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Question of the day - Updated and bumped up

Friday, May 26, 2006

UPDATE: The responses to this question were so good that I decided to build my syndicated newspaper column around them. My apologies to those who didn’t make it into the piece. Almost all were good, but space is limited. Also, some arrived after I finished. I won’t be working Monday, but you’ll be able to find the column here.


Sweet says momentum is building for Obama ‘08:

Chatter is increasing among supporters of Sen. Barack Obama about him jumping into the 2008 presidential race as he cranks up his political operation.

Obama is now being helped by Washington public affairs strategist Minyon Moore, a Chicago native and veteran of the Clinton White House, who will serve as an unpaid adviser to develop an outreach plan for African Americans.

Obama (D-Ill.) is also adding to his team another Democratic strategist, Anita Dunn, to fill in through the end of the year as chief of his HOPEFUND political action committee.

Dunn, an adviser to ‘08 possible contender Sen. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.), is close to Obama’s chief of staff.

The 2008 talk is not being stoked by the freshman Obama camp, but is surging from all sorts of backers who see no reason for him to pass up this cycle. One thing Obama’s popularity and big political war chest bring — he would not have to mount a White House bid in order to be considered for vice president on a ticket.

Do you think he should run?

UPDATE: Let’s add another question into the mix… Do you think he should run for governor in 2010 instead?

UPDATE: Sweet updates her column. Obama’s “Hope Fund” has a million dollars cash on hand.

UPDATE: From Obama’s spokesman: “The money in Hopefund can not be used in a federal campaign”

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - ron - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:15 am:

    give me a break! this political novice would get his hat handed to him. he would probably start his campaign by endorsing some possible vice presidential candidate who was involved in questionable behavior at his bank.

  2. - Ravenswood Right Winger - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:18 am:

    only if he promises that, if elected POTUSA, he will appoint Alexi as his Treasury Secretary.

  3. - DOWNSTATE - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:25 am:

    Well here’s Blago’s brass ring to be VP.

  4. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:27 am:

    Boy, it’s never hard to identify the 25% of bloggers who voted for Alan Keyes.

    I remember these same folks arguing that Alan Keyes was going to hand Obama’s hat to him.

    Why are rabid Republicans so afraid of Barack Obama? I’m not sure, but it’s reason enough for him to run.

  5. - HeKnowsBarack - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:28 am:

    Sec of Treasury. No dice
    Alexander will settle only for VEEP and the old man get Ambassador to Greece. The brother can sec SecTreas.

  6. - 105th Blues - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:29 am:

    His positions are unknown to the public. He had a cream puff race due to a GOP implosion. He’s never been challenged seriously on his views and has gotten a free pass by the media up to this point. I think if he wanted to run the response would be too much too soon. How about getting some legislation or significant achievements (other than winning a race that was impossible to lose) under your belt first?

  7. - Beowulf - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:30 am:

    It is too soon for Barack. He would receive quite a few votes but not enough to get the job done. I would hate to see him spoil or set-back his political future by pulling the trigger too soon.

    I am a Republican and yet, I would consider throwing my vote to Obama. I always wanted to see Colin Powell as Vice-President. I think the timing is right for Colin Powell as Vice-President with the mindset being that he would be groomed for President. Barack Obama is politically a fresh breeze but my concern is his lack of experience for such a powerful position. And, if you say that George W. Bush lacked the national political experience that I am seeking in a Presidential candidate, I would reply, “I rest my case.”

    And, by the way, I am a male caucasion if you were wondering. Barack is one of our nation’s future leaders if he plays it smart and doesn’t let Party Politics make him do something stupid to appease his Democrat Party leadership.

  8. - Truthful James - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:33 am:

    Unfortunately, the IlDem Party would be weakened if Senator Obama went national. He is a good bet for governor next time around.

  9. - throw da bums out - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:36 am:

    Strike while the iron is hot. To those who think he needs more legislation or significant achievements, I say that four or eight more years is simply hundreds of votes that can be manipulated against him later. Obama has more governmental experience right now than W did when he was elected — what had he done? Six years as governor, hundreds executed and…nothing else. As for the Alexi BS, let’s not forget that one of W’s best friends was convicted yesterday.

  10. - OneMan - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:38 am:

    Go for it.

  11. - Goodbye Napoleon - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:51 am:

    Yes. He should run, first term doesn’t matter in reality. Look at John Kerry, he’s been in the Senate forever and when he speaks - you can tell - he talks like a Senator and he’s highly unlikeable. Barack would excite the electorate, something that all the others would not do. He would win.

  12. - Wumpus/Cad - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:55 am:

    The luckiest man in politics probably won’t win since he actually has to run a race. How many of his contenders will have had serious marriage problems? Clinton, yes, Kerry, yes (possibly), Edwards no,. I doubt there are that many candidates that would be exposed to be wife beaters or swingers and liars to boot.

    People like him, but he has had free reign to say whatever he likes. When he actually has to take a position on something, we will see.

  13. - Rob - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:56 am:

    I think Sen Obama shouldn’t run… his inexperience makes for too easy of a target. I think he can offer his fellow moderates his excitment and should start to move in that direction.

  14. - Anonymous - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:57 am:

    Of course he’ll run because he’ll activate a big, key constituency in the primary, while gaining name recognition and experience at running a national campaign. As a senate collegue, he won’t attack Hillary, just emphasize his concerns and solutions and create a good guy image. He’ll also gain strength in the Senate, which is good for IL.

    He won’t win and he probably won’t be selected for VP due to weak national security background, but he’d be a top contender for a cabinet position to groom him for future runs.

  15. - the Patriot - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:00 am:

    He should run. I would like nothing more then to see the most energetic and well spoken young star for the democrats peak early lose a presidential election and fizzel into oblivian. I do not like his politics, but concede he is probably the best democrat for the job, but since when does that matter.

    Like him or not, he is way to smart to jump into a race he can’t win. National politics is an old school game and he needs a few more years to get the big money behind him for a national election.

    Besides, he has never been challenged in a real election. He needs a strong win in his next Senate election, then VP in 2012 or pres in 2016. He is young and he has time and he knows it.

  16. - VanillaMan - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:03 am:

    I would like to see him run so that Illinois would know where he stands on the issues.

    Obama is the Halle Berry candidate; looks pretty, so he must be good at what he does.

  17. - Old Elephant - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:04 am:

    I’m both amused and appalled by the media’s Barack Obama Superstar infatuation. He accomplished nothing of significance in the Illinois Senate — except for compiling the most liberal record of any Senator. He’s accomplished nothing in the U.S. Senate. Yet, he’s Central Casting’s favorite candidate.

    If I were advising him, I’d tell him to go for it. Tragically, substance matters very little these days (as evidenced by our current Governor) and since the media has very short attention span, he needs to strike now, before they move on to the next superstar and he actually has a record to defend.

    Boy…do I sound grumpy this morning. Oh well…I guess it’s just one of those days when I long for real Governors and real Presidents.

  18. - zatoichi - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:12 am:

    He needs some more wear and tear on him. Smart guy with a great future if he takes his time, develops relationships, and actually does something that stands out in a difficult situation. The Alexi stuff is just junk that every politician has in their past.

  19. - THE HANKSTER - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:16 am:

    People seem to never understand that half of everything in politics is timing. This might be his time and best chance to win. Experience means very little when you look at how people vote the way they do. I guess it sounds nice for people who dont want him to be president that he is to young ect but the fact is that argument usually holds very little weight among voters.

  20. - Team Sleep - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:16 am:

    Wumpus, he has already taken stands on issues: the stands are called votes. Obamarama already has voted on thousands of bills and amendments, including crucial votes in areas such as national defense, two Supreme Court nominations, security matters, tax legislation and spending bills. Unless he starts pulling a Hillary Clinton and voting with the ebb-and-flow, it will be easy to paint our Senator as quite liberal. In the Dem primary, that’s a fine way to look but to a nation, one which is still concerned about national security and war matters, he would have a tougher time. And I’m sorry, but my boy John McCain would mop the floor with him. He would take the Straight Talk Cruiser all the way around the country and drive circles around Obama.

    Obama is still young and civil. Give him time to harden his skin and gain some trench experience before he takes on a major role like Presidential or Vice Presidential candidate. Barring any majr setbacks, he will get re-elected in 2010 and then he can worry about 2012 and 2016.

    And I really wish the press would stop pimping candidates for higher office. It seems like Al Gore, Rudy Guliani, John McCain, Obama, Hillary Clinton, Bill Frist and other prominent figures are always being hyped up or written about. It’s 2006! NBC, CBS, ABC and FoxNews need to quit speculating until after, you know, the 2006 midterms. It would be nice to hear a story on that instead of how many people Hillary Clinton met at a rally in Florida.

  21. - Cassandra - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:23 am:

    As president, we need somebody who has done something creative in a collaborative manner, something that benefits all citizens, not just the moneybags or the most powerful ethnic minority or such. Somebody like Romney and his universal health insurance plan, not somebody like Obama who has done vitually nothing since he got to the Senate. Wasn’t he assigned to chair something on ethics? Looks like he hasn’t produced anything there.

  22. - Ambulance chaser - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:30 am:

    Why not run? Even though I agree with comments about inexperience and not knowing Obama’s positions on the issues, I think we would raise the level of debate in the primary. And we would see what he’s about. I’m not sure I would vote for him this time around, but I would appreciate his presence. On the other hand, and admittedly on a superficial note, I am tired of the Bush/Clinton clans taking turns. Fresh blood, please!

  23. - Truthful James - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:34 am:

    Further on my last. He should be the next governor, which would give him executive experience which he now lacks. To get the nomination would mean heavy politicking within the State. Too many people think they should be first in line for the next nomination. One might be offered the Obama seat, but I do not think, Messrs. Ehite and Hynes and Ms. Madigan have any desire to go to Washington.

    To many people these days are in he arms of their handlers, who need employment themselves. Sen. Obama is a nice candle for these moths to flit around.

  24. - THE HANKSTER - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:37 am:

    Cassandra: What did Bush do before he was president that was “creative”? What about Clinton? The other Bush? Reagan? Carter? Being elected president has almost ALWAYS been about ideas and a vision for the future. History seems to be arguing against you.

  25. - SenorAnon - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:38 am:

    Some people post because they have something meaningful to add. Others because they can. Lots of the latter - very little of the former. Go educate yourselves a bit. Then post. Think of it as the blogging version of “think, then speak.”

    And I dare say, if the Junior Senator had an R next to his name, the sarcastic ones here would be proclaiming him the greatest thing since indoor plumbing (and to be fair, his defenders would probably be showing THEIR jealosy in the way his detractors are now).

  26. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:42 am:

    Let’s stick to the topic at hand instead of slamming commenters, please. There are plenty of thoughtful people here. Just because an opinion hasn’t occurred to you doesn’t mean it isn’t valid.

  27. - NW burbs - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:43 am:

    Ditto Yellow Dog Dem…

    Apparently all 25% of Keyes supporters are bloggers and commenters at CapFax.

    Why do conservatives constantly complain about ‘ad hominem attacks’ — aka “ad eminem” ;) — but then when they have nothing but vitriol left in their bag it’s the first trick they turn to?

    Slimey… Kinda like Roskam’s recent sleazey attack on Major Duckworth.

    Anyone who doesn’t know Obama’s positions doesn’t know how to read:

    Just because you people choose to remain ignorant to his principles doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

  28. - quad cities - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:44 am:

    I think Senator Obama could be a red-hot candidate in the blue, red and purple states.
    But bringing Anita Dunn, who is one of Senator Evan Bayh’s presidential campaign architects, tells me this is more about bringing seasoned folks on board to help with growing demands on his time, staff, etc., than about a presidential run up. But we’re in the Quad Cities and we see Davenport, Iowa, from here. When Obama shows up in Davenport, then we’ll start the Obama rallies.

  29. - ZC - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:47 am:

    No, he should not run. Bottom line, a) he hasn’t accomplished anything yet to run on - which counts more than people give credit for; b) he hasn’t been on the national stage long enough to acquire an aura of presidential caliber even lacking some signature accomplishment.

    Obama is the media darling, but make no mistake, that glow will vanish as soon as he becomes a candidate and goes up against Hillary’s $40 million ad machine.

    What he ought to do is what I think he really is doing - campaigning for the VP slot. A Hillary-Obama ticket makes all kinds of sense. It would energize a key turnout constituency for Dems and would also bring back a lot of liberal Dems who seem disenchanted with Hillary. I’ve heard several times talking with these folks, “Oh, I don’t know if I’d vote for Hillary … but I would if she picked Obama for VP.” He would be like the Cheney pick for Bush, or the Edwards pick for Kerry - solidifying the base. And the media would go nuts over the pick, he’d get a raftload of positive coverage that way, and he’d be in prime position one way or another to seek the Presidential nod down the line. What’s not to like?

  30. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:48 am:

    Again, NW Burbs, let’s stop the bashing here. It really doesn’t do this site any good for commenters to claim other commenters are idiots.

  31. - THE HANKSTER - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:49 am:

    Rich…if something is not accurate I believe it in the best interest of this blog to correct it.

  32. - Rich Miller - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:51 am:

    You can correct something without this relentless bashing.

  33. - Leroy - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:52 am:

    His Holiness Pope Obama I must have a divine mandate here, because he sure as heck doesn’t have the leadership record.

    We are still mired in Iraq, still spending more money both at the Fed level and at the state level, the corruption needle is off the chart here in Illinois and in Chicago.

    Illinois is falling apart at the seams, and yet people keep repeating to me over and over again ad nauseum how great Obama and Durban are.

    Where is the leadership?

  34. - THE HANKSTER - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:55 am:

    Rich: fair enough

  35. - Truthful James - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:05 am:


    NWBurbs and I have tangled on another Blog, and he may have been aiming at me.

    Rest assured that I was not sarcastic when I suggested that Sen. Obama (who is on the way up) could get some good experience as our governor.

    The ‘hot’ people in politics attract interested handlers who have their own careers in mind. Nothing wrong with that. At the end of the day the prospective candidate has to keep his own counsel. That should be obvious as well.

  36. - Ambulance chaser - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:06 am:

    Going back to Springfield would be excruciating to Obama. Not a snowball’s chance!

  37. - Lt. Dan - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:17 am:

    If Obama does become Hillary’s VP, and she wins, then that is another 8 years in which he wouldn’t be president. So that would take us to 2016. There was a great article in Chicago Magazine about Obama and why he should or shouldn’t run about two months ago. If Obama wants to run he should. He’s the one who’s going to be going through the campaign. But if he does run, I’ll sure as heck vote for him!

  38. - ZC - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:20 am:

    Running for governor would force Obama back into the Springfield world of ethical compromise and split-the-baby. He can’t keep his moral aura if he does so. Plus that also threatens an apocalyptic battle with the Madigans, assuming Lisa is running. That’s a fight even Obama might not win.

    Run for the VP nod, Barack. The strategy worked pretty well for John Kerry, and he didn’t even _get_ the VP nod when he tried it. (He actively campaigned for the VP slot in 2000. Set him up well for 2004).

  39. - Left Leaner - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:23 am:

    Echo “Strike while the iron is hot.” Forget the Hillary-Obama ticket - go with the Obama-Hillary ticket.

  40. - Anonymous - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:26 am:

    After he makes a respectable presidential run that nobody expects him to win, earning him stronger national recognition, he might be picked for Secretary of State, VA, or Interior given his Senate committee work or he’ll just continue safely growing in the Senate.

    He shouldn’t run for Governor or VP until he’s been in a non-legislative role, such as Secretary of something, to learn leadership skills, which are very different from legislative skills.

  41. - Wumpus/Cad - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:39 am:

    NWBurbs, you mean kinda like the Dem’s sleazy attacks on Roskam re: Delay. If you approve of the Duckworth camp/dems associating him with Delay, how can you in all cerealness complain about the Roskam team associating her with Rahm Emmanuel?
    You can’t be ceral

  42. - Lovie's Leather - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:47 am:

    Maybe Obama will try to make a presidential run. He won’t win, and I doubt anybody would pick him to run. He is a first-term senator who, because of his recent actions, has shown he is nothing more than a Durbin hack. Also, he represents a state that the dems are going to win either way. When Kennedy picked Johnson, it was to win Texas and appease the south. There is no reason for anyone to pick Obama. Although he is still a media darling, who knows how long that’ll last? I have no idea if he would ever consider running for governor. I doubt it though. Namely because senators traditionally don’t have leadership skills. I am not trying to dis Obama, but senators are quite often political hacks that can do nothing more than sit and vote. That is why I don’t like senators running for president, Republican or Democrat. It’s still to early in Obama’s career to say what he will do… Let’s talk about this after he wins reelection… in 2010….

  43. - Just Saying - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:51 am:

    From a strategic standpoint, why not? Let’s assume that he actually wants to be president some day. What are his options?

    He could wait and get “more experience.” His Senate term is up in 2012. If a Democrat is elected president in 2008, he’d be building for a 2016 run. If a Republican wins in 2008, Obama could shoot for 2012. So running for governor in 2010 would only work if a Democrat took the White House. Otherwise, he’d have to start laying the groundwork for a presidential run as soon as he got the governorship. If a Democrat wins, he would probably be better off taking a job with the administration — VP if he could get it. Either way, I don’t see how being governor really fits. And staying in the Senate, well, I don’t think that boosts his chances at all.

    But what more experience does Obama need? Right now, he goes places and people BEG him to run for president. Most other candidates BEG voters to pay attention to them. I’m not kidding. He speaks well. He inspires people. He can be partisan without sounding like it. He has the “vision thing.”

    Does he need foreign policy experience? He’s not Richard Lugar, but he’s on the Foreign Relations Cmte. He lived in a few years as a kid. And, obviously, he has plenty of ties to — and an understanding of — Africa. That’s more than Clinton or Reagan or Carter had at the beginning of their terms…

    Not to be glib here, but Lincoln had comparable experience in elected office. Lincoln was a state rep for a while and served in the U.S. House for a single term. Then Lincoln lost two consecutive U.S. Senate races. All I’m saying is, there’s not a formula for determining how much experience is enough. And there might be a downside to having too much experience (look at Kerry, Gore and Dole).

    So the other big complaint I’m hearing is his lack of legislative accomplishments. First of all, I for one can’t tell you a single thing off the top of my head that George Bush or Bill Clinton did as governors. That’s not to diminish their terms, just to say, that’s not what voters are looking for. And in the Illinois Senate, when the Dems took the majority, Obama had a number of big-time bills. The videotape interrogation bill was one that passed with his sponsorship after years and years of languishing — even when Mike Madigan was the chief sponsor. Now a lot of this was great timing on Obama’s part. You can’t deny his incredible luck. But it’ll still sell well.

    So what’s the downside? What if Obama loses? What if Hillary beats him? He’s still in the Senate. And if it’s Hillary who beats him, he’ll be perfectly poised to run again in 2012, because she’ll lose and people will be dying for someone who they can relate to.

    And Obama’s magic is he’s all things to all people. He’s a midwesterner because of his ties to Kansas and Illinois. To blacks, he’s a former community organizer who’s fought City Hall, literally, for better schools and housing. He’s the son of an immigrant to people who have recently come here. He’s a Harvard-educated lawyer for the upper class and the New England liberals. He manages to appeal to all these segments of society without alienating the others. That’s why his DNC speech went over so well.

    That appeal may not last forever, but it’s a heck of a place to start a presidential campaign.

  44. - Cassandra - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 10:52 am:

    That’s my opinion and I’m sticking to it. Vision is fine, but anybody can have one, or even buy one given all the media consultants selling them.

    I want to see proof that the candidate can actually accomplish something difficult. No signs of that yet with Obama.

  45. - Grubnednarb - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:00 am:

    As it stands, Senator Hilary Clinton appears to be to positioned to steamroll over all her opponents for the Democratic nomination for the presidency. Three prominently mentioned moderate alternatives - Edwards, Warner, and Bayh appear to be competing for the same moderate/consevative base in Democratic Party - consequently they tend to weaken each other and dilute the anti-Hilary, stop Hilary activists in in the Democratic Party.

    WHETHER HE’S READY OR NOT, AN OBAMA CANDIDACY WOULD BE AN iNTERESTING VEHICLE TO SLOW DOWN SENATOR CLINTON’S MOMENTUM for the Democratic nomination, and create a better chance for one strong moderate alternative to emerge from the pack and challenge Senator Clinton.

    I am very liberal and like and respect Senator Clinton. I think she’s smart enough and tough enough to be President. Unlike my moderate colleagues in the Democratic Party, I don’t believe that her nomination spells electoral doom in the 2008 Presidential election, particularly after Dubya’s reign as one of the all-time worst president’s in American history.

    I would personally would be proud and happy to support Senator Clinton if she emerges as the Democratic nominee. However as a natural contrarian,I’d like to see a real battle for the Democratic nomination between Senator Clinton and one strong moderate alternative. May the best person win.

    I think Senator Obama needs a little more seasoning and experience on the national stage, as well as some executive experience, to be a genuine contender for the Presidency. So for reasons stated above, I say: GO OBAMA GO. He’d be an ideal 2008 VP nominee - an asset to any Democratic ticket.

  46. - Leroy - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:08 am:

    Last president elected from the US Senate - Kennedy (1960). That’s almost half a century ago.

    It’s not easy to get elected from the Senate. John Kerry failed. Bob Dole failed. Walter Mondale failed. George McGovern failed. Barry Goldwater failed.

  47. - ChicagoCynic - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:10 am:

    Obama won’t run in 2008. He knows he doesn’t have adequate experience or sophistication. Any careful observer of Obama’s words and actions (as opposed to mythology), knows he is a very, very careful and cautious politician. Frankly, he still hasn’t really found his national voice yet. It will come in a couple years. But if somehow Barack could prevent Lisa Madigan from running in 2010 and win the mansion, he would be the odds on favorite for President. He would be such a prohibitive favorite, that he would make the current Hilary candidacy look like an uber-long shot.

  48. - ChicagoCynic - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:11 am:

    Obama won’t run in 2008. He knows he doesn’t have adequate experience or sophistication. Any careful observer of Obama’s words and actions (as opposed to mythology), knows he is a very, very careful and cautious politician. Frankly, he still hasn’t really found his national voice yet and sometimes his excessive caution is extremely frustrating. It will come in a couple years.

    But if somehow Barack could prevent Lisa Madigan from running in 2010 and win the mansion, he would be the odds on favorite for President. He would be such a prohibitive favorite, that he would make the current Hilary candidacy look like an uber-long shot.

  49. - ChicagoCynic - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:11 am:

    Sorry for the double post - computer hiccup. Rich, if you watch the thread, would you mind getting rid of the first one and this one.

  50. - THE HANKSTER - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:13 am:

    Wumpus/Cad: Did you see and/or read Roskams press conference? It was a joke, he said Duckworth was too close to democrats…well stop the presses Major Duckworth associates with democrats! Now if Roskam wants to make this an Delay Emanuel issue Duckworth rolls to victory.

  51. - THE HANKSTER - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:19 am:

    CASSANDRA: You have every right to vote how you want, im simply saying that experience has hisotrically never been an issue compared to vision.

  52. - Leo McGarry - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:26 am:

    Governor Obama 2010! The road to the Oval Office runs through the 2d floor of the State House in Springfield. Obama for Illinois, then Obama for America.

  53. - Wumpus/Cad - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:40 am:

    The Hankster, it is basically a press conference that implies that MTD is representing the Chicago Democrats. You may think it was a joke, but there was a reason for the conference. People in the 6th have more understanding of how things are in the city than some conveluded financing issue that can be spun into a political witch hunt in Texas. Roskam wins by sheer numbers.
    As for Obama, he is not Al Sharpton. He does not need any extra exposure, so that is not his motivation to run. If he runs, it will becaus eh thinks he can win. He has money, and does not need the DNC Mosely BRaun, Sharpton, Kucinich hand out of inviting them to the debates.

  54. - Bubs - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:40 am:

    Being a Republican, I hope he runs.

    It will end Obamamania, as the cold spotlight of the press will decend upon him, for once, and Hillary will rip him to shreds. (The area between Hillary Rodham Clinton and something she wants is a dangerous place for anyone to be, even Prince Barack.)

    The public will view him as too ambitious, given his limited experience. Obama is the political equivalent of American Idol. But the American public can be very vindictive towards those who abuse their adoration, once granted.

    Of course, I think he is too smart to run, but he will enjoy riding the wave of speculation to increase his clout and national image. And if Hillary wants him for VP, which I strongly doubt, why not?

  55. - THE HANKSTER - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:57 am:

    Wumpus/Cad: Look at poll results with leads when you link someone to Tom Delay, its a huge issue. Like I said, if this becomesd Emanuel vs Delay, Duckworth wins and you can see that in polling.

  56. - Veritas - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 11:58 am:

    He’ll form an exploration committee, announce that he’s thinking about running, bow out and be picked up by the eventual nominee as the running mate.

  57. - RFK fan - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 12:39 pm:

    The real questions here are, 1, what kind of risk would it pose to Obama to accept a VP position, and 2, whether to run for Governor in 2010.

    Governor might make sense if the state proves governable by then…just a little more financial room to maneuver, and some sense that not every single Governor has to go to jail.

    VP is something that’s awfully hard to turn down when it’s offered, particularly early in one’s career, but it does not come without risks. Having said that, for the right head of the ticket, Obama could be a real asset.

  58. - ZC - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 12:53 pm:

    On this topic, here’s a fun link to some Beltway speculation about Democratic candidates in 2008. It mentions Obama.

    It looks like a very full field, with lots of contenders to be the anti-Hillary. And as the article points out, even if he had to wait until 2016, Obama would be … 55.

  59. - Levois - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 1:11 pm:

    This would be bad news for Obama. I think he might get eaten alive. So far he’s had it so easy.

  60. - grand old partisan - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 1:38 pm:

    Did Obama’s spokesperson mean “state campaign?”

  61. - Anon - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 1:43 pm:

    why do folks keep saying we dont know his positions - people, that will NOT apply here, the man will have a Senate term under his belt - you WILL kno whis positions and it wont matter what his positions were in the state senate.

  62. - NW burbs - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:03 pm:

    Rich Miller - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:48 am:

    Again, NW Burbs, let’s stop the bashing here. It really doesn’t do this site any good for commenters to claim other commenters are idiots.


    Rich, where in my post did I call anyone an idiot? (By the by, you and I must have been typing at the same time. You finished first.) It’s rare that I out and out call someone an idiot and when I do it’s usually because I truly feel they deserve it. More often that not, if an idea is stupid I’ll call a spade a spade — but that’s an idea, not a person.

    Perhaps you meant my snarky comment about folks not being able to read… It was snark, yes, but c’mon — why are so many conservative posters claiming they don’t know where he stands on issues? At the time 4 posters (out of about 25) had claimed they didn’t know where he stood on the issues.

    All they need to do is read. (And, again, your original tsk, tsk was written at the same time I was writing my original comment.)

    As for the Roskam quip, was it a stretch? Sure. But anytime I can point out his hypocrisy I will and given the multiple attempts by conservative commenters to imply Obama doesn’t take a stand I saw an opportunity to again demonstrate the conservatives’ hypocrisy.

    Roskam can defend his own comments calling Major Duckworth’s relationship with other Democrats sleazy (while simultaneously playing “Peter” about his strong support from Tom DeLay). Instead he relies on Wumpus and others to do his dirty work for him.

    From my point of view, calling someone slimey or sleazy for essentially no reason is in itself slimey-n-sleazy (and a cop out aimed at distracting voters from actual issues while attempting to rally the hard-core “base” like the Wumpusses out there). Same goes for ad hominem attacks claiming a United States Senator has not taken a stand on any issues.


    Truthful James, my post had nothing to do with you but had everything to do with comments by:
    > 105th Blues - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:29 am:
    > Wumpus/Cad - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 8:55 am
    > VanillaMan - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:03 am
    > Ambulance chaser - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 9:30 am


    I originally wrote:
    Ditto Yellow Dog Dem…

    Apparently all 25% of Keyes supporters are bloggers and commenters at CapFax.

    Why do conservatives constantly complain about ‘ad hominem attacks’ — aka “ad eminem” ;) — but then when they have nothing but vitriol left in their bag it’s the first trick they turn to?

    Slimey… Kinda like Roskam’s recent sleazey attack on Major Duckworth.

    Anyone who doesn’t know Obama’s positions doesn’t know how to read:

    Just because you people choose to remain ignorant to his principles doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

  63. - ONE MAN CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:16 pm:

    Before Senator Obama can take on any other job, he has to first get the U.S Senator’s duties right.

    I blame him for allowing the Governor’s office to violate law and then breaking bread with them. He pushed for an passed an ETHICS bill in Washington but it is apparent he’s not in tuned to the ETHICAL lapses of the State of Illinois.

    Take care of home first then seek more!!!!!!!!

  64. - Truthful James - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 2:42 pm:

    NW Burbs -

    Thanks. We will live to skirmish another day.

    Rich -

    It is unfortunately easy for correspondent to over reach the subject and extend it into non sequiters. It is tough to reach the right mix of heat and light to bear and so it happened

    You know me to be just a little right of Genghis Khan, so to speak. But permit me a comment.

    The Roskam/Duckworth campaigns deserve to have serious issue discussions. Unfortunately, campaigning has turned negative instead, and IMHO we swing wildly and go outside the foul lines because we have lost sight of where they are. Roskam/Delay is ancient history, unless someone would care to show that the former is corrupt now as the result of having been an intern or whatever many years ago. It is like saying you didn’t wash your hands before picking up the Torah at your bar mitzvah, long long ago.

    He has a Senatorial record in Springfield to call into question.

    But that is not the way politics is played today, and we are the worse for it. Trash talking, personal and generic. We spend so much money campsigning thst we have to win or our contributors will dry up.

    Campaign Finance Reform will never work as long as the electioneering period is so long. It ought to be four weeks between primary and general election.

  65. - Goodbye Napoleon - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 3:09 pm:

    Forget about VP for Hillary! A main reason many Dems want him to run is because she’s the front runner right now and she doesn’t look very electable. Look how many congressional candidates all around the country asked Barack to come and stump for them in ‘04 and again this year. Many people ask Hillary to do fund-raisers for them, but not help win voters. I like her and would vote for her, but Obama is the one I would run knock on doors and travel to Iowa for.

  66. - grand old partisan - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 3:15 pm:

    Good god, NW burbs. Roskam did NOT call Duckworth ‘sleazy.’ So, by your own definition, I suppose that makes YOU ‘sleazy’ now.

    Roskam raised an issue. An issue that Duckworth herself legitimized with months of “Tom Delay’s protégé” comments. If Roskam’s ties to Delay’s political operation are relevant, then so are Duckworth’s to Daley (who’s administration is under federal investigation) and Blago’s (ditto). If you disagree with that, head over to Illinoize and explain why.

  67. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 3:27 pm:

    Experience, record, blah, blah, blah.

    There’s only four men alive who have the experience of running the country: Gerald Ford, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Karl Rove.

    In a debate between experience and vision, vision wins.

    In a debate between programs and principles, principles win.

    In a debate between John McCain and Barack Obama, I’m not sure who’d win, but I’d love to have a front row seat.

  68. - NW burbs - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 3:53 pm:

    GOP -

    I was referencing the Crain’s article. In retrospect I now see Crain’s reporter Greg Hinz did not attribute “sleaze-factor” directly to Sen. Roskam.

    Perhaps Crain’s was putting words in his mouth, but their article is where I first saw the term in regards to that Roskam presser.


    ‘Sleaze factor’ at play in battle for Rep. Hyde’s seat
    May 18, 2006
    By Greg Hinz

    (Crain’s) — The hotly contested race in the west suburban 6th Congressional District took a new twist Thursday as the GOP nominee sought to turn the so-called sleaze factor on the Democrat in the race.

    State Sen. Peter Roskam, R-Wheaton, charged that Democrat Tammy Duckworth has received massive help from Chicago Democrats who have been caught in a growing series of political scandals. (snip)


    Regardless, it’s not as if Roskam hasn’t received ‘massive’ amounts of help from DuPage and Washington Republicans. They cleared the primary for him and have helped promote him both in DC and the 6th. Pot calling kettle black…

  69. - ZC - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 6:08 pm:


    You left out the one woman who has the experience of running the country.

  70. - ZC - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 6:20 pm:

    And no, I’m not talking about Nancy Reagan and her astrologer.

  71. - Juice - Friday, May 26, 06 @ 6:33 pm:

    You also left out Carter. (If Ford gets mentioned, you gotta mention Carter)

  72. - Fresh Face Fred - Tuesday, May 30, 06 @ 3:38 pm:

    Yes. For President. Even better, for Governor. All politics is local, right? Time for someone who breaks the mold. Let’s dump all these traditional politicians in D.C. and Illinois–from Kerry to Madigan!

  73. - Green - Wednesday, Apr 25, 07 @ 8:12 am:

    Hi Sam! Photos i send on e-mail.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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