Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Obama on Meet the Press

This morning, I watched "Meet the Press" with its in-depth interview of Barack Obama. It reminded me of what I thought a few months ago, that when you listen to him, you realize he is the right man for the job, both as nominee and president. His answers were not politician-like. His vocabulary actually includes the words "yes" and "no." He was asked about the event he put on (I forget where) that included a singer who claims that he is an ex-gay and that homosexuality is a curse. Does he agree that homosexuality is a curse? "No." He then talked about the need to talk to people you don't agree with on every issue, not just people you like and agree with on every issue. He went further and addressed "homophobia" in the black community and black churches, saying that his faith did not run that way. But that he thought dialogue was important. I was left thinking... wow. Apparently six weeks ago, his wife Michelle said that "if we don't win Iowa, this is just a dream." He agreed that it was crucial to do well in Iowa, but added with a smile, "I think she says the same kind of thing when she's in NH or S. Carolina." "But isn't Iowa must-win?" asked Russert. "Well, we have to do well in Iowa, NH, Nevada, and SC. I don't know any candidate who think he or she can win the nomination and not do well in those four states."

The best part was when Obama was asked if Sen. Clinton could win. "Yes." He said flatly. "I just think it will be harder for her than for some, because so many voters already have preconceived notions about her." He then added that, more importantly, he felt she would have a harder time governing. "I want to make sure every child has health care; you need more than 50%+1 to accomplish that. I want to fight global warming; you need more than 50%+1 to achieve that. I think I have the better chance of changing the political climate." This are precisely the conclusions I (and I think RBR) seem to be coming to.

Sadly, I cannot picture HRC answering these questions with anywhere near the candor or definitiveness Obama did. And she would say that she could govern from the center, but would be unable to make an argument for it. I know Dr.S supports HRC, as do others close to me. But I am getting ready to cast my vote for Obama now. I'm convinced that the policy differences between HRC and Obama are minor, and the HRC/Obama decision is about experience, electability, and the ability to govern from the center. As I mentioned earlier, I discount experience except in the field of campaigning itself.


Anonymous said...

Wow. I didn't see the interview.
I'm hoping to check it out from the web.

Thanks for the review. I agree with you. That was a great response on whether Hillary could win.

Nikki said...

Tim Russert misleadingly cropped one of Obama's quotes too.

It was a significant omission to leave out the last line of this quote: "But, I'm not privy to Senate intelligence reports,'' Mr. Obama said. ''What would I have done? I don't know. What I know is that from my vantage point the case was not made."

He edited that out to question Obama's early opposition of the war.

Dr. Strangelove said...

You seriously believe that a black man is more electable than a white woman?

The Law Talking Guy said...

In the abstract, I would say no. But, Obama is no Al Sharpton, and HRC is no Maggie Thatcher. I certainly think that the effect of race or gender is less, at this point, than other factors that will determine electability.

Dr. Strangelove said...

I bring up the racial/gender issues because I often hear news organizations speak of these as a *positive* factor for Obama and Clinton... and I wonder if that is really true.

The Law Talking Guy said...

Women politicians are generally perceived as being less corrupt than men. This is a widespread view pollsters see all the time. That's an advantage if your adversary has ethical issues.

Raised By Republicans said...

I don't think Clinton or Obama can count their gender or race strongly as net positives. In Clinton's case I know a lot of conservative women who hate her guts. As for Obama, while he's likely to get a high percentage of African-American support in a general election, African-Americans have a solid record of not turning out to vote. And those that do vote, vote for Democrats 90% of the time anyway.

The question, I think, is how important will their gender or race be in energizing opposition. In Clinton's case I think we know that the right wing will turn out just to keep her out of the White House. Republicans are already using her in their adds and fund raising literature. We don't really know about Obama's effect. We can assume that there will be a racist backlash but there isn't the established trend that we see already in Clinton's case.