ADMIN:

    I did go to my PO and get your WONDERFUL HILLARYIS44 button!!!!! I have it on my doggie right now on his collar (he can spread the message in a less threatening way than I). But I intend to wear it whenever its appropriate. BTW, I would just love to share with this group the adorable pic I took of “TINY” my dog wearing the pin. How can I upload a pic to the comments section?

  35. Kostner, Secret: China has a strategic interest in an uninterrupted supply of oil to feed its growing economy. They depend heavily upon the middle east for that oil. If that supply is jeopardized by regionwide conflict between Sunni and Shiite states they will have an incentive to act and they will do so. OB’s guy Chavez cannot meet the totality of their needs, and neither can anyone else. Their influence would be behind the scenes, and it would be made to appear that Iran was acting on its own volition. In those circumstances, the question is not whether China would intervene but how and when they would do so. At this point that is an imponderable which is why it is naive for OB to speculate about it.

  36. Kegs, the Iowa State Fair article is a fun read. Loved how the Republican farmer’s wife let’s it be known that she has not decided who her candidate will be. She sounds like one of those stealth Republican women for Hillary voters we hear so much about.

    The male who said the country is not ready for a woman as president was interesting too. This mentality does exist even though we rarely see it so honestly expressed. Usually the demographic that thinks this way (and let’s be blunt, this mentality exists even with people who identify as liberals – as attested by the lack of popularity of Hillary at predominately older white males sites like dailykooks) is more subtle in their bigotry.

    The article also shows how very happy many voters are with Hillary and how popular she is – even though those we refer to as “bubble people” persist in spreading the myth that “I don’t know anybody who is voting for Hillary.” Lot’s of people really like Hillary and really support Hillary. Nice to see them given a little space in Big Media.

    Kostner – that article by Dan Balz is nauseating. It’s clear he is about to go very ugly on Hillary. This Sunday’s debate is going to be a doozy.

    Sandy1938 – to post a picture the picture has to be on the internets somewhere. Most people use a Flickr account or a similar photography storage account. The full url address for the picture location then has to be coded. The code starts with a “lesser than” symbol then “img” then a space, then “src” then an equal sign then the location url followed up with a slash and a “greater than” sign. It should look like this (minus that first space before “img” which we placed so you could read the code):

    < img src=the location url for the photograph/>

    This is a bit complicated. Try and see if it works. If there is a problem we will try to edit the code to get it to work. If things get really bad try sending the photo to admin at and we will upload it to where you want the photo placed. Canines are great political ambassadors. Wonder when Hillary will bring Seamus to the campaign trail.

  37. More on a discussion we had earlier. Obama needs to stop giving advice regarding Hillary and start taking care of his monumental problems. From CBS news:

    “Obama may have additional hurdles to clear with some voters because of his ethnicity and his name.

    Thirty-eight percent think Obama’s name will be a problem for many voters, while 58 percent think it won’t be. One in 10 say Obama’s name reminds them of Osama bin Laden or associate the name with terrorism. And 7 percent think, incorrectly, that Obama is a Muslim.

    Some voters say Obama’s race may be an obstacle to his electability. Eighteen percent of those who doubt his electability cite Obama’s race as the reason he couldn’t win. Even more, 37 percent, mention his lack of experience.

    However, Clinton’s gender is also working against her: 37 percent of voters who think she can’t win say it’s because she’s a woman; another 25 percent say it’s because people dislike her or her husband. “

  38. Kostner- you are right. Hillary has a great meeting with the black journalists. I read the article you posted and watched the u-tube video. They are a fine group of Americans, concerned as we all are for the future of our country and their appreciation for Hillary was reciprocal.

  39. Rove also promised to knock Hillary out of her Senate Seat in 2006 (she was re-elected with an 87% plurality). He has some weird fixation on Hillary, which she called him on during her Senate campaign. He’s a pathological liar who should be locked up on Guantanamo Bay.

    Clintons ‘negatives’ are positives. Her reputation as a total badass is based on her standing up to the Radical Right–the same Radical Right that outfought Al Gore to steal the Presidency, and made sliced salami out of John Kerry. As for polarizing – yes, she drives the Radical Right and the Radical Left crazy while she builds support in the vital dynamic center.

  40. Remember Rove also kept insisting, contrary to all the polling which contradicted him, that Ripublicans would keep control of both houses of congress in 2006. Rove said he had “the” math.

    If standing up for progressive values = polarizing. We like.

  41. Sandy,
    That’s a very clever idea to let your dogs spread Hillary message for you. Guess what – I am going to do the same. My dogs are loved and adored so – I will do that!! I have 6 of them:)

  42. the new cbs news poll and internals look SWEET!!! now where’s that obama surge we have been hearing was suppose to happen by now? cricket noise huh?

  43. terrondt,
    Remember Obama surge is to happen after the labour day:) so, let’s wait for the magic to begin!

  44. thanks admin, i just saw hillary’s interview with andrea mitchell with her shadow nurse for a day. it was a great interview. i loved the good come back to karl rove and backstabbing dems. ain’t hillary a hottie also.LOL. let me stop while im ahead before the wife gets me for that!!! any way good morning hillfans. just my 2 cents worth after a night at work.

  45. yeah secret, even then they will say “wait until after new years, then “wait until feb 4th, ect… they will raise the bar until hillary is elected and still they will make excuses after she takes office.

  46. yeah secret, 7 minutes. admin has the link above saying “she has a hearty laugh” watch the interview yourself and see.

  47. On sale today;

    Finally, a book about Obama that he didn’t write HIMSELF! This book should prove to deflate the Senator’s image a little bit more.

    Obama, From Promise to Power

    “The biography of America’s hottest political superstar—Barack Obama—from a journalist who has been covering Obama and his career since his successful run for U.S. Senate

    Barack Obama’s meteoric rise from Hawaii high schooler to exemplary Harvard Law School student to well-groomed politico is the stuff of legend, a political story that has captured the attention of virtually every American. Since his headline-grabbing speech at the Democratic National Convention in 2004, Obama has come to represent the promise of unity among groups of all types—blacks and whites; Democrats, Republicans, and moderates; the young and the old; the upper, middle, and lower classes. In this first-of-a-kind, groundbreaking biography, veteran journalist and Obama chronicler David Mendell gives an in-depth, comprehensive portrait of the boy named Barry who took inspiration from his hardworking parents and became the eloquent, suave Obama—a man whose last name has become a catchphrase for hope in a politically jaded society desperate for a new star.

    Mendell has covered Obama since the beginning of Obama’s campaign for the Senate and as a result enjoys far-reaching access to the new senator. His research includes exclusive interviews with Obama’s closest aides, mentors, political adversaries, and family—most notably his extremely charismatic wife, Michelle. Mendell reveals the surprising, cutthroat campaign tactics sanctioned by Obama—who has steeped his image and reputation with the ideals of clean politics and good government—to win his Senate seat by employing some of the most ruthless operatives in the business.

    Eye-opening, well researched, and compulsively readable, Obama: From Promise to Power is a necessary look at the evolution of a politician from public servant to candidate-savior—a politician who has experienced fame, adulation, and criticism in equal parts and on a greater scale than the public eye has seen in quite some time.”

    Mendell is a credible source, very telegenic and is sure to be all over the political airwaves for at least the next couple of weeks.

  48. Canaan, Hillary actually won with 67 percent of the vote in NY, but she also captured almost all the Republican upstate counties while doing it. BTW, I love your “total badass” description, lol.

    Also, what I find interesting in the CBS poll is that among the people who value new ideas as their criterion for choosing a president, Obama only leads 38-35.

  49. Why Rove Attacked Clinton
    16 Aug 2007 10:05 am

    Two Republicans close to Karl Rove said that his decision to tie his exit from the Bush White House to a series of frontal assaults on the political viability of Sen. Hillary Clinton stems in part from his conviction that she will be the Democratic nominee, as Rove said. But there’s also a bit of envy: Clinton has so successfully rehabiliated her image — she’s established her own political identity — that Rove wants to pressure Republicans to begin their character attacks on Clinton now, rather than later.

    It’s a strategy Rove employed during the 2004 re-election, when the Bush campaign decided early to cover Bush’s own negatives by portraying Sen. John Kerry as completely to lead the country during perilous times.

  50. kostner, I hope the GOP begins its attacks on Clinton now. Bring it on! That’ll only strengthen her support among Dems, at minimum, and perhaps even drive her negatives down further.

    BTW, someone needs to tell Rove that HRC isn’t John Kerry, lol. She knows how to fight back – hard.

  51. that’s right paula, i remember when when john kerry was swiftboated and what he did? sit back for weeks without hitting back hard. hillary like her husband bill will not let 10 minutes go by without a response. kerry, dukakis, and gore learned the hard way. hillary already knows.

  52. Terrondt,
    Gallup has an interesting poll advising Obama to follow Dukakis’s model to get the nomination. LOL. I do believe Obama and Dukakis share a lot of common ground. Both are out-of-touch elitists.

    A new Gallup poll found that Sen. Barack Obama has much higher support among the most educated voters while Sen. Hillary Clinton receives more support from those with a high school diploma or less.

    However, while support among educated elites may be responsible in part for Obama’s excellent fundraising, it will not necessarily translate to electoral victory. Gallup points out that in the previous three election cycles the democratic candidate receiving the most support from the most educated — Howard Dean in 2004, Bill Bradley in 2000, and Bob Kerrey in 1992 — did not go on to win the party’s nomination (despite a boost in fundraising). The last democrat to win the nomination with similar skewing in support by education was Michael Dukakis in 1988.

  53. yup kostner, every four years we get this lovable lefty liberal whom the far left elitists love but they never seem to get the nomination. watch in 2016 comes around when hillary will be completing her 2nd term. it will happen again.

  54. Just saw this post by Kevin Drum on

    “STUBBY LITTLE LEGS”?….Garance Franke-Ruta, reporting from deep in the wilds of heartland Republicanism, is trying to figure out why so many GOPers are going gaga over Fred Thompson. So she asked a “leading figure in the Iowa Republican Party,” who told her it’s because Fred is a celebrity, Fred is a real conservative, and Fred weighs more than Hillary Clinton. Seriously:

    “Can you imagine what debates are going to be like with great big Andrew Jackson-looking Fred and Hillary on her stubby little legs, stamping her feet?” Thompson, if elected, would be the tallest president ever. Republicans are not just looking for the usual John Wayne-type signifiers as they go about selecting a candidate, but thinking about who can best loom over Hillary Clinton and make her look like a shrill, small, silly little woman. Thompson’s booming voice will make her “sound like Madame Defarge.”

    If there’s any reason to support Hillary Clinton in the primaries, this is it. Contrary to this guy’s delusions, Clinton would eviscerate Fred Thompson in a debate, and maybe, just maybe, this would drive the GOP’s core jockocracy into such shrill unholy madness that the entire party would self-destruct in a stupendous display of mass hysteria. It’s worth a try, anyway.

  55. lazy fred i perdict is going to bomb in the gop debates this fall. even if he makes it in the general he will have a tough time. i watched his lackluster speeches so far and he is soooo boring and lousy. he is all hype now becuase he is not saying anything now. good actor but terrible candidate. no wonder he has a history of being lazy and having a mediocre senate record.

  56. SECRET!!!!

    6 dogs?? You must certainly have your hands full! Maybe we can all get our dogs together to attack ROVE? j/k.

    I am working on getting my pic of TINY on the Internet. I should have it up later in the day.

  57. I wanted to chime in on the BO-Muslim thing. I do not believe anyone on this site has mentioned his family members’ faith in a deragotory manner. It is, however, a real issue and for all too long many liberals have sat back and have approached race and religion from a tone of “let’s be civil and not discuss it.” I’m sorry but that is unacceptable.

    BO has real problems in the South and the Midwest because of race and religion issues. Ignoring that or omitting it from intelligent discussion is incredibly short-sighted and weak in my opinion.

    As demonstrated by Hillary’s interview in Nevada with the Black Journalists conference, she was able to bring race up and diffuse the issue thereby making it truely a non-issue for her. She confronted it while the one poster who commented on the religion issue would rather act like it doesn’t exist. And, frankly, that’s a horrible idea.

    If we do not acknowledge the existence of bias in others and its effects on each of us and our neighbrs, we can do little- no- nothing to stop its promulgation. If BO is to have any shot- if Hillary is to have any shot- if a Muslim or Asian or Hispanic child is to have any real shot at being POTUS, we (and our candidates) must be candid. Liberals have made the mistake of making a step in the right direction decades ago on the issue of bias, but for a long time they have stood still. If you don’t believe me, ask yourself how uncomfortable you were watching “Crash.” It’s almost like they think they think they accomplished their mission when all they did was put a spit shine on it.

    Now- back to a rather larger issue of BO wanting to hand off Iraq to China. JEESH. Why do I feel like this guy is going to pass the buck on eveything? And why do I sense that the US will truly become a 2nd or even 3rd rate country under his watch? Handing over an area of military and resource strategic value to a country with the world’s largest army, an insatiable need for fossil fuel and lots and lots of cash is about as dumb as gets. In fact, I deem it dumber that teh Pakistan gaff.

    Oh as for BO’s advisers-

    I do not see Richard Clark as anything more than a check writer back at the beginning of the year. The big terrorism speech was done by someone else.

    “Several of Obama’s foreign policy experts who worked on the speech, attorneys Gregg Craig, Jeh Johnson, and from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Samantha Power and Sarah Sewall, watched him deliver the speech at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington on Wednesday. The speechwriter, Ben Rhodes, recently was hired by Obama’s campaign from the center. “

  58. I can’t agree more that Hillary is a happy campaigner. 🙂

    She appeared to me to be enjoying herself during each of the dem debates that I watched. She won each of those debates with ease, with a lot of wit, and with a great deal of grace and dignity. At the same time I’m very impressed by her intelligence, her vast knowledge, and her ability to think fast on her feet. She appeared very presidential to me. As a woman, I’m SO very proud to see a female Presidential candidate up there debating, and winning! I could cry!

    As an aside, my take regarding today’s “Obama says Bush not solely to blame” news article:

    I’m all for a more open government. I believe so does Hillary.

    1) She signed the bill S1. The bill is designed to provide greater transparency in the legislative process and is commonly known as the “ethics reform” bill.

    The bill amends Senate rules in an effort to make more transparent legislative earmarks. It also aims to make clearer the relationship of lobbyists and lawmakers by changing rules governing meals and travel that lobbyists provide to lawmakers and their staff. The bill also makes some restrictions on post-employment for members and staff.

    2) I watched the entire YearlyKos debate video. I clearly heard, near the end of the dabate, Hillary said that she is for public financing of elections and that as a President she would sign such a bill. I can understand why she cannot refuse lobbyists’ money right now. She needs every penny that she can raise to win against the Republicans. She cannot afford to disarm unilaterally. She will abide by the current election finance law until it is reformed and adopted by all.

    3) There was a misconception regarding a statement that Hillary made during the YearlyKos debate. This misconception was wrongfully capitalized by her opponents. This was discussed in the Aug 8 issue of the Daily Howler.

    “CLINTON (8/4/07): I don’t think, based on my 35 years of fighting for what I believe in, anybody seriously believes I will be influenced by a lobbyist…

    Clinton hadn’t denied the obvious fact that lobbyists have a large influence. She had said something totally different—that lobbyists don’t influence her. ”

    The fact that her Senate votes were 1) identical to Obama’s, with the exception of 2 minor bills, and 2) more progressive than Edwards’s, supports my contention she is NOT more influenced by lobbyists than is Obama or Edwards. Obama’s “I’m purer than Hillary” and lumping Hillary with Washington culture of corruption arguments just doesn’t wash with me.

    As a matter of fact, the following news article suggests that regardless of Obama’s claim that he would not take lobbyist money, Obama pushed lobbyist’s interest in the Senate.

    “Away from the bright lights and high-minded rhetoric of the campaign trail, Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., has quietly worked with corporate lobbyists to help pass breaks worth $12 million.”

    “Only one other 2008 presidential hopeful has introduced more tariff suspension bills than Obama. Longshot GOP candidate Sen. Sam Brownback, Kan., introduced 30 such measures in the 109th Congress. Fellow dark horse candidate Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., introduced one in 2001; Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif. have introduced none.”

    “Some say the tariff suspension process isn’t how Washington should operate.”

    This article is proof that Obama is not an outsider, he is part of the Washinton insider that he is now proposing to reform. That is, he is not Jesus trying to chase out the money changers from the Temple. It appears to me that he is part of the money changer scene. Of course, I’m all for cleaning out the money changers from the temple.

    In conclusion, I am all for a more open govenment. For the reasons I’ve stated above, I believe so does Hillary. She would make a great first female President that I can be proud of.

  59. One thing you will not find at this site is whining. We are sick and tired of Democrats whining and complaining.

    Our policy is if you attack Hillary we will attack you. No unilateral disarmament.

    Obama calls Hillary “D-Punjab” we don’t complain. We call him a lowlife and begin to refer to him as “D-Rezko”.

    Obama calls Hillary “polarizing” we don’t whine, we demonstrate his own polarizing issues.

    This is not typical Democratic behavior. It scares Democrats at times. But we will fight back. We won’t whine about what the Ripublicans do either. We will fight back.

    No whining.

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