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Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Hey, Look, He's A Politician

Something's becoming clear of late about the Messiah of the Democratic Party, Barack Obama. He's a politician. His many positions on NAFTA, one for Ohio, one for Texas, and evidently, one for the Candian Consulate shows that he knows how to work the particular room he's in.

Another way he shows that he's actually a politician is by saying a lot without actually answering a question, as Lynn Sweet points out in the Chicago Sun Times today. Specifically she's referring to his answers, which really weren't, at yesterdays press conference where he continually dodged real questions about his dealings with Tony Rezko.

She also debunks the idea (circulated by the Obama camp) that he's answered all the questions about Rezko before. Her blog has some great posts up, including video and transcripts from the meetings where that supposedly happened. Read through it and see if you can find any answers.

One of the ironies of this whole flap comes in reading the comments by Obama supporters; my guess mostly loyal democrats; on many of the above linked articles. A good portion of them try to deflect criticism from Obama by bringing up, of all things, Whitewater. Many of these folks, I would suspect probably spent the late 1990's arguing about how much money the government was wasting on that investigation. Suddenly they all think it was worth it and shows Hillary to be a corrupt person.

I'm not a Clinton supporter, but her previous comments on being more fully vetted than the junior Senator from Illinois are starting to ring true. While there is a lot in her past that could be brought up in a general election, it's mostly stuff that's been around for a dozen or more years. Obama's problem will be that most of his issues are fresh.

When Rezko's trial actually gets underway and starts picking up steam over the next 6-8 weeks, Obama's name is sure to come up more than once. Each time it does it will bring Obama more clearly into focus not as a "savior" but as a Chicago styled politician. That's never a good thing in a national election.

Obama, of all politicians, should understand just what damage hidden skeltons in one's closet can do. He's in the Senate not because he was the best candidate in Illinois in 2004, but because his opponent, Jack Ryan, hid some serious skelton's in his divorce papers.

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