"Whatever Happened To The Politics Of Hope?"

Today the Clinton and Obama campaigns demonstrated who is playing checkers and who is playing chess. I will not go through the full overblown silly brouhaha again, but rather fast forward to a desperate seeming Obama calling Sen. Clinton "Bush-Cheney Lite." Senator Clinton responded, and I think in devastating fashion:

SEN. CLINTON: "Well, this is getting kind of silly. I've been called a lot of things in my life but I've never been called George Bush or Dick Cheney certainly. We have to ask what's ever happened to the politics of hope?

Now I have long ridiculed this phony Politics of Hope as silly nonsense that bore no reality to the politics necessary in today's climate. But for Obama to so abruptly abandon the "high road' to attack Sen. Clinton when he has been reticent to be "partisan" in defending Democrats (or critcizing them) smacks of desperation. Obama began with a political (not a substantive) gaffe in the debate and now compounds the error. It further strengthens my view that he is not yet up to a serious run for President.

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    In other words, damned if he does (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:38:26 PM EST
    and damned if he doesn't, according to you.  Clinton sandbags him with a cheap shot, he's too soft.  He fights back after she calls him "irresponsible and frankly naive" and he's still at fault.

    He can't win with critics such as yourself and Jerome Armstrong.

    You know he screwed up twice (none / 0) (#2)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:40:37 PM EST
    and you wantr to take it out on me.

    Aexelrod is your problem.

    Bush Cheney Lite?  Nuts.

    I want him to be PARTISAN, not nasty in his own interest.

    You do not like the reality here. I understand that.

    Not my fault.


    No, I don't know it. (4.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:54:04 PM EST
    She endorses the Bush/Cheney policy of requiring substantial concessions--known in diplomaticspeak as 'preconditions'--before negotiating with regimes we don't like.

    She also is still taking the stance that meeting with icky foreign leaders could be used as a propaganda tool, diminishes the prestige of the office, etc etc.

    Which was the absurd crap the flying monkeys threw at Pelosi.  And now she's throwing at him.

    P.S.  Mitt Romney and John McCain have Hillary's back.  I guess agreeing with Republicans is less obnoxious then a lack of partisanship.


    Just silly (1.00 / 1) (#13)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:59:54 PM EST
    I'll forgive you because I know how hard it is to watch your guy screwing up.

    Doh (none / 0) (#34)
    by dead dancer on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 06:05:46 PM EST

    Actually, it's harder for me to see that (none / 0) (#35)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 06:26:15 PM EST
    he's 10 points behind Edwards in Iowa.  That, my friend, is really atrocious news.

    she called him naive (1.00 / 1) (#53)
    by Jlvngstn on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 10:54:13 AM EST
    his retort was fine.  You need valium

    If either of you know....? (none / 0) (#4)
    by magster on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:44:01 PM EST
    when will the polls start registering who is winning this dust-up?

    It is not the issue of the polls (none / 0) (#5)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:49:59 PM EST
    It is the issue of the candidate brand.

    Obama meitculously worked to build this "high road" brand for months and has now tossed it away in a second.

    He is "just another pol" now. Now I think the brand was a straijacket but he could have worked himself out of it gracefully and seamlessly.

    But by doing it this way and in such inflammatory fashion now he may just be adding this brand - phony.


    Pfft (none / 0) (#3)
    by Categorically Imperative on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:43:03 PM EST
    What cheap shot?  What Hillary did was standard rhetorical gamesmanship.  It's always been part of politics and always will be.  Obama is in a ditch and continuing to dig.  It appears he is well out of his depth, having been 'seasoned' in only one statewide election against a man so batcrap insane he might be unelectable in Utah, let alone Illinois.

    Geek is very smart (none / 0) (#6)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:50:39 PM EST
    but enthralled with Obama.

    I was the same way with Clark last cycle.


    Fair enough (none / 0) (#10)
    by Categorically Imperative on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:58:41 PM EST
    And I'm surprised to be in the position to defend Clinton, as there is much substance on which I disagree with her.  But as of late she's been hitting all the right notes (in and out of the debates).  Slightly OT, but I think it's telling that of the 'big three' in the Dem field, Clinton has been the only one front and center taking on O'Reilly in the Billo/Kos dustup.  I'm sure some see it as pure pander, but I think it speaks very well of her esp. since she's been dumped on by the netroots since the get-go.  

    Poltics is pander (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:59:18 PM EST
    I wish people would realize that.

    I've had my frustrations with Obama. (none / 0) (#11)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:59:07 PM EST
    I do think he needs to show more partisanship in addition to his efforts to reform the party.

    I do think that his liquid coal stance was dreadful.

    Most of all, I've been waiting for him to stop giving Clinton a free pass in the debates and in the campaign.  She's been cruising for a while now because no one will lay a glove on her.  Even Mr. Straight Talk Express II, John Edwards, won't criticize her by name himself.


    He needs someone better than Axelrod (none / 0) (#14)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:00:32 PM EST
    HE really does.

    As a proxy, I agree. (none / 0) (#18)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:06:14 PM EST
    In terms of messaging, I think they've allowed his campaign theme of reform and return to honest discussions of issues to be falsely painted as a wussy version of politics.

    See (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:09:48 PM EST
    I blame Axelrod for that.

    I really do not support Clinton's candidacy. But I simply do not see that Obama's campaig is doing the right things.

    I could be wrong of course but my critique is an honest one.


    Of course you're honest. (none / 0) (#24)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:21:38 PM EST
    I do think that Obama had to do this--really get in Hillary's face.

    He had to dispel the notion that he's all kumbayah.

    The key will be for him to use this as a teaching moment--to show that his "new kind of politics" is about substance and power, not about playing nice.


    He Seems Too Young (none / 0) (#38)
    by squeaky on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 08:22:37 PM EST
    But he is a star. He'll be back. Time to let him go, for this time 'round.

    by SiAtta5 on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 10:06:48 AM EST
    IN THOSE DEBATES:  I am sure that if he could "take her down" he would.  Debates are a difficult circumstance.  There you stand on a stage, in front of a microphone that picks up your breathing; knowing that the whole nation is watching/listening and you have only about ten seconds to craft an answer befitting a "president-to-be."  THAT is the situation for each debater.

    Hillary just seems to be able to get over the stage fright; and operates with a much faster "processor" --perhaps eight quad-core to Obama's one dual core.


    I generally characterize cheap shots (none / 0) (#8)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:56:30 PM EST
    as misstatements of what someone is saying.

    For instance, Obama did not state that he would 'promise' to meet with those leaders 'unconditionally.'  Yet, that is exactly what Clinton implied he said.  


    Oh it was a cheap shot (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 04:58:41 PM EST
    Basically Clinton lied about what Obama meant.

    But darn it Geek, this is what politics is.

    He needs to be smarter than this. He needs someone better than Axelrod.

    This is too big for Axelrod.


    Yes, but she also positioned herself rhetorically (4.00 / 1) (#16)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:03:07 PM EST
    too close to the Bush/Cheney position on things.  If you take the question literally, she is adopting their position, i.e. demanding preconditions for negotiations.

    This is a change election, and Clinton is desperately trying to sell herself as an 'agent of change.'

    This is nonsense, and Obama is demonstrating that by showing how she buys into the conventional DC wisdom that if the president meets with Hugo Chavez that the office is tarnished.

    Clinton's approach has been to blur their legislative records, so the only chance he's going to get to show real, demonstrable difference is rhetoric.


    Obama/Chavez summit (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by magster on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:16:09 PM EST
    Hugo: So, does the oval office smell like sulphur?

    Preparatory talks does not equal preconditions (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by debcoop on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 02:05:15 AM EST
    You are making a fundamental mistake, which no matter who you support for the nomination can have bad consequences.

    Preconditions such as Bush-Cheney have done with Korea, Iran and the Hamas means one is saying that we will not ever meet with you until you do the things that we want you to do.  We won't come to the negotiating table or have a meeting to discuss our differneces unless you agree ahead of time to do before the meeting the outcome one expects to have after the meeting.

    Bush Cheney said to Korea ..... stop making nuclear fuel in your neuclear reactors and after you do that then we'll talk to you about well....not making fuel in your nuclear reactors.  It is of course idiocy and self fulfilling in terms of accomplishing nothing but engendering hostility.

    What Clinton said is she would want to have prepartory talks at the lower diplomatics levels to feel out the terrain and the issues.  Clinton did not say NO TALK, she said YES TALK but let's explore the terrain between us first.  That is how diplomacy was conducted SUCCESSLY IN THE PAST PRIOR TO BUSH-CHENEY BY THE WAY.  Sure it's old style diplomacy, not the "new" way Obama, frankly I think stumbled into, but it's worked enormously when when the participants actually try to make something work.  

    Clinton is not Bush Lite and frankly as a Democrat I am horrified that you would give the Republicans such ammunition.


    Absolutely (none / 0) (#19)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:08:13 PM EST
    And well played, Obama could have very effectively positioned himself as the anti-Hillary on this and it would have mattered. If he doubled it up by flanking her on getting out of Iraq and he would have been able to really make some hay on this.

    But it needed to be played properly. And it was not.


    We'll see if it was well-played or not. (none / 0) (#28)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:37:58 PM EST
    Part of the subtext here is positioning himself against Edwards as the candidate who's willing to FIGHT the establishment.  

    A lot of Edwards supporters--the ones who support him because of his 2007 rhetoric--couldn't have been happy with "I agree with Hillary."

    He took a risk here, but he needs to as the guy behind in the polls.

    However, it was just plain stupid for Clinton to escalate this thing herself--candidates with a commanding lead don't do what she did.


    Well (none / 0) (#29)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:38:47 PM EST
    I think we've seen.

    No, this isn't a tactical, news cycle event. (none / 0) (#31)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:51:34 PM EST
    It's a strategic one.  It's a matter of ground and position--did Obama take over the ground as the authentic voice of change and paint Hillary as agreeing too much with Bush?  Did Hillary expose Obama as a rookie who is prone to make extreme statements and gaffes?

    We won't know the true fallout for about a month or so--the media and the voters still have to process it.


    Well (none / 0) (#15)
    by Categorically Imperative on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:01:20 PM EST
    You supply your own refutation.  First, you claim Clinton "misstated" what Obama said, then one sentence later you back of to what she "implied."  Painting a political opponent's ambiguous statement in an unfavorable light is not a cheap shot, it's campaigning.  

    What Obama said was a cheap shot.


    How was it a cheap shot? (none / 0) (#17)
    by Geekesque on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:04:51 PM EST
    The Bush/Cheny approach has been to demand substantive concessions--"preconditions"--before any negotiations can take place.

    Hillary's answer supported that position.  Her defense will be that she means different things by 'without precondition' or something, but it is the Light version of that policy.


    For one (none / 0) (#21)
    by Categorically Imperative on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:11:57 PM EST
    Neither of Obama's comments were limited in scope to the issue of meeting with unfriendly foreign leaders.  He basically framed Clinton's entire diplomatic strategy as Bush/Cheney light.  Second, you seem awful willing to slough over details -- like what Clinton's policy actually is -- in an effort to justify what Obama said.  You really think it's meaningless what her preconditions are?  That "Bush/Cheney light" is a fair characterization given the criminal nature of the current administration?

    Unconditionally (none / 0) (#57)
    by SiAtta5 on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 01:05:19 PM EST
    was part of the question Obama replied YES to. He failed to see the fine print.  He could have just said he made a mistake and that would have been consistent with the postive persona he has been trying to project.  Instead, he seems to be well on his way to a melt-down or self-destruct.  He should know when to stop digging.

    I commented in that post (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:22:04 PM EST
    and I really think Matt misses the point that this is all politics, not substance.

    BTW, I have to delete your post Geek as you screwed up the margins.

    On Hillary and Obama dust-up (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by SiAtta5 on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:58:17 PM EST
    The question during the debate was: "would you commit to personally meet with  the leaders of these countries without any pre-conditions in your first year?"

    Obama gave what he thought was a great answer; Clinton saw it as not paying enough attention to detail or the fine print--what an inexperienced and unseasoned leader in international politics would do.

    I think that Obama is digging a deeper hole for himself by name-calling.  He should just take this as a round that is scored for Clinton.  He should look for the next round that he might be able to win.  By speaking and acting the way he is right now, he is simply demonstrating for all to see that he really is young and inexperienced and quite wet behind the years.

    Agreed (none / 0) (#41)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 08:27:32 PM EST
    You missstate the question. (none / 0) (#55)
    by Geekesque on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 11:58:31 AM EST
    The question was whether he'd be WILLING to meet with them, not whether he'd COMMIT to meeting with them.

    The Clinton backers continue to push this falsehood.


    I think you mis-heard the question (none / 0) (#58)
    by SiAtta5 on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 01:16:48 PM EST
    check the video file of the debate.  The question definitely specified UNCONDITIONALLY. Clinton took that into consideration hence the way she answered. Obama did not focus on the UNCONDITIONAL element of the question hence his answer.  The implications are clear:  Hillary has seen this sort of thing happen over and over before as part of her experience and Obama hasn't been through enough.  There is a way he could effectively deal with the "experience thing" but then, I am supporting Hillary.

    Obama's Rookie Mistakes (3.00 / 2) (#43)
    by JoeCHI on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 09:53:15 PM EST
    For the moment, let's leave aside the issue of whether a President should squander the "Coin of the Realm" meeting with Enemies of the State individually and without pre-condition (I disagree with Obama here, FYI).  Still, this issue speaks to a larger concern I have with candidate Obama: his tendency to be inattentive to the details.

    In every debate, Obama has proven himself to be unable to grasp the parameters and specifics of a question. As a consequence, his answers are often ill-suited and open to exploitation.

    With an eye to the general election, why should the Democrats elect someone whose rookie carelessness makes him vulnerable to ruinous accusations and characterizations?

    For example, the day after the YouTube debate, the Miami Herald had a headline that read:

    Obama, Edwards say they would meet with Castro, Chavez.


    It doesn't take much imagination to envision these same headlines featured ad nauseam within the deluge of GOP campaign ads hitting the Florida airwaves morphing Democratic Presidential nominee Obama with Castro and Ahmadinejad. Tell me again the upside for the Democrats in needlessly angering the Cubans and the Jews?

    Why should the Democrats elect a candidate who would so recklessly hand Florida's electoral votes to the GOP, and on a silver-platter, nonetheless?

    The GOP will eat Obama alive on this one.

    Eat. Obama. Alive.

    Bull (none / 0) (#60)
    by Aaron on Sat Jul 28, 2007 at 01:10:39 AM EST
    Broward and Dade County, where all the Jews and Cubans are in South Florida, are both solid Democratic strongholds, that have absolutely no chance of going Republican.

    Also, South Florida is no longer a retirement home for Jews nor was it ever politically controlled by the Cubans, let's put that myth to bed forever.  It's an eclectic progressive heavily developed urban area, that draws people from all over the world.

    It's the rest of the state, were all the white Christians are, that swings it red.

    You obviously don't know anything about Florida politics.


    So what? (none / 0) (#26)
    by Categorically Imperative on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:24:44 PM EST
    First of all, what Matt Yglesias happens to think about a subject isn't necessarily gospel.  Aside from that, Bush won't meet with those listed because he views them as "evildoers," or because it better suits his neocon masters to avoid such meetings, or because God told him not to, or some combination of the three.  Whatever one thinks of the "power and prestige" point, that is not Dubya's rationale.  Heck, he thinks the unitary executive can do as it damn well pleases; in his mind not meeting with a foreign leader because of fears of diminished prestige is probably seen as weakness.

    Missing his point. (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by Ramo on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:36:04 PM EST
    The issue is not whether Ahmedinejad or Kim Jung Il are unsavory characters.  Everyone accepts that.  The problem is that Bush views diplomatic relations  an endorsement.  Whether or not Clinton buys into this frame, she's certainly acting like she does.  That's why she's making hay about "propaganda purposes" and "diminishing the power and prestige of the President."

    His point is ridiculous (none / 0) (#42)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 08:28:32 PM EST
    as the reality is he and Clinton would do it exactly the same way.

    The REAL issue here is the political mistake by Obama frankly.


    Her point is (none / 0) (#54)
    by Jlvngstn on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 11:03:57 AM EST
    you see you start off in a negative sum situation in your argument BTD.  When Nixon met with China, did the world fall apart?  When Carter met with Egypt and Israel, was there an accord signed?  Kim Jong Il is a nut bag, but until the UN does something about him he needs to be met with.  How many years of not talking have we had?  In that time he has built a nuke (reportedly) and hundreds of thousands of N. Koreans have died due to starvation, malnutrtition etc.  Ahmadinejad is a whack job, but should be met with also.  European leaders do and as the most powerful nation on the planet (but who gives a sh*t when you are the most incarcerated, least covered, and poorly educated but i digress).  

    The arrogance of our country, "I don't want to be used as propaganda" is bs.  Nixon had a ton of balls to meet with China and Carter made Egypt and Israel happen.  

    I don't know if Obama is right for the job but he is right about dialogue and not concerning himself with "propaganda" arguments.  30 years of not meeting with them has netted us what?  One nuke and one on the way.  

    If you are not going to have dialogue than at least do it like Reagan did, kill one of their kids bombing their residences Ghaddafi has not been heard from since, right?  We can be "soldiers" or we can be diplomats.  I prefer diplomacy and that means you actually have to speak to them.


    Big Tent's Spin Doesn't Impress Me (none / 0) (#30)
    by Aaron on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:46:53 PM EST

    "The general principle that I was laying out is that we should not be afraid as America to meet with anybody" (Barack Obama).

    And when did Hugo Chávez become the mortal enemy of the United States, he has a problem with George W. Bush, and who can blame him for that, and I do remember Bill Clinton meeting with him.

    I find the question problematic for including a range of leaders from elected presidents to wanton dictators. Iran, Syria, North Korea, Cuba and Venezuela , Venezuela?  That country certainly doesn't belong on the list.

    "The Bush administration's policy is to say that we will not talk to these countries unless they meet various preconditions. That's their explicit policy," Obama said.

    "Nobody expects that you would suddenly just sit down with them for coffee without having done the appropriate groundwork. But the question was, would you meet them without preconditions, and part of the Bush doctrine has been to say no," he said.

    "You'll have to ask Senator Clinton what differentiates her position from theirs," Obama added.

    "The fact of the matter is when we talk to world leaders, it give us the opportunity to speak about our ideals, our values and our interests, and I am not afraid to have that conversation with anybody," he said.

    Obama says Clinton has foreign policy like Bush's

    And Big Tent isn't helping to spin this for the Hillary campaign?  Yeah right.

    I understand the political opening that Obama gave the Clinton campaign, but I also see the folly in the United States continuing to act as if it's above the rest of the world.  A president who is willing to meet with any of these leaders in the hopes of bringing about real change, is a president who wants to move forward into a new century, and not drag us back to the Cold War mindset where we demonized those we are at odds with.  

    A president who would meet with Fidel Castro, or his brother, is a president who has a good chance of normalizing relations with that country, something that should've happened decades ago.  The people of Cuba suffer badly as a result of our political stance, but it hasn't hurt the Castro regime at all.  And the people of North Korea are starving to death in the tens of thousands every year, while the United States and China sit by and do nothing.  It's time for a US president to start doing what US presidents were meant to do, move the world forward into a better tomorrow and stand up for the people.

    I imagine that Hillary has similar ideas, but if she doesn't have the guts to come out and be bold, and speak up for the ideals that this country is supposed to stand for, someone certainly should.  And if Clinton is going to try to portray Obama as a loose cannon, naïve and out of his depth for saying the things that she is thinking, well I guess that makes her politically savvy, but it also makes her two-faced and disingenuous.

    Boy, you just wasted lots of hot air (none / 0) (#33)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 05:58:21 PM EST
    All I can say is: it's nice not to have a candidate yet.

    I agree with Obama, she is Bush-lite (none / 0) (#36)
    by yourstruly on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 06:37:34 PM EST
    if not for her husbands shameful lies about wmd, Bush would never have sold his. She could of course deny knowledge, but we're talking court of public opinion here.

    If I was Obama, that's the case I'd make too.

    Not very (none / 0) (#40)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 08:27:15 PM EST
    Politics of Hope of you.

    Who cares? (none / 0) (#37)
    by DA in LA on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 08:17:57 PM EST
    This is such a meaningless moment in the campaign that I don't even think it's worth mentioning.

    IMO, Clinton made the gaffe in the debate when answering the question.  What's the difference between her answer and what Bush would say?  I think she is a terrible choice for President.  She's the only Democrat in the field who I would not vote for.

    Disagree (none / 0) (#39)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 08:26:42 PM EST
    It is a turning point for Obama, and a bad one.

    Too bad (none / 0) (#45)
    by DA in LA on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 11:33:02 PM EST
    The turning point for Hillary was when she entered the race.

    46% disapproval rating.  Almost half of voters already say they won't vote for her.  She is the only person who could possibly lose the election to a Republican.

    And I don't support Obama, but I may actually vote for him if he is the nominee.


    You'll vote GOP if he is not? (none / 0) (#46)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 11:39:36 PM EST
    I Agree (none / 0) (#48)
    by Cheesehead on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 03:27:33 AM EST
    I'll never vote for Hillary, and Obama has no experience.  What's the problem with Richardson?  Is he too centrist?  He has basically the same position that Obama tried to vocalize, plus he's already met with Kim Jong Il and Chavez, and shown that diplomacy can be a position of strength.  Unfortunately, he's not photogenic, and doesn't have a presidential spouse who's fondly remembered (only in comparison to the current president).  

    Does anyone remember that most of the WTO and trade deals that have economically destroyed much of the middle-class happened under good'ol Bill's administration?  Bush's administration needs no detailing, its been a disaster at all levels.

    I will not stand to have anymore Shrubs or Clintons in charge of anything.


    So you would vote for more of the same McCain (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by Molly Bloom on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 07:12:46 AM EST
    over HRC?

    Make no mistake, all of the likely GOP candidates are swearing allegiance to Bush and the war (just not Bush's immigration policies).


    Agree (none / 0) (#59)
    by SiAtta5 on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 01:21:58 PM EST
    If there was any doubt before as to his inexperience, he certainly has dispelled it with his continuing tirade against Clinton.  This behavior taints any future runs for the presidency he might have.  It is now or never for him and he certainly seems to be going for broke.

    I missed all this saying good bye to another (none / 0) (#44)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jul 26, 2007 at 10:25:54 PM EST
    friend going back to Iraq.  Tomorrow is a surprise good bye party but he doesn't know that, he thought that tonight was it.  This all seems so silly in that light.  I guess it is narrow minded of me but while they are being silly with each other campaigning can they also remember to get us out of Iraq?

    Not Ready for Prime Time (none / 0) (#50)
    by DCDemocrat on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 08:04:36 AM EST
    I completely occur that, " . . . (H)e is not yet up to a serious run for President."  I hope he will be one day.

    The Republicans are in deadly earnest.  They will exploit any advantage.  They are completely without scruples.  What Hillary did was hit Obama with an ostrich feather against his upper arm, and Obama melted down.  This is not our standard bearer.  He is not ready for prime time.

    It may be great exercise to discuss candidates (none / 0) (#52)
    by SiAtta5 on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 10:21:44 AM EST
    and their stand/s on issues.  But I think that in the final moments of checking off a name at the voting booth, it will all boil down to which name can roll off someone's tongue when they say:
    President Rudy Giulliani? President Barak Obama, President Mitt Romney, President John Edwards  or President Hillary Clinton.  

    Of course the process should be more than just their names.  But I think their names will have a lot of impact on that decision making.

    Sound and fury... (none / 0) (#56)
    by Dadler on Fri Jul 27, 2007 at 12:10:17 PM EST
    ...signifying nothing.  

    Wake me when something actually happens, when a real and imaginative idea and plan of action are proposed.

    If pundits don't shape public opinion anymore, then neither do campaigning politicians.

    Undecided wins the day.