Obama – all style?

May 2nd, 2007 at 10:44 am by David Farrar

My preferred Democratic nominee for President remains Hillary Clinton at this stage. Obama’s rhetoric and potential is impressive but I have consistently said that two years as a Junior Senator is not enough experience for the most powerful role in the world.

This report from his first real debate suggests this is the case. He did a less than stellar performance.

Obama appeals for his potential, but you need more than just talking about hope. My hope is that he will develop further and be a more credible candidate for 2012 or 2016. But he may still beat Clinton for the 2008 nomination -time will tell.

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34 Responses to “Obama – all style?”

  1. stan () says:

    sounds like Helen Clark – pussiness disguised as pacifism

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  2. Aucklander At Large () says:

    Although I doubt I’m the first person to tell you this, but the “next post” and “previous post” links on the sidebar lead you in a circle…

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  3. Bernard Darnton () says:

    two years as a Junior Senator is not enough experience for the most powerful role in the world

    you need more than just talking about hope

    Sound like anyone a bit closer to home?

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  4. GNZ () says:

    I question if it is not a matter of experience but one of ability.

    There is some over eagerness in the democratic party to have either a black or a female leader (out of a smallish pool of both) – and they happen to have been a little luckier with their female choice.

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  5. kiwi in america () says:

    Hillary may be able to use her experience (and Bill’s) plus her connections to grind out an eventual win against Obama but in reality, she was the loser in the debate. Obama didn’t need to slam dunk her, he merely had hold his own on the same stage as experienced senators such as Biden and Clinton. By so doing he helps diminish his leading negative – inexperience.

    Obama has a crucial hurdle to cross with the extreme anti-war Democrat base that he must pander to in order to win the nomination. Now that the Dems have failed to override Bush’s veto of the Iraq war supplemental, there is talk now of a cleaner bill that Bush can sign as the money is running out. The Dems have played possum over the war attempting to have their cake and eat it too (appeal to the anti-war base with tough sounding rhetoric but not wanting to be seen to be defunding the troops in the midst of a strategy change that might work and thus consign themselves to a McGovern like defeat in the general election in 08).

    Obama has indicated that he would eventually vote for a clean supplemental with no substantive qualifications (ie a bill that the Pres will sign). Clinton being more of a hawk will do the same. As sitting senators they cannot avoid this vote. Edwards however can and by renouncing his 02 vote for the war (something Clinton has refused to do), he has tried to capture the anti war vote of the left. Obama of course wasn’t in the Senate in 02 and always opposed the war and so, up until now, has been able to match Edwards in keeping the base happy concerning the Iraq war. A vote for a supplemental will change that in one fell swoop leaving Edwards alone to be crown prince of the anti-war left. For this reason Edwards leads in Iowa the first primary (actually a caucus) and if Obama and Clinton both vote for a war funding bill that Bush will sign, the Democrat base will go nuts and swing in behind Edwards. Clinton’s negatives are so high that even senior party officials are questioning whether she can carry the nomination.

    Interesting times ahead. Meanwhile on the Republican side – watch Mitt Romney -this guy is the real deal. If Fred Thompson enters the race he will race to an early lead and it may end up a Thompson – Romney Republican ticket but thats if Thompson runs.

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  6. thehawk () says:

    Clinton’s credentials are presumably lighting her husband’s pussy-soaked cigars.

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  7. Concerned in Naenae () says:

    “Mitt Romney -this guy is the real deal”

    In what way kiwi? From what I’ve seen, even the Repugs call Mitt a flip-flopper.

    Re Clinton and Obama, even in the current Dem approving climate, would a Black man or a woman make POTUS? Maybe they would be better to team up with Obama as VP. She still has the numbers even with the negatives.

    They (the US voters that is – and Diebold tricks aside) seem to like white guys with a nice smile and plenty of hair – at least up till now.

    I agree about Fred Thompson, he certainly has the profile from his acting.

    Thanks for your insight though – it will be interesting to see if the Kucinich impeachment starts getting some traction from the MSM and subsequent reaction.

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  8. Greenjacket () says:

    More important will be the next quarter’s fund raising. Obama suprised with the amount he raised last quarter. If Obama raises more than Clinton, then it will be all over Clinton – with the enthusiasm of the grass-roots plus funding equal or greater than that of Clinton may well create an unstoppable Obama juggernaught.

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  9. Concerned in Naenae () says:

    “Speaking of Kucinich … I don’t care who is president, but I vote Elizabeth Kucinich for first lady!”

    LOL – Yup – roger that :)

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  10. reid () says:

    Mike Gravel is the man.

    http://www.rys2sense.com/anti-neocons/viewtopic.php?p=40784

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  11. David Farrar () says:

    Thompson will be formidable if he stands. I don’t think Romney can win as a Mormon is unelectable (for now).

    Had not checked out Elizabeth K previously but my God – yes she is hot, intelligent and well spoken. Pity abut her husband though.

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  12. reid () says:

    KIA says: “…but not wanting to be seen to be defunding the troops in the midst of a strategy change that might work…”

    Yeh right.

    Keep watching Fox, KIA. Apparently, it’s 20% more Fair and Balanced.

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  13. Clint Heine () says:

    The simularities with Helen Clark are remarkable. Obama also violated Congressional ethics rules by using his taxpayer-funded Capitol Hill office for campaign activities.

    Peas in a pod.

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  14. Nominous () says:

    Lame, lame, lame. Who do you think you are, a provincial moderate commenting on US politics? And wtf is Thompson? Even Rush Limbaugh said there’s an 80% chance Hillary will be the next President. The witch queen is going to win, buster. You haven’t even yet seen how weak a candidate Giuliani is going to be. Thompson simply garners even more wishful thinking than Giuliani, because of the transvestite’s low electibility.

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  15. tim barclay () says:

    Obama will force Clinton to better define her mushy centralism but she will win. As you said yapping on about hope is a bit of a con when you do not define things. Yes I suppose we have a simiar picture in NZ with an experiened lady against a new man propsing hope and opportunity. But that is against a background of a Government stale and corrupt and without a clear set of values except to hang on to office. And the Labour Party has always been proud of its values but the conservative farmers’ daughter is emtying them of all that. And they cannot see that.

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  16. kiwi in america () says:

    There is no denying that Hillary is a formidable foe and her vaunted attack machine has only begun to do its work on Obama. In a story about his ties to a campaign donor who has been indicted on a high profile scam of federal funds, Obama’s answers to the local Chicago media investigations have been lame to say the least. Obama has clearly trumped Clinton big time in the fund raising stakes as Hillary has pretty much maxed out her donor list and padded her primary returns with some general election funds (the two types of donation cannot be mingled) and a $10m transfer of existing funds from her Senate war chest. Obama’s donor base is twice the size and has only paid an average of $200 thus far and so can give multiple times in both the primary and general elections cycles.

    The Iraq war is a much more potent issue in the Democratic primary due to the base being so vehemently anti-war and significantly more anti war than mainstream America (eg independents, who are the key to all elections, do not support the Democrats attempts to force a troop withdrawal). That is why I outlined the dramatic impact of any senate vote by Clinton and Obama to support even a compromise supplemental bill. The Democrat activist base (who are the core of their primary voters) are hyper sensitive to any pandering to Bush and will punish any candidate who may retreat from the electorally damaging cliff of defunding the troops.

    Nominous – it may pay to do a little more research before bursting into print. If you look at the internals of various recent polls, Hillary’s problem is not just her rising negatives but the shrinking of her core support – that of single women and blacks. Bill’s charm has been insufficient to staunch the flow of these two groups to Obama – the former charmed by his youthful vigour (he is 15 years younger than Clinton) and the latter because he is black. Clinton will not go down without a fight but the trend of all polls for her has been ominous.

    David – I was inclined to agree re Romney and the Mormon thing but dont forget Romney got elected as a Republican governor in the most secular left wing of states. He came within 6 points of ousting the venerable Senator Ted Kennedy in 1994. Kennedy’s vaunted attack crew could find absolutely no skeletons in Romney’s closet and Kennedy himself refrained from any overt attacks on Romney’s religion. Mormonism is viewed less negatively in the US due to the sheers numbers of normal and prosperous LDS and their influence (currently there are 9 congressmen and 5 senators who are Mormon including the Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid). Romney has a powerful resume and is extraordinarily articulate and his support skyrockets each time he speaks somewhere prominent. He won the CPAC straw poll (a convention of conservatives) and recenly won a series of straw polls in North Carolina). He is neck and neck with McCain in New Hampshire and not far behind Guiliani in Iowa. National polls for both sides are meaningless. He has won the Republican fundraising campaign and will continue to do so as he is personally by far the wealthiest candidate announced or thinking on either side. In the end the religion issue may count against him but not as much as you might think.

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  17. David Farrar () says:

    KIA – I hope you are right because for me religion is a non issue. But recents polls indicate 25% would not vote for a Mormon for President, regardless of who they are.

    SO Romney can win in theory but he starts with a big handicap.

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  18. JBA () says:

    Oh how I miss The West Wing.

    Leo would know what to do.

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  19. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    Meanwhile on the Republican side – watch Mitt Romney -this guy is the real deal.

    When asked his favorite novel in an interview shown yesterday on the Fox News Channel, Mitt Romney pointed to “Battlefield Earth,” a novel by L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology. That book was turned into a film by John Travolta, a Scientologist.A spokesman said later it was one of Mr. Romney’s favorite novels.
    “I’m not in favor of his religion by any means,” Mr. Romney, a Mormon, said. “But he wrote a book called ‘Battlefield Earth’ that was a very fun science-fiction book.” Asked about his favorite book, Mr. Romney cited the Bible.

    “The probe and the pictures were on a metal that was rare everywhere and worth a clanking fortune. And Intergalactic paid the Psychlo governors sixty trillion Galactic credits for the directions and the concession. One gas barrage and we were in business.”

    “Fairy tales, fairy tales,” said Char. “Every planet I ever helped gut has some butt and crap story like that. Every one.” He yawned his face into a huge cavern. “All that was hundreds, maybe thousands of years ago. You ever notice that the public relations department always puts their fairy tales so far back nobody can ever check them?”

    “I’m going to go out and catch one of these things,” said Terl.

    “Not with any of my crews or equipment you ain’t,” said Char.

    Terl heaved his mammoth bulk off the seat and crossed the creaking floor to the berthing hatch.

    “You’re as crazy as a nebula of crap,” said Char.

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  20. mark () says:

    I don’t see how the presidential candidates will be anyone other than Guliani and Clinton. Bill Clinton is so massively popular with the public still that I think his campaigning with Hilary will easily push her to win the democratic candidacy and give her a real chance against Rudy.

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  21. sonic () says:

    “The Iraq war is a much more potent issue in the Democratic primary due to the base being so vehemently anti-war”

    So you are admitting that the Democrats’s base is the vast majority of the US population?

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  22. kiwi in america () says:

    Danyl
    Your point is? Its a novel for crying out loud.

    Mark
    Bill is still popular among Democrats and therein lies Hillary’s problem. Everytime they see her on stage she pales in comparison with him. He is warm – she is not; he was at heart a centrist who headed left at times to keep his base happy – she is a lefty at heart and is as centrist as she needs to be to get elected. He oozed charm and charisma – she has neither. Read the polls – her negatives keep rising and her base is ebbing away and that trend is occuring with no scandals swirling over her right now and her getting the usual positive coverage from her fawning fans in the mainstream media. The problem is the more democrat voters see her, the less they like her. Her tenancity and connections may yet win the day but her road to possible nomination will not be the foregone coronation she had anticipated. Oh and Guiliani and McCain both lead her easily in all the face to face polls sometimes by as much as 9 percentage points which in Presidential terms is a huge margin. Such polls are premature but at least show that in a General Election, she is not looking like beating the key Republican front runners – hence the nervousness amongst the party elite and donors.

    Sonic
    You have to differentiate between how Americans view the war generically (they don’t like it and don’t support it as you point out) versus how they see the best way ahead militarily. Recent polls universally reject withdrawal and also reject the Democrats attempts to play silly buggers with the funding. The Dems have to appear to their more anti-war base that they are doing something to stop the war but they stop short of using their new majority in Congress to formally defund the troops which would actually force Bush to withdraw. Radical anti-war Democrats forced their 1972 nominee (McGovern) into a more extreme anti Vietnam war platform than the general American populous could stomach and so, despite that war being unpopular (actually more unpopular than this war), Nixon was re-elected in a huge landslide.

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  23. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    Your point is? Its a novel for crying out loud.

    The point is pretty obvious but let’s spell it out just for KIA.

    In a political climate where every answer a candidate gives has been polled, focus-grouped and brainstormed into meaninglessness the occasional candid answer speaks a lot louder than the platitudes the GOP muppets regurgitate about how much they hate terrorists and gays and love embryos, God and Ronald Reagan. That Mitts favourite novel is a brainless potboiler sci-fi turkey tells us far more about his character than anything he said in the debate.

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  24. Max () says:

    Obama will do a much better job than the Bush/Cheyney Corporation which has murdered hundreds of thousands of Iraqi children and plans to do the same in Iran.

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  25. reid () says:

    Don’t discount Gore from this campaign. He has everything to gain from not announcing his candidacy for many months to come. He has enormous credibility from his environmental position, he is seen by many as the duly elected 43rd President, he has name recognition and credit-by-association with the memories from Clinton’s Administration.

    The sooner you announce, the more money you need to raise and the longer the opposition has to locate and highlight your defects. Only Gore could defeat Giuliani. McCain couldn’t – he is seen as a Clayton’s Republican and why have him when you could have the real thing? KIA is right on the Clinton analysis. She’s palpably incapable, and good riddance.

    Personally I believe Gore’s completely wrong on the climate change issue, but at least he detests *both* Clintons, and that’s a plus in my book.

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  26. reid () says:

    Max, Lee Iacocca agrees with you

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article17516.htm

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  27. Clint Heine () says:

    Reid, I agree completely, but hope that Gore stays the hell away from the White House.

    I wish that the truth behind Gores ridiculous claims he made in that mockumentary were exposed. I see that Gore has managed to avoid and run away from every single scientist or politician willing to debate with him.

    The Dems are obsessed with going back to the Clinton days, so by backing a “black Clinton” or Clintons wife, they will fill that desire easily.

    I am still picking a win for the GOP.

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  28. kiwi in america () says:

    Reid
    I agree with some of what you say about Gore-he would completely upset the apple cart on the Dems side. His global warming cred (undeserved in my opinion-his movie has been amply fisked by a number of climate experts) gives him an immediate media leg up. Remember back to 2000-Gore lost the unloosable election. In the debates with Bush he was useless, he lacks warmth and is an insufferable arrogant bore. No – the GOP would LOVE for Gore to win the nomination-they consider him an easy beat. I believe the candidate they fear the most is Obama.

    Danyl
    You clearly done know any scifi buffs. They read that kind of crap all the time and love it and yet the ones I know are fine upstanding, articulate intelligent people. You are really scraping the bottom of the barrel (too much reading Kos maybe) to throw this brickbat at Romney. Watch this space-he won the 1st Republican debate last night and gave a commanding and witty performance live on Jay Leno’s show 2 nights ago. Middle America are not going to say “what a dick – he reads B grade scifi novels”. David is right-the religion issue may be a clincher but all I know is that the influential Republicans I know who have spent time with Romney come away raving about the guy and become not just supporters but activists to help him. As you watch his progress through the critical stages of the primary season, it would appear that others share this sentiment.

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  29. Danyl Mclauchlan () says:

    Danyl you clearly done know any scifi buffs.

    Yeah, my years working in the IT industry and then at the science faculty at a university have kept me totally isolated from that demographic.

    What’s funny isn’t a candidate who likes science fiction – if Mitt announced he liked ‘Dune’, or ‘Enders Game’, or ‘The Moon is a Harsh Mistress’ I’d have been pretty impressed – the story is noteworthy because he liked a book that’s widely regarded as one of the worst ever written. If he declared that his favourite make of car was the Ford Edsel that would also be telling.

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  30. kiwi in america () says:

    Danyl
    LOL – yes I will readily concede that your exposure to the scifi buff demographic based on that employment history would be long and extensive. My point is you are posting about an inconsequential matter that will in no way detract from Romney’s appeal. If you read the assessment of the commentariat (not just conservative pundits and bloggers) concerning the 1st Republican debate, almost all picked Romney as the winner with numerous postive comments about his eloquence, humour, clarity and looking the most presidential. I go back to my original comment and that is watch Mitt Romney – he is the real deal. His debate performance will bump him even higher in the primary polls as, up until now, he has been less well known and less visible than Guiliani (who did poorly in the debate) and McCain.

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