Righty Talker Smerconish Endorses Obama Over Clinton, Springsteen Too

By Big Tent Democrat

Conservative Philly radio talk show host Michael Smerconish (he is on MSNBC a lot and is buddies with Tweety I think) has endorsed Barack Obama. I suppose this is good for Obama but it does make me scratch my head:

I'm still a Republican, and while I won't have a vote in the battle between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, like everyone else, I have an opinion as to the better of the two. It's Obama. I've watched virtually all the Democratic debates. Spent time reading the policy papers. Read each of their memoirs. There are few discernible differences between the two on the issues (she wants an individual mandate on health care; he's more anxious to leave Iraq). Each offers a similarly liberal agenda that will cause me angst in the fall.

But right now, one is more focused on an issue of paramount concern to me - the failure to avenge the deaths of innocent Americans by bringing Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri to justice. And that's Obama.

(Emphasis supplied.) Has Obama been talking a lot about bin Laden and al-Zawahiri lately? I guess I missed that. Anyway, FWIW.

So does Bruce Springsteen.

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    My guess (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by andgarden on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:26:39 AM EST
    He knows better how to run against Obama in the fall. He worked for Frank Rizzo in the 80s.

    HAHAHAHAHA (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by madamab on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:28:55 AM EST
    Notice Smerconish doesn't say he'll vote for Obama in the fall. His endorsement is primary-only.

    Smerconish will be a good soldier and vote for McCain in November. I don't think he has a lot of credibility here. :-)

    Job Requirement (5.00 / 3) (#4)
    by Athena on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:33:11 AM EST
    This guy has been sucking up on MSNBC for months as he tries to join the big boys MSM club.  Support for Obama is a requirement.

    I don't care for him but (none / 0) (#10)
    by ksh on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:43:29 AM EST
    he's been reading Obama's books to his listeners for some time now.  I think he actually has some admiration, but I agree he'll go for McCain in the Fall. I take this quasi-endorsement with a grain of salt.

    It's refreshing, though, to read a republican who's not endorsing Clinton because he thinks McCain can beat her.


    smerconish (5.00 / 8) (#5)
    by Turkana on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:33:54 AM EST
    soon to be a new hero of the new left shrillosphere.

    Watch them painfully try (5.00 / 4) (#7)
    by andgarden on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:35:00 AM EST
    to adopt his reasoning too.

    That's just brilliant Turkana (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by ksh on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:46:27 AM EST
    can I borrow that?  Not that I want to be shrill or anything...

    Who knows (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by OxyCon on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:34:54 AM EST
    ...what Smerconish's real motives are? He's been promoting the hell out of Obama for awhile now.
    I would guess that he's trying to help pick the weaker candidate

    I know why... (none / 0) (#54)
    by FlaDemFem on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:42:02 PM EST
    and I have said so before. I am in horse racing and breeding, and I know when someone is trying to send in a "rabbit". Here is my comment explaining what a rabbit is..
    A "rabbit" is a very speedy horse who isn't up to the distance of the race. The reason one enters a "rabbit" is to kill off the competition by getting them in a speed duel with the "rabbit" and tiring them out. Then the "rabbit's" stable mate can come from behind and not have a lot of ground to make up and not have the main competition to deal with since the "rabbit" wore them out early.

    The GOP is using the media to help Obama kill off Hillary Clinton, who is the one they are worried about. Obama is easy to deal with in the GE, I am sure the media already has the info that will be used against him after the convention, if he is the nominee. Anyone who thinks this media fawning is going to go on after the nominee is named is living in a dream world.

    Obama, and the Democratic Party, are being set up for a very nasty ambush. And, frankly, I think Obama deserves everything he gets. I am just sorry he will be taking the Democratic Party down with him.


    They are setting up the GE for an easy McCain win. Obama is the rabbit. Hillary is the one they are worried about getting the nomination. She can win the GE, Obama can't, and the Republicans know it. So does the MSM.


    Yup. (none / 0) (#59)
    by Lora on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 06:06:03 PM EST
    I thought he already had (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by bjorn on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:40:22 AM EST
    endorsed because he is on MSNBC singing Obama's praises all the time.

    There ya go! (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by vicsan on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:46:26 AM EST
    That's who the Republicans want to run against. He's an easy target in the GE.

    Bruce! Aww, drat. (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by jawbone on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:53:03 AM EST
    A bard, not a political wonk. Doesn't he recall Obama calling unions "special interests" to be fought against (until he began courting the unions).

    What you see. . . (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by LarryInNYC on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:54:20 AM EST
    is what you see.  This guy dislikes Clinton and he wants to smash Osama.  Therefore, Obama must be better on this issue than Clinton.

    So does Bruce (5.00 / 3) (#22)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:55:24 AM EST
    Get a unity pony?

    Too many unity ponies in the pasture (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by Cream City on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:00:58 PM EST
    now, so I will not settle for anything less than a unicorn, complete with a shiny rainbow overhead.

    That's what the unity pony looks like to some of Obama's fans, I think -- and I envision that My Little Pony unicorn with the rainbow mane that my daughter so loved and was much advertised.  She is of the generation that is so fannish for Obama, so I suspect that is the pony picture that is frolicking in their fantasies.


    R's are also incompetent (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:11:27 PM EST
    On most issues.

    The lynch pin of Obama's position on this issue is he made a big speech, a prepared speech where he said "If Mussharraff will not act, we will", and then a week later in a debate he said "If Mussharraff can not act, we should."

    The man knows what words mean, that much is true.

    But whether the man, or anyone he surrounds himself with have any understanding of the situation is still a matter of some debate.

    The Obama supporter, maybe someone like Bruce Springsteen, will tell me not to listen too closely to Obama's words when Obama's words betray his attitude and incompetence, and only listen to the words that make people feel good inside, indeed to quibble over a simple verb ("Will" or "Can") is small minded.

    I still think Obama figured it was not only Musharraff's responsibility but that Musharraff was in a position to do so.

    And then someone finally pointed out to Obama, "Uh, Barack, the situation in Pakistan is such that Musharraff doesn't really have much control over that border area and the surrounding towns and communities."

    And so he changed the verb.

    OK (none / 0) (#33)
    by squeaky on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:24:43 PM EST
    "Uh, Barack, the situation in Pakistan is such that Musharraff doesn't really have much control over that border area and the surrounding towns and communities."

    Then we should stop giving him a 300 million a year of unaccountable cash if he is not in control of the terrorists in his country. The six billion dollars we have donated to Musharraff's luxury lifestyle is not buying us anything.

    ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- After the United States has spent more than $5 billion in a largely failed effort to bolster the Pakistani military effort against Al Qaeda and the Taliban, some American officials now acknowledge that there were too few controls over the money. The strategy to improve the Pakistani military, they said, needs to be completely revamped.



    His Policy statement (none / 0) (#34)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:32:04 PM EST
    Was not that we should cut off funds.

    One would argue that the money is buying security in the regions Mussharraf does have some visibility into.

    It's a different discussion.  It's something worth reconsidering.


    BS (none / 0) (#40)
    by squeaky on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:46:14 PM EST
    From the speech.

    As President, I would make the hundreds of millions of dollars inU.S. military aid to Pakistan conditional, and I would make our conditions clear: Pakistan must make substantial progress in closing down the training camps, evicting foreign fighters, and preventing the Taliban from using Pakistan as a staging area for attacks inAfghanistan.


    The Policy Statement I was referring too! (none / 0) (#43)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:00:07 PM EST
    You are changing the subject.

    If you want to talk about the funds, we can.

    But that's a different discussion.

    So let's discuss that now!  I wouldn't make those funds conditional based on Mussharraf's ability to capture OBL and do the things that are described above by Obama.  Musharraf may not have the control over the regions where OBL lives and where the recruiting and training goes on and to expect him to be able to have such control might be a sign of incompetence.

    But we can discuss the funds issue.  It should be made conditional based on Musharraff's policies in the areas that he does have control over.  

    Cause that is something can definitely be improved.  And improving that would make it less easier for Osama's ilk to radicalize moderates.

    Even the statement you just provided, Obama is basically expecting Musharraff to be able to do something that he could not do, and even if Musharraff tried to do it, it would render himself powerless in the areas he does at least have some control right now.


    Policy Statement? (none / 0) (#57)
    by squeaky on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 03:56:42 PM EST
    I am hardly changing the subject. Not sure what policy statement you mean. The quote above was a statement of his policy towards Pakistan from a speech given at the Woodrow Wilson Center aka the Council on Foreign Relations.

    Pakistanis responded to Obama's remarks (none / 0) (#46)
    by Josey on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:13:39 PM EST
    by protesting and burning U.S. flags.
    And then Bush sent Musharref $250M to counter Obama's attack. I'll look for that AP article- yet another instance where the TV networks concealed info about Obama.

    Endorsement makes sense (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by santarita on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:11:31 PM EST
    Obama does seem slightly more willing to use unilateral preemptive military strikes than Clinton is.  But for me this is not a positive.  In fact, his stance on the use of military force is one of the reasons I am perplexed as to why he has become the darling of the anti-war factions.  Othen than a lucky guess in 2002, his creds on the issue of unilateral preemptive force are not impressive.

    Because those factions aren't anti-war (none / 0) (#29)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:13:22 PM EST
    They are anti-Clinton.

    Indeed. (none / 0) (#30)
    by madamab on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:17:20 PM EST
    The only truly anti-war candidate in this race was Dennis Kucinich.

    Just for me (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by kenoshaMarge on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:57:42 PM EST
    endorsements for the most part don't mean diddly. I am perhaps most impressed by Wed Clark's endorsement since I respect him very highly.

    As for Smerconish? Why would any one care? Does he know either candidate? Does he share any of the same issues that liberals voters have? I've seen him on Tweety's Idiot Hour back in the days when I still watched and he's just another conservative blowhard IMHO.

    Springsteen? Not about to burn any of my CD's cause he isn't endorsing my candidate but once again, I don't care.

    I am quite capable of reading about and investigating what candidates have done, not just said, and don't need some celebrity or Right Wing Talk Show Cretin to tell me how to vote.

    And for me (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by madamab on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:11:01 PM EST
    and I think that anyone assuming that a celebrity endorsement will change working-class voters' minds is being...elitist.



    Does he dislike McCain that much? (none / 0) (#3)
    by Joan in VA on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:30:17 AM EST
    Or is he just trying to monkey around with the Dem primary?
    Guess he just remembered the Pakistan comment from awhile back.

    That's all I could think of: Obama saying he would (none / 0) (#12)
    by jawbone on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:45:57 AM EST
    just go after OBL wherever he was, would cross border into Pakistan, etc. Supposed to add "hot pursuit," which I think has some basis in international law.  Just bombing areas where he might be, not so much.

    But if there are international legal beagles here who know this subject, please let me know what the situation actually is.

    I recall a call-in show on WNYC here in NYC about that time, and the editor of a newspaper aimed at Pakistani immigrants said the Pakistani community was very angry about Obama's statement that he would invade Pakistan and, iirc, callers backed that up.

    Anecdotal, but the editor did have his finger on the pulse of the Pakistani community.  They do have family and friends still in Pakistan--probably don't want to see the war move into more of their homeland (use of "homeland" in the old sense of country where immigrant came from).


    Obama Had No "Plan" (none / 0) (#24)
    by Athena on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:59:56 AM EST
    Joe Biden pointed out in the debates that Obama's so-called "plan" re: Pakistan is already US policy.  The lazy MSM has never reported that.  

    I'm amazed how much restraint Biden showed in those debates, when rank novices were getting credit for "bold plans" were neither bold nor new.

    Every time Obama tries to claim credit for the US government doing what he has "called for" in Pakistan - it just proves Biden's point.  


    Haha BTD (none / 0) (#9)
    by diplomatic on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:40:45 AM EST
    That you thought Michael Smerconish was important enough to cited on the front page is an indication that this is a slow day I guess.

    I thought he was a big Philly radio guy (none / 0) (#19)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:53:29 AM EST
    In the Tank (none / 0) (#23)
    by Athena on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:55:34 AM EST
    He's a legend, according to MSNBC.

    In some segments I guess (none / 0) (#26)
    by andgarden on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:02:19 PM EST
    He wasn't any help to George W. in 2004.

    As gratifying as it would be (none / 0) (#11)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:45:32 AM EST
    If you're a terrorist, being brought to justice works for you because it turns you into a martyr and the underlying things that radicalize moderates still exist.

    I know folks like Feingold like to make the argument that Iraq was a diversion on the real world on terror, and it's a fine argument, it even frames Republicans as weak on National Security.

    What I don't see is the follow through.  The argument only exists rhetorically.  None of the people who make this argument are drawing up plans to actually do what it takes to chop off the head of Al-qaeda (even if such a thing actually exists at this point), and none of them have the support of military leaders who would be inclined to support that plan.

    None of the folks I'm talking about wake up every morning thinking about getting OBL.

    They wake up every morning thinking about how to bring the troops home, and the argument that it was a diversion on the real war on terror is a supporting argument for that cause.

    I feel a little sorry for Smerconish if he actually trusts Obama on this issue.

    I think most of us know he's gaming the primary like any other republican would.

    That includes Rush telling people to vote for Cinton too.

    Primaries should be popular vote and closed to Democrats who voted Dem in the last election.

    That'll put an end to this crap.

    No way of knowing how an individual voted in the (none / 0) (#16)
    by jawbone on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:50:36 AM EST
    general elections--or there shouldn't be a way of knowing!

    So, until the cognitive chips are implanted, we'll have to go with registration. Or, as some states do, just have the free-for-all of open primaries.

    Actually, if both parties have contests going on, usually not much of a problem. It is when one is settled and the other not.

    The Dems have proportional delegates, which began back when minorities were completely kept out of party politics. It takes longer to get to the winning number of delegates--or not even get there, as will most likely happen this year.  

    BTW, did Barney Franks yesterday say Puerto Rico should not have a voice in the selection of the nominee?


    That should be the intent (none / 0) (#20)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:53:53 AM EST
    I don't know how you get rid of folks who are showing up to vote for the person they want to run against.

    Not the candidate they want to win.


    So (none / 0) (#15)
    by cmugirl on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:46:49 AM EST
    Are we going to hear from the usual suspects?  Isn't this a bit like Rush telling everyone to vote for Clinton? My guess is no - they will be mute on this.

    Is the Springstein endorsement because Jeralyn (none / 0) (#17)
    by fuzzyone on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 11:52:10 AM EST
    put up the Manfred Mann version of Blinded by the Light the other day?  Might have pissed him off.

    Funny. (none / 0) (#39)
    by Maria Garcia on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:44:55 PM EST
    Springsteen went all out for Kerry. (none / 0) (#48)
    by felizarte on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:19:24 PM EST
    mayb e he wants to lose again.

    LOL - for god's sake don't play (none / 0) (#51)
    by ruffian on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:30:49 PM EST
    the Pointers Sisters version of "Fire".  No telling what Bruce will do.

    Splitting Hairs (none / 0) (#25)
    by squeaky on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:01:15 PM EST
    Obama was overt in saying that upon actionable intelligence he would bomb terrorists along in Pakistan near the Afghan border. Clinton essentially said the same thing but in less direct terms. Guess R's like the overt tough talk better than couched aggression.

    Obama's (none / 0) (#31)
    by sas on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:20:52 PM EST
    creds - none are impressive.

    If Smerconish endorsed Clinton (none / 0) (#32)
    by stillife on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:23:59 PM EST
    I'm sure many Obama supporters would cite it as proof that she's a Republican in disguise.  Now those same people will probably say that it shows Obama's post-partisan appeal.  

    Who thinks the Springsteen endorsement (none / 0) (#35)
    by Faust on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:36:23 PM EST
    will be significant? Just curious what people think. Some news feeds seem to be treating it as a big deal...maybe because it will be seen as a counterweight to bittergate?

    didn't help Kerry much :-) (none / 0) (#38)
    by RalphB on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:44:15 PM EST
    Not a counterweight (none / 0) (#41)
    by cannondaddy on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:55:28 PM EST
    but a media conclusion to a story that only existed in the media to begin with.

    Linking cultural values (none / 0) (#49)
    by Edgar08 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:25:22 PM EST
    To economic prosperity is a soul crushing revelation about a politician.

    I think that was the intent (none / 0) (#52)
    by ruffian on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:36:19 PM EST
    Seems like Obama has a few of these endorsements in his pocket that he pulls out when he needs help with a particular group. Working man?  Let's bring out the Springsteen Letter!

    So who will he pull out when he wants to make amends with us 'women of a certain age', or as I prefer to call us, "Hillaries Hotties"? Keep in mind it will be someone condescending that will just insult us even more. Maybe George Hamilton.


    Hasn't Bruce been singing for more than 25 years? (none / 0) (#53)
    by davnee on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:38:54 PM EST
    Just checking, because he's been singing about stuff that Obama says has only occurred to people to think and feel in the last 25 years.

    Yeah (none / 0) (#55)
    by ruffian on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:45:33 PM EST
    He should ask Bruce what he thought about those Republican ideas in the 80's.

    I have tickets to see Brice here in Orlando Saturdya night.  I wish I could bring in a sign that says 'count my vote'.  Or tell him that on election day I plan to "Hide 'neath the covers and study my tears"


    Might be significant (none / 0) (#56)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 03:14:59 PM EST
    to Springsteen's record sales to the younger more-record-buying set.

    I know (none / 0) (#37)
    by sas on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 12:42:15 PM EST

    He's from my area, the Philly burbs.

    His hometown area is trendy, affluent, suburban - typical elitist.

    .....not surprised in his "enlightenment" to Obama.

    a joker and the joke (none / 0) (#47)
    by drewohio1 on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:15:54 PM EST
    yep and it goes hand in hand with every other msm bull. vote obama now and then after he is dem nominee, we will crack his back and bury him with just the things hillary has mentioned in the last months..... in other words why do they want this preacher in the race , because they know that Hillary will win over Mccain any day of the week.

    About Osama (none / 0) (#50)
    by felizarte on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 01:27:40 PM EST
    A very cynical friend of mind commented to me that Osama bin laden was probably killed at ToraBora and they have just kept this information secret.  Because they had to continue his being alive and a threat to justify going into Iraq.  That is why every time Bush was in a bind with his Iraq policy, the come out with some statement from Osama, using old footage, and audio tape only.  He also said that at some point shortly before the election, they will finally announce his death to help the republican enemy.  It may be some kind of raid somewhere where he is going to be identified as one of the corpses.  I told him he was just being too conspiratorial and that Bush couldn't be that devious. Then he said, "you've seen this too many times in hollywood movies . . . how easily it could be done."  I am beginning to wonder if he was right all along.

    So, Obama is the nominee; he will harp on Osama bin Laden; McCain will defend the administration as making some progress; and presto! News of Osama's death and McCain wins.

    so, (none / 0) (#58)
    by cpinva on Wed Apr 16, 2008 at 04:53:17 PM EST
    who is paris hilton endorsing? since we're hitting all the intellectual heavyweights, just thought i'd bring her up.

    aside from the less than bright comments sen. obama made, regarding bombing pakistan (probably not the best way to get one guy.), what else has he said about his plans to capture/kill osama bin laden?