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Latina Lista: News from the Latinx perspective > Palabra Final > Politics > Latest NBC poll shows why it’s a bad idea to suspend presidential campaigns

Latest NBC poll shows why it’s a bad idea to suspend presidential campaigns

LatinaLista — In a poll that was just broadcast on the NBC nightly news on whether people approved or disapproved of the government bailout of Wall Street, it was the lowest number that spoke volumes.
The difference between the percentage of people approving and disapproving the bailout was only by a couple of numbers — in the low 30s. Yet, it was the 28 percent who had no opinion that was so newsworthy and underscores the fact that the last thing that John McCain should do is suspend his campaign.

Voters turn out in full force and support for their candidates.
Why?
For most people, financial-speak is as foreign as Spanish is to those who don’t know it. Wall Street is a country for the financially elite — at least, that’s the impression of many people who live paycheck to paycheck. Though it’s understood that what’s happening will eventually hit everyone’s pocketbooks, the average person’s understanding of what’s going on and how to fix it is pretty dismal.
What’s better understood and more assuring is candidates stumping for office. The more immediate need is for both candidates to continue with their campaigns because it’s the one time that everyday people feel like Washington notices them and is listening to them — something needed in these trying times. After all, these guys are in the backyards of people they rarely if ever visit while they’re in office.
If anything, the presidential campaigns are the times that voters can “reach out and touch”, literally, the team that will occupy the White House.
It defies logic that McCain would think he’s setting a leadership example by leaving the voters behind and returning to Washington when there are so many other capable Senators on hand to lend their voices and votes to the bailout.
What the country needs right now is not a suspension of the campaign, the one thing that serves as a good distraction and further allows voters to hear the candidates during a national crisis, but a debate between them that will clue us in on how well they understand what’s happening with the economy.

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Comment(24)

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    September 24, 2008 at 8:45 pm

    By postponing the debate
    McCain said he was putting the good of the country ahead of politics, but his announcement was clearly a political move. It was an attempt to outmaneuver Obama on an issue — the economy — that has been hurting McCain as his rival continued to gain in polls.
    It has become clear that no consensus has developed to support the administration’s proposal,” McCain said. “I do not believe that the plan on the table will pass as it currently stands, and we are running out of time.”
    E
    McShame thinks he can make us think he is some kind SUPERHERO that can save America, by going back to Washington and he thinks Americans are too stupid to see past his antics.
    I also think he is showing us he cant walk and chew gum at the same time. What is he going to do if he is President and has to deal with several issues at the same time.
    ~~~
    But Democratic Congressman Barney Frank, chairman of the House committee shepherding the bailout plan, said all sides were getting close to a deal and accused McCain of “trying to take credit for something that’s already happening without him.”
    Stephen Wayne, professor of government at Georgetown University in Washington, said he understood McCain’s attempt to put off the foreign policy debate because the U.S. economic crisis was likely to “swallow up McCain’s strength on international relations.”
    “I don’t know what would be gained in stopping his campaign,” said Wayne, a presidential historian and student of the 2008 campaign.
    E
    Anyone who has followed McCain through the years can see ROVE is at the helm. This is not the John McCain I know. This is ROVE’S McShame!
    ~~~
    But McCain beat Obama to the punch with the first public statement, saying the Bush plan to prop up the financial community seemed headed for defeat and a bipartisan solution was needed urgently.
    Obama repeatedly stressed at his news conference that he called McCain first to propose that they issue a joint statement in support of a package to help fix the economy as soon as possible. He said McCain called back several hours later, as Obama was leaving a rally in Florida, and agreed to the idea of a statement but also said he wanted to postpone the debate and hold joint meetings in Washington.
    Obama said he suggested they first issue a joint statement showing bipartisanship.
    “When I got back to the hotel, he had gone on television to announce what he was going to do,” Obama said.
    In rejecting a debate delay, Obama also declined to join McCain in suspending campaign activities, and noted both he and his opponent had jets that could get them to Washington very quickly if their presence were needed. He said he had been in daily contact with congressional leaders and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, and didn’t see an immediate need for his presence.
    E
    Good for Obama! I hope he sticks to his decision!
    ~~~
    The University of Mississippi, which was hosting the event, said it too was going ahead with preparations because it had “received no notification of any change in the timing or venue.” The debate commission also said it was moving forward.
    E
    I also hope The Debate Commission stick to their decision
    http://www.cnbc.com/id/22502102/for/cnbc

  • Avatar
    EYES OF TEXAS
    September 25, 2008 at 8:29 am

    John McCain understands whats happening to the economy and has taken the proper action in returning to Washington to do what a Senator is supposed to be doing when America is on the midst of a total economic collapes. Barak Obama is clueless and remains on the campaign trail to get more face time in the media instead of returning to the Senate and participating in the process to save our economy. Not that it really matters because any actions that are presented for a yes or no vote, Obama would give his standard vote of “present”.
    McCain has made his decision based on the well being of America, not out of avoiding a debate. Obama, with his usual arrogance, cares less about being part of the solution and more on staying in the eyes of the public. Too bad for Obamas ignorant decision not to do the job he was elected to do.

  • Avatar
    laura
    September 25, 2008 at 9:03 am

    “Eyes of Texas” – maybe you and McCain can’t – but Obama can walk and chew gum.

  • Avatar
    Irma
    September 25, 2008 at 11:05 am

    Marisa,
    I respectfully disagree with you. Right now I want the ENTIRE US Congress to do their
    job and digest the economic plan that is put before them. I want my Congressmen/women to be there for the entire thing – if they are not there they are not getting my vote.
    This vote is MORE important than Iraq,
    health care, immigration etc. The economic status of the US and indeed the world is at stake. They must get it RIGHT.
    John McCain ‘ decision to suspend his campaign may have been political,
    but it DOES NOT MATTER.
    I expect him to be in Washington and get a first hand understanding of what is going on- not a watered down version provided by advisor. Barak Obama
    should do the same.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    September 25, 2008 at 3:35 pm

    Democratic Congressman Barney Frank, chairman of the House committee shepherding the bailout plan, said all sides were getting close to a deal and accused McCain of “trying to take credit for something that’s already happening without him.”
    Stephen Wayne, professor of government at Georgetown University in Washington, said he understood McCain’s attempt to put off the foreign policy debate because the U.S. economic crisis was likely to “swallow up McCain’s strength on international relations.”
    “I don’t know what would be gained in stopping his campaign,” said Wayne, a presidential historian and student of the 2008 campaign.
    In rejecting a debate delay, Obama also declined to join McCain in suspending campaign activities, and noted both he and his opponent had jets that could get them to Washington very quickly if their presence were needed. He said he had been in daily contact with congressional leaders and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, and didn’t see an immediate need for his presence.
    E
    Good for Obama! I hope he sticks to his decision!

  • Avatar
    laura
    September 25, 2008 at 8:23 pm

    Forgive me, Irma, but do you really think McCain, who a week ago said the fundamentals of our economy are still strong, has anything to contribute to solving this crisis ?
    Not to mention how early this year he said he is always for deregulation …. or that he doesn’t know as much about the economy as he should ….

  • Avatar
    Irma
    September 26, 2008 at 10:09 am

    Todays New York Times illustrates why
    one shouldnt think one candidate is RIGHT all the time and the other is NOT.
    These guys are politicians: here is the NYTIMES reference.
    Dubious Claims in Obama’s Ads Against McCain, Despite Vow of Truth
    By JIM RUTENBERG and JULIE BOSMAN
    Published: September 25, 2008

  • Avatar
    Michaela
    September 26, 2008 at 3:07 pm

    Last I checked, Obama is not president yet. He is still a senator and it was his duty to be back in Washington participating in the effort to fix a national crisis. He just lost a lot of votes because of his arrogant and indifferent attitude toward the crisis now unfolding in our country. He is not a patriotic American at all.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    September 26, 2008 at 5:28 pm

    It’s Official, Palin is a Bimbo!
    I think this was the
    October surprise the Repuks were talking about.
    Or is it the fact the Repuks can’t don’t seem to know what, where or how they stand on the mess this administration has made of our economy.
    Sarah Palin’s Very Bad Interview
    The first half of the Katie Couric interview with Sarah Palin did not start off well. It was a complete disaster in fact.
    It’s like watching a train wreck, she seems to have no idea what she is talking about.
    Watch the videos here
    http://www.alternet.org/election08/100397/sarah_palin%27s_very_bad_interview/
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    September 26, 2008
    Cafferty: Is Palin qualified to be President?
    Posted: 02:25 PM ET
    From CNN’s Jack Cafferty
    There is a reason the McCain campaign keeps Governor Sarah Palin away from the press.
    This is a direct excerpt from Katie Couric’s One-On-One interview with Sarah Palin, which aired Wednesday on CBS.
    COURIC: Why isn’t it better, Governor Palin, to spend $700 billion helping middle-class families struggling with health care, housing, gas and groceries? … Instead of helping these big financial institutions that played a role in creating this mess?
    PALIN: Ultimately, what the bailout does is help those who are concerned about the health care reform that is needed to help shore up the economy– Oh, it’s got to be about job creation too. So health care reform and reducing taxes and reining in spending has got to accompany tax reductions.
    If McCain wins, this woman will be a 72-year- old heartbeat away from being president of the United States.
    http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2008/09/26/cafferty-is-palin-qualified-to-be-president/
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`
    September 26, 2008
    Palin should step down, conservative commentator says
    Posted: 04:27 PM ET
    From CNN
    (CNN) – Prominent conservative columnist Kathleen Parker, an early supporter of Republican VP candidate Sarah Palin, said Friday recent interviews have shown the Alaska governor is “out of her league” and should leave the GOP presidential ticket for the good of the party.
    The criticism in Parker’s Friday column is the latest in a recent string of negative assessments toward the McCain-Palin candidacy from prominent conservatives.
    It was fun while it lasted,” Parker writes. “Palin’s recent interviews with Charles Gibson, Sean Hannity, and now Katie Couric have all revealed an attractive, earnest, confident candidate. Who is clearly out of her league.”
    Palin’s interview with Couric drew criticism when the Alaska governor was unable to provide an example of when John McCain had pushed for more regulation of Wall Street during his Senate career. Palin also took heat for defending her foreign policy credentials by suggesting Russian leaders enter Alaska airspace when they come to America. Palin was also criticized last week for appearing not to know what the Bush Doctrine is during an interview with Charlie Gibson.
    “If BS were currency, Palin could bail out Wall Street herself,” Parker also writes. “If Palin were a man, we’d all be guffawing, just as we do every time Joe Biden tickles the back of his throat with his toes. But because she’s a woman — and the first ever on a Republican presidential ticket — we are reluctant to say what is painfully true.”
    Parker, who praised McCain’s “keen judgment” for picking Palin earlier this month and wrote the Alaska governor is a “perfect storm of God, Mom and apple pie,” now says Palin should step down from the ticket.
    “Only Palin can save McCain, her party, and the country she loves,” Parker writes. She can bow out for personal reasons, perhaps because she wants to spend more time with her newborn. No one would criticize a mother who puts her family first. Do it for your country.”
    Parker’s comments follow those by prominent conservatives David Brooks, George Will, and David Frum who have all publicly questioned Palin’s readiness to be vice president.
    “Sarah Palin has many virtues,” Brooks wrote in a recent column. “If you wanted someone to destroy a corrupt establishment, she’d be your woman. But the constructive act of governance is another matter. She has not been engaged in national issues, does not have a repertoire of historic patterns and, like President Bush, she seems to compensate for her lack of experience with brashness and excessive decisivenes
    http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2008/09/26/palin-should-step-down-conservative-commentator-says/

  • Avatar
    laura
    September 26, 2008 at 5:51 pm

    Michaela, please pay attention: Obama was right there in Washington, with McCain, Bush and congressional leaders, at yesterday’s meeting about the bailout plan. The agreement on the plan subsequently fell apart when congressional Republicans decided they might benefit more if there is no agreement, than if there is one. Obama is reported to have asked many questions, while McCain hardly spoke.
    He has said he is always for deregulation, so he probably didn’t have much that came to mind while the talks were in progress.

  • Avatar
    laura
    September 26, 2008 at 6:00 pm

    Irma, I think you are absolutely right; you say: “These guys are politicians: here is the NYTIMES reference.
    Dubious Claims in Obama’s Ads Against McCain, Despite Vow of Truth.”
    Obama is a politician. That’s why we can’t simply sit back and hope he will take care of our issues. Between the two present presidential candidates, he is by very very far the superior one for the country. But even the best presidents, like FDR, have serious flaws.
    It would have been nice to see Obama say to McCain, “If you don’t stop telling lies about me, I’m going to start telling the truth about you.” Because for sure the truth about McCain is more than scary enough. And for sure McCain has continuously been telling huge lies, both about Obama and about himself and his running mate. So the truth would be enough.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    September 26, 2008 at 6:20 pm

    Dubious Claims in Obama’s Ads Against McCain, Despite Vow of Truth
    New York Times
    Bill Adair, the editor of PolitiFact, the fact-checking Web site of The St. Petersburg Times and Congressional Quarterly, said that until last week, the McCain campaign was more frequently guilty of including the most egregious falsehoods in its advertisements.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/26/us/politics/26ads.html?_r=1&pagewanted=2&ref=politics&oref=slogin

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    September 26, 2008 at 7:13 pm

    Last I checked, Obama is the solution for the 21st century, he’s intelligent, well-educated, he’s a transformational leader and an extraordinary manager.
    He spent 12 years studying, practising and teaching Constitutional law; 8 years as statee Senator of a district of over 750,000 and a US Senator of a state with 13 million and during that time he sponsored 131 bills including energy independence, ethics reform and nuclear proliferation.
    In the U.S. Senate, he has focused on tackling the challenges of a globalized, 21st century world with fresh thinking and a politics that no longer settles for the lowest common denominator.
    His first law was passed with Republican Tom Coburn, a measure to rebuild trust in government by allowing every American to go online and see how and where every dime of their tax dollars is spent.
    He has also been the lead voice in championing ethics reform that would root out Jack Abramoff-style corruption in Congress.
    As a member of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee, Senator Obama has fought to help Illinois veterans get the disability pay they were promised, while working to prepare the VA for the return of the thousands of veterans who will need care after Iraq and Afghanistan.
    Recognizing the terrorist threat posed by weapons of mass destruction, he traveled to Russia with Republican Dick Lugar to begin a new generation of non-proliferation efforts designed to find and secure deadly weapons around the world.
    And knowing the threat we face to our economy and our security from America’s addiction to oil, he’s working to bring auto companies, unions, farmers, businesses and politicians of both parties together to promote the greater use of alternative fuels and higher fuel standards in our cars.
    Obama has shown us he will be a president with vision, integrity, wisdom, courage and a track record for good judgment and grace under pressure.
    Aside from his political, cultural, and social views, first I look for a president who speaks and talks in complete paragraphs showing he is educated. Talking and speaking well not only shows that the person is a first rate thinker it is one of the essential requirements of a leader.
    I also look for a well-educated president, one who not only understands issues of policy but who understands the world at large. That is, a president who knows how science works, how society works, and how government works.
    An educated president is not necessarily one who finished college and got a high grade point average, but a person who went to college and absorbed how to learn, how to read, how to understand subjects, and how to continue to educate oneself.
    Such a president will know what kinds of questions to ask, and even at times read beyond the executive summary. Such a president can command respect as a leader.
    A president also should have a certain level of culture, one who can not only appreciate the plebian aspects, such as the endemic sports world and Hollywood celebrity world, but also have some understanding of what has been done in the finer arts, in literature, music, and art.
    I’m not asking for a Renaissance man, but someone who has shown some interest beyond mere government. Someone who has an interest and curiosity about the world. This is all a part of an ideal leader.
    A president must also be secure enough in his or her own abilities and knowledge to be able to and want to listen to and understand the arguments of his or her opponents.
    A president who is afraid of criticism and cannot handle hearing opposing views is not a good leader. A true leader is open to the idea that he might be wrong, and most good Presidents were open to hearing conflicting viewpoints on an issue.
    These are attributes on which the public can build respect on, and such a person would bring respect of the Office of the Presidency.
    I feel he is qualified to be president, because he exhibits the qualities I’ve outlined above.

  • Avatar
    Irma
    September 27, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    Barak Obama spent 12 years teaching a CLASS in constitutional for pay (per lecture). In those 12 years, he never ONCE published his views on ANY aspect of constitutional law. This is not what SCHOLARS do.
    BaraK Obama has never MANAGED anything except a political campaign.
    This he does well – but the USA is not a political campaign. I would be confident in his abilites if he had managed an excecutive position (MANAGEMENT) in government.
    Barak Obama has NOT shown us he will be a president that will manage with integrity and wisdom. The Rev Jeremiah Wright association for 20 years, not the recent dumping of him , illustratesa complete lack of BAD Judgment (no wisdom). Integrity?
    Lets see, it is not good enough to say
    until last week he ran a campaign that was not in the gutter. This makes
    him the better of the two? By, I disagree with that assesmment. Barak Obama has run down and dirty politics his ENTIRE career. This kind stuff didnt begin last week.
    Look, when you vote for him, be honest with yourself at least. You have two very bad choices for different reasons.
    Dont idolize the man. Save that admiration for someone who is the real thing. Maybe that person doesnt exist – but being an optimist, I am still
    waiting. You know modern day Jews are still waiting for the Messiah. By this they dont mean God. They wait for a human being who will solve the worlds problems and end human suffering. Dont make Barak Obama your political messiah.

  • Avatar
    laura
    September 27, 2008 at 10:54 pm

    Dear Irma, you say, “They wait for a human being who will solve the worlds problems and end human suffering.” I think we truly better not wait for such a person. We better get busy on our problems and work to lighten our suffering and that of our sisters and brothers.
    For sure Barack Obama will not solve the world’s – or my – problems. The best I hope is that he will control a fraction of the damage done in the past decade(s) of Republican rule. The worst perpetrators in that time were George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, and let’s not forget Michael Chertoff. Voting with Bush 90% of the time?
    Even more certainly, McCain/Palin in the White house would make the world’s – and my – problems dramatically worse than they already are.
    That is why I donated to, and will campaign for Barack Obama – no messiah for sure, but an analytical and intelligent person with the ability to listen and to correct mistakes.
    And Irma, what’s with your obsession with publishing? What do you care what Obama published or did not publish? Do you want to contribute to a McCain/Palin presidency because Obama didn’t publish constitutional law articles?
    I really think we have some bigger problems to worry about – like McCain attacking Iran or Russia, running the economy definitively into the ground with his big-money (Freddie Mac lobbyist campaign-manager) friends, and writing into law the ICE raids and “detention-center” chain of concentration camps for my undocumented friends, that so far have been Bush-Chertoff freelancing. Do you want Blackwater mercenaries patrolling the streets of Houston after the next hurricane? Then help elect McCain/Palin.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    September 28, 2008 at 3:42 am

    Believe me when I say that my assessment of Obama was not made on a whim. It was made because of 4 years of watching this extraordinary man and collecting every article , every book, and following every step he has taken in the last four years. He inspired me with his famous speech given at the DNC in 2004.
    Every time people come into the community center where I volunteer looking for referrals for food, clothing, or shelter I have thought how different things would be for them if we had a president like Obama.
    Every time I hear of the raids and the atrocities ICE is allowed to commit against children, women, and families by this administration I have often thought that if Obama had the audacity to run for president these people would have a chance to hope.
    Bush and his cronies should be in jail, and so should anyone else stupid enough to vote for more of the same. The following is part of what I base my assessment of Obama on. I didnt give him credit for anything he hasent earned. I was honest not only to myself but to others who read this and especially those wanting to strip him of what he deserves and smear him instead.
    Barack put law school on hold after college and moved to Chicago, where he became a community organizer with a church-based group that was dedicated to improving living conditions in poor neighborhoods. For example, helping poor people work with service agencies to get their plumbing and heating fixed and to find jobs for unemployed. It was here that he realized it would take changes in our laws and politics to truly improve the lives of the people in these impoverished neighborhoods.
    The resume detail that initially caught wide attention was his election in 1990 as the first African-American president (that is, editor in chief) of the Harvard Law Review, the premier legal academic publication in the United States. Banish any lurking thought of an affirmative-action wind at his back. Exams at Harvard Law School are graded blind. Barack earned his law degree from Harvard in 1991, graduating Magna Cum Laude from Harvard Law.
    He turned down a prestigious judicial clerkship, choosing instead to practice civil-rights law back in Chicago, representing victims of housing and employment discrimination and working on voting-rights legislation.
    While in Chicago as a community organizer once again, Obama organized an aggressive voter registration effort that aided in the election of President Bill Clinton and Senator Carol Moseley Braun. The campaign registered over 100,000 voters. Soon after, his talents earned him a position at a local civil rights law firm, and he became a lecturer of constitutional law at the University of Chicago, where he served as a professor until his election to the U.S. Senate.
    Barack is also an accomplished author. His 1995 book, Dreams from My Father, is a memoir of his youth and early career. The book was reprinted in 2004 with a new preface and an annex containing the text of his 2004 Democratic Convention keynote speech. The audio book edition earned Barack the 2006 Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album.
    In December 2004, Barack signed a contract to write three more books. Named one of Time magazine’s “100 most influential people in the world” list in 2005. Also chosen as one of “10 people would change the world” by New Statesman magazine (2005).
    The first book, The Audacity of Hope, was published in October 2006. The book has remained at or near the top of the New York Times Best Seller list since its publication. It was also the theme of his 2004 keynote address. The second book will be a children’s book to be co-written with his wife Michelle and their two daughters, with profits going to charity.
    Four months into his senate career, In 2007 Time magazine again named him “one of the world’s most influential people,” calling him “one of the most admired politicians in America.” Barack formally announced his candidacy for the 2008 presidential election in Springfield, Illinois on February 10, 2007
    Won his second Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for “The Audacity of Hope” (2008).
    ~~~~~~
    “When you come in, especially as a freshman, and work on something like ethics reform, it’s not necessarily a way to endear yourself to some of the veteran members of the Illinois General Assembly,” said state Sen. Kirk W. Dillard, a Republican who became a friend. “And working on issues like racial profiling was contentious, but Barack had a way both intellectually and in demeanor that defused skeptics.” Washington Post
    Illinois State Senate
    “In the Illinois State Senate, this meant working with both Democrats and Republicans to help working families get ahead by creating programs like the state Earned Income Tax Credit, which in three years provided over $100 million in tax cuts to families across the state. He also pushed through an expansion of early childhood education, and after a number of inmates on death row were found innocent, Senator Obama worked with law enforcement officials to require the videotaping of interrogations and confessions in all capital cases.
    United States Senate
    He has continued this inclusive and productive style of work in the U.S. Senate: “In the U.S. Senate, he has focused on tackling the challenges of a globalized, 21st century world with fresh thinking and a politics that no longer settles for the lowest common denominator. His first law was passed with Republican Tom Coburn, a measure to rebuild trust in government by allowing every American to go online and see how and where every dime of their tax dollars are spent. He has also been the lead voice in championing ethics reform that would root out Jack Abramoff-style corruption in Congress.
    Foreign Policy
    Obama’s foreign policy experience includes graduating from Columbia University with a degree in political science with an emphasis on international relations. In the U.S. Senate Obama is unique among Senators in that he serves on three of the four Senate Committees dealing with foreign policy issues including the Foreign Relations; Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs; and Veterans’ Affairs committees and is the Chair of the Foreign Relations Subcommittee on European Relations which is responsible fore U.S. relations with European countries, the European Union, and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (i.e., NATO). When comparing Obama’s foreign policy experience with other candidates for President you have Democrat Joseph Biden who is Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, Democrat Hillary Clinton who is a member of the Armed Services Committee and John McCain who is the Ranking Member of the Armed Services Committee yet there is no Senator except for Barack Obama who serves on three of the four committees that deal with foreign policy.
    Foreign Relations Committee
    Obama service on the Foreign Relations committee has placed him in an unique position in that he is the Chair of the Subcommittee on European Relations and serves on the Subcommittees on African Affairs; East Asia and Pacific Affairs; and International Development and Foreign Assistance, Economic Affairs, and International Environmental Protection. This cross-section of subcommittees places Obama in a unique position of having knowledge about Asian, African and European issues
    Obama has also traveled extensively in his capacity as a member of the Foreign Relations Committee and has visited Russia, Ukraine, and Azerbaijan in Asia; Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, and the Palestinian Territories in the Middle East; and Chad, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, and South Africa in Africa. Obama has also co-sponsored the “Lugar-Obama Act” with Republican Senator Richard Lugar who was Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations at the time. This act was a bi-partisan effort to increase U.S. security in terms of the elimination of conventional weapons and weapons of mass destruction. This legislation came out of Obama’s trip with Senator Richard Lugar to Russia, the Ukraine and Azerbaijan.
    Obama has also sponsored legislation such as the “Democratic Republic of Congo Relief, Security, and Democracy Promotion Act” which was signed into law by President Bush on December 22, 2006. Obama has co-sponsored immigration related bills related to his service on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee including the Secure America and Orderly Immigration Act. His extensive foreign policy experience exceeds that of every other Presidential candidate including his trips abroad in the performance of his official duties as a member of committees dealing with foreign relation issues.
    While some have criticized Obama’s foreign travel claiming that he is the most traveled freshman Senator in doing so they often fail to mention that as a result of his extensive trips abroad is legislation such as the Lugar-Obama Act instead preferring to make the political connection between his travels abroad to his run for President yet others will recognize the experience he has gained as a result of his foreign trips and recognize that as a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that he is expected to travel extensively and that his travels often were with the Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee.
    Among the three top freshman who have received attention along with Obama in terms of foreign travel you have Barack Obama who serves on three committees dealing with foreign policy, Republican Richard Burr who serves on the Select Committee on Intelligence and Republican Tom Coburn who serves on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and it must be noted that such travel was part of an official delegation and was approved and paid for by the Senate.
    Veterans’ Affairs Committee
    As a member of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee, Senator Obama has fought to help Illinois veterans get the disability pay they were promised, while working to prepare the VA for the return of the thousands of veterans who will need care after Iraq and Afghanistan. Recognizing the terrorist threat posed by weapons of mass destruction, he traveled to Russia with Republican Dick Lugar to begin a new generation of non-proliferation efforts designed to find and secure deadly weapons around the world. And knowing the threat we face to our economy and our security from America’s addiction to oil, he’s working to bring auto companies, unions, farmers, businesses and politicians of both parties together to promote the greater use of alternative fuels and higher fuel standards in our cars.
    Ethics
    “Obama has made ethics reform a central part of his political career. Two years into his first term in the U.S. Senate, he has had limited opportunities to leave a mark at the federal level, especially as a member of the minority party. But he has worked with Republicans on new good-government laws. He co-sponsored one, signed in September, that will create a federal spending database so Web users can track all grants, loans and awards greater than $25,000. He also pushed to limit the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s authority to award open-ended, no-bid contracts in the wake of major disasters — a reaction to post-Katrina abuses. More to the point, last year Senate Democrats tapped Obama as the chief negotiator for their caucus in talks over post-Abramoff ethics reforms, though those negotiations faltered. Ethics reform was one of Obama’s signature issues in Springfield, as well. Beyond the Gift Ban Act, he helped push Democratic Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s 2003 ethics reforms. The gift ban law, the first broad ethics reform in Illinois since the Watergate era, prohibited politicians from using campaign funds for personal use, barred fundraising on state property, established ethics commissions, curtailed fundraisers in Springfield during legislative sessions and mandated online reporting of campaign finances. The 2003 ethics package created independent inspectors general with subpoena powers to look into abuses by legislators, statewide officeholders and their employees. It further clamped down on the types of gifts lawmakers can receive and prohibited lobbyists and their spouses from sitting on state boards and commissions. Obama also touted publicly financed judicial campaigns, an idea that was approved by the Illinois Senate but languished in the House.
    Read more about Obama’s work in the U.S. Senate on Obsidian Wings
    Before the war in Iraq in 2002, he exclaimed: “Now let me be clear: I suffer no illusions about Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal man. A ruthless man. A man who butchers his own people to secure his own power…. The world, and the Iraqi people, would be better off without him. But I also know that Saddam poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States, or to his neighbors…and that in concert with the international community he can be contained until, in the way of all petty dictators, he falls away into the dustbin of history. I know that even a successful war against Iraq will require a U.S. occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences. I know that an invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East, and encourage the worst, rather than best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of al-Qaeda. I am not opposed to all wars. I’m opposed to dumb wars. So for those of us who seek a more just and secure world for our children, let us send a clear message to the president.”
    Senator Obama clearly showed good judgment in assessing the Iraq situation in the fall of 2002.
    While his opponents were voting us into Iraq, Barack made quite an inexperienced statement.

  • Avatar
    laura
    September 28, 2008 at 9:46 am

    Dear Irma, I have been thinking some more about your post. Of course I’ve also been thinking about the stance that John McCain and Barack Obama take on the bankruptcies that Wall Street bankers have brought upon themselves, while devastating economic conditions for the rest of us.
    McCain’s basic position is: take care of the richest, and everybody else fend for themselves. That is why he wants to prolong the tax giveaways for the richest 5% of Americans – and most especially for the richest 0.5% – that Bush and the Republican congress passed in 2002, and that are one of the two main causes for our mind-boggling deficit. (The other main cause is the Iraq war – $10 billion per month for 5 and 1/2 years.)
    If McCain becomes president, the United States will become another Russia (without the oil): a corrupt, dog-eat-dog, militaristic society where the rich can’t find enough caviar to spend their money on, and the poor drink themselves to death in the streets. Except here, there will be more crystal meth than vodka involved.
    But Obama sure is no messiah. I was very disappointed in his debate performance, which to me reflects that he has no fundamental problem with many of McCain’s – i.e. Bush’s – views. Why didn’t he say, if there is a bailout, the homeowners who were cheated by predatory lenders will be bailed out first?
    If Obama can agree to borrowing $700 billion from Kuwait, China, and our grandchildren, why is he not insisting that all foreclosures of homes in which the owner lives, are stopped immediately?
    The reason is that Obama’s economic advisers are the Clinton and Bush administration characters who caused this disaster in the first place, by repealing the laws that regulated Wall Street. David Sirota has a list of who these people are, and an incisive analysis:
    “Robert Rubin-Former Treasury Secretary (1995-1999)
    Gene Sperling-Former National Economic Adviser for President Bill Clinton (1997-2001)
    Lawrence Summers-Former Treasury Secretary (1999-2001)
    Laura Tyson-Former Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers (1993-1995), Former National Economic Adviser for President Bill Clinton (1995-1997)
    Paul Volcker-Former Chairman, U.S. Federal Reserve (1979-1987)
    The following advisers will participate by phone
    Warren Buffett-Chairman and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway
    William Daley-Former Commerce Secretary (1997-2000)
    Paul O’Neill- Former Treasury Secretary (2001-2002)
    Joseph Stiglitz- Former Chairman, CEA (1995-1997)
    Let’s just review – we have Rubin, the architect of NAFTA, the guy who championed Wall Street deregulation as Clinton Treasury secretary, and an executive at a bank at the center of the current crisis; Sperling, Summers and Tyson who also championed Wall Street deregulation under Clinton; Daley, who was the chief Wall Street favor-granter as Commerce Secretary and NAFTA advocate; Volcker, a right-leaning former Fed chairman; Buffet, perhaps progressive on taxation, but nonetheless the world’s richest man and not a progressive; and Paul O’Neill who, despite his criticism of Bush on non-economic issues, is a conservative economic ideologue.
    The only progressive person you have in this bunch is Stiglitz. You can disagree around the edges (for instance, you can claim that Buffett is more progressive than I believe he is). But it is absoutely undebatable that there’s not a single representative from the progressive/labor/New Deal wing of the Democratic Party.”
    This is at http://www.openleft.com/showDiary.do;jsessionid=3257B5CBC856A1893797BBA26848B748?diaryId=8365
    That is why I think we need to keep our eyes wide open. Letting McCain win will lead to absolute disaster. Whoever says, it won’t be so bad, said the same thing when Bush won. But if Obama wins – which I am investing time and money for – we are not saved. Our struggle to turn this country back on a road to decency will have just begun.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    September 28, 2008 at 7:16 pm

    If more people took Wrights position and placed blame where blame is due, maybe this Nation wouldent be the BIG MESS it is now. Wright was Right in my opinion.
    Obama’s Minister Committed “Treason” But When My Father Said the Same Thing He Was a Republican Hero
    Posted March 16, 2008 | 04:23 PM (EST)
    When Senator Obama’s preacher thundered about racism and injustice Obama suffered smear-by-association. But when my late father — Religious Right leader Francis Schaeffer — denounced America and even called for the violent overthrow of the US government, he was invited to lunch with presidents Ford, Reagan and Bush, Sr.
    Every Sunday thousands of right wing white preachers (following in my father’s footsteps) rail against America’s sins from tens of thousands of pulpits.
    They tell us that America is complicit in the “murder of the unborn,” has become “Sodom” by coddling gays, and that our public schools are sinful places full of evolutionists and sex educators hell-bent on corrupting children. They say, as my dad often did, that we are, “under the judgment of God.” They call America evil and warn of immanent destruction. By comparison Obama’s minister’s shouted “controversial” comments were mild. All he said was that God should damn America for our racism and violence and that no one had ever used the N-word about Hillary Clinton.
    Dad and I were amongst the founders of the Religious right. In the 1970s and 1980s, while Dad and I crisscrossed America denouncing our nation’s sins instead of getting in trouble we became darlings of the Republican Party. (This was while I was my father’s sidekick before I dropped out of the evangelical movement altogether.) We were rewarded for our “stand” by people such as Congressman Jack Kemp, the Fords, Reagan and the Bush family. The top Republican leadership depended on preachers and agitators like us to energize their rank and file. No one called us un-American.
    Consider a few passages from my father’s immensely influential America-bashing book A Christian Manifesto. It sailed under the radar of the major media who, back when it was published in 1980, were not paying particular attention to best-selling religious books. Nevertheless it sold more than a million copies.
    Here’s Dad writing in his chapter on civil disobedience:
    If there is a legitimate reason for the use of force [against the US government]… then at a certain point force is justifiable.
    And this:
    In the United States the materialistic, humanistic world view is being taught exclusively in most state schools… There is an obvious parallel between this and the situation in Russia [the USSR]. And we really must not be blind to the fact that indeed in the public schools in the United States all religious influence is as forcibly forbidden as in the Soviet Union….
    Then this:
    There does come a time when force, even physical force, is appropriate… A true Christian in Hitler’s Germany and in the occupied countries should have defied the false and counterfeit state.
    This brings us to a current issue that is crucial for the future of the church in the United States, the issue of abortion… It is time we consciously realize that when any office commands what is contrary to God’s law it abrogates it’s authority. And our loyalty to the God who gave this law then requires that we make the appropriate response in that situation…
    Was any conservative political leader associated with Dad running for cover? Far from it. Dad was a frequent guest of the Kemps, had lunch with the Fords, stayed in the White House as their guest, he met with Reagan, helped Dr. C. Everett Koop become Surgeon General. (I went on the 700 Club several times to generate support for Koop).
    Dad became a hero to the evangelical community and a leading political instigator. When Dad died in 1984 everyone from Reagan to Kemp to Billy Graham lamented his passing publicly as the loss of a great American. Not one Republican leader was ever asked to denounce my dad or distanced himself from Dad’s statements.
    Take Dad’s words and put them in the mouth of Obama’s preacher (or in the mouth of any black American preacher) and people would be accusing that preacher of treason.
    Yet when we of the white Religious Right denounced America white conservative Americans and top political leaders, called our words “godly” and “prophetic” and a “call to repentance.”
    We Republican agitators of the mid 1970s to the late 1980s were genuinely anti-American in the same spirit that later Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson (both followers of my father) were anti-American when they said God had removed his blessing from America on 9/11, because America accepted gays. Falwell and Robertson recanted but we never did.
    My dad’s books denouncing America and comparing the USA to Hitler are still best sellers in the “respectable” evangelical community and he’s still hailed as a prophet by many Republican leaders. When Mike Huckabee was recently asked by Katie Couric to name one book he’d take with him to a desert island, besides the Bible, he named Dad’s Whatever Happened to the Human Race? a book where Dad also compared America to Hitler’s Germany.
    The hypocrisy of the right denouncing Obama, because of his minister’s words, is staggering. They are the same people who argue for the right to “bear arms” as “insurance” to limit government power. They are the same people that (in the early 1980s roared and cheered when I called down damnation on America as “fallen away from God” at their national meetings where I was keynote speaker, including the annual meeting of the ultraconservative Southern Baptist convention, and the religious broadcasters that I addressed.
    Today we have a marriage of convenience between the right wing fundamentalists who hate Obama, and the “progressive” Clintons who are playing the race card through their own smear machine.
    Both the far right Republicans and the stop-at-nothing Clintons are using the “scandal” of Obama’s preacher to undermine the first black American candidate with a serious shot at the presidency. Funny thing is, the racist Clinton/Far Right smear machine proves that Obama’s minister had a valid point. There is plenty to yell about these days.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/frank-schaeffer/obamas-minister-committe_b_91774.html

  • Avatar
    EYES OF TEXAS
    September 29, 2008 at 10:42 am

    If Obama were white with the same past associates and questionable past dealings, he would have been out of this campaign long ago. But, since he is black, he is given a free pass and not to be scrutinized as a white man would be.
    Because of white guilt and political correctness Obama is allowed to continue his campaign as a media created fraud with nothing to offer except hallow promises and his socialist leaning changes he will implement if elected. He must be stopped for the sake of America.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    September 29, 2008 at 9:36 pm

    Eyes
    When you can give me an answer to the last batch of BS you conjured up. Then we can address this one.
    You must be stopped for the sake of America!

  • Avatar
    Irma
    September 30, 2008 at 3:20 pm

    This is for Laura:
    I only mention Obama’s lack of publishing because Obama has never corrected the misperception propogated on line and in the press that he is a PROFESSOR and LAW SCHOLAR. It is strange that Barak Obama
    wouldnt set the record straight. It is a fact that he is a US Senator, a graduate of Columbia University and of Harvard Law
    School. Most people would be proud to have this on their CV. So it is baffling that
    he doesnt CORRECT the public and say that he respects his professors from college and law school too much to let anyone claim that HE (Barak Obama) is a professor and scholar. If he said something like, “gee I have taught classes in consitutional law but by no means am I a PROFESSOR or scholar.
    I chose public service instead. ”
    But he has never discouraged these misperceptions? My question is why?

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    September 30, 2008 at 10:35 pm

    March 28, 2008
    Q:
    Was Barack Obama really a constitutional law professor?
    When I was in law school, I addressed all of my course instructors as “professors,” regardless of their rank or formal position in the school academic hierarchy (tenured professor, assistant professor, adjunct professor, lecturer, etc.). Was Obama exaggerating or factually wrong in referring to himself as a “constitutional law professor” at the University of Chicago Law School even though his official title was lecturer?
    A:
    His formal title was “senior lecturer,” but the University of Chicago Law School says he “served as a professor” and was “regarded as” a professor.
    Sen. Obama, who has taught courses in constitutional law at the University of Chicago, has regularly referred to himself as “a constitutional law professor,” most famously at a March 30, 2007, fundraiser when he said, “I was a constitutional law professor, which means unlike the current president I actually respect the Constitution.” A spokesman for the Republican National Committee immediately took exception to Obama’s remarks, pointing out that Obama’s title at the University of Chicago was “senior lecturer” and not “professor.”
    Recently, Hillary Clinton’s campaign has picked up on this charge. In a March 27 conference call with reporters, Clinton spokesman Phil Singer claimed:
    Singer (March 27): Sen. Obama has often referred to himself as “a constitutional law professor” out on the campaign trail. He never held any such title. And I think anyone, if you ask anyone in academia the distinction between a professor who has tenure and an instructor that does not, you’ll find that there is … you’ll get quite an emotional response.
    The campaign also sent out an e-mail quoting an Aug. 8, 2004, column in the Chicago Sun-Times that criticized Obama for calling himself a professor when, in fact, the University of Chicago faculty page listed him as “a senior lecturer (now on leave).” The Sun-Times said, “In academia, there is a vast difference between the two titles. Details matter.” The Clinton campaign added that the difference between senior lecturers and professors is that “professors have tenure while lecturers do not.”
    We agree that details matter, and also that the formal title of “professor” is not lightly given by academic institutions. However, on this matter the University of Chicago Law School itself is not standing on formality, and is siding with Obama.
    Due to numerous press inquiries on the matter, the school released a carefully worded statement saying that for his 12 years there he was considered to be “a professor.”
    UC Law School statement: The Law School has received many media requests about Barack Obama, especially about his status as “Senior Lecturer.” From 1992 until his election to the U.S. Senate in 2004, Barack Obama served as a professor in the Law School. He was a Lecturer from 1992 to 1996. He was a Senior Lecturer from 1996 to 2004, during which time he taught three courses per year. Senior Lecturers are considered to be members of the Law School faculty and are regarded as professors, although not full-time or tenure-track. The title of Senior Lecturer is distinct from the title of Lecturer, which signifies adjunct status. Like Obama, each of the Law School’s Senior Lecturers have high-demand careers in politics or public service, which prevent full-time teaching. Several times during his 12 years as a professor in the Law School, Obama was invited to join the faculty in a full-time tenure-track position, but he declined.
    Contrary to what the Clinton campaign claimed, not all professors have tenure. For instance, academics with the title of “assistant professor” typically work for between five and seven years before being reviewed for tenure.
    Furthermore, Obama was not merely an “instructor” as Phil Singer stated. As a “senior lecturer,” Obama was in good company: The six other faculty members with the title include the associate dean of the law school and Judge Richard Posner, who is widely considered to be one of the nation’s top legal theorists.
    -Joe Miller
    Update March 28: As originally written this item stated flatly that the law school “confirms that Obama was a professor.” We have rewritten the item in parts to more accurately reflect the nuance in the law school’s news release.
    Sources
    Farrington, Brendan. “Obama: Bush Not Respecting Constitution.” The San Francisco Chronicle, 30 March 2007. 27 March 2008.
    Sweet, Lynn. “Sweet Column Reprise. Obama’s Book: What’s Real, What’s Not.” Chicago Sun Times, 8 August 2004. 27 March 2008.
    University of Chicago Law School. “Law School Faculty.” The University of Chicago Law School Online Catalog, 14 May 2007. 27 March 2008.
    http://www.factcheck.org/askfactcheck/was_barack_
    obama_really_a_constitutional_law.html

  • Avatar
    Irma Sanchez
    October 1, 2008 at 11:56 am

    Ask the faculty at the University of Chicago
    law school if Barak Obama is a law professor. They know. They have expressed surprise the the University of Chicago says otherwise!
    By the way, just because one senior lecturer is a renown expert on a subject-
    doesnt make all senior lecturers experts!
    Senior simply means that one has been doing their job for a more than 5 years.
    Also, some of what you quoted makes no sense. If you are Professor at the Law school , you would not be a Lecturer/Instructor (same thing) at the the same school.
    Indeed, it ODD that the University of
    Chicago posted a “carefully worded statement on the matter.” Barak Obama
    was either a Professor or not.
    From what the statement they gave, it was clear that he was NOT.
    Why cant Barak Obama just say it ?
    Its no crime, Failing to set the record straight is indicative of a character flaw.
    He is willing to taking credit for something that doesnt really belong to him. This to me is disturbing. Hilary was wrong to claim having dodged sniper fire, Sarah Palin to claim the rejection of the bridge to nowhere, and
    Barak Obama is WRONG to let others
    give him titles that dont belong to him.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    October 1, 2008 at 11:56 pm

    This from The University of Chicago Law School who is the intended authority to make the determination if Obama is a professor or not in accordance with their rules.
    Faculty members dont have the authority to make that determination anyway. They are only allowed to give their openion which could be biased based on jealousy or party affiliation .
    The University of Chicago Law School handles media requests through the University of Chicago News Office.
    The Law School is happy to work with the media to provide access to our faculty members, who are experts on myriad subjects, or to provide comment on news stories where appropriate.
    For all media inquiries, please contact Sarah Galer at sgaler@uchicago.edu or 773 702 8365.
    Statement Regarding Barack Obama
    The Law School has received many media requests about Barack Obama, especially about his status as “Senior Lecturer.”
    From 1992 until his election to the U.S. Senate in 2004, Barack Obama served as a professor in the Law School.
    He was a Lecturer from 1992 to 1996. He was a Senior Lecturer from 1996 to 2004, during which time he taught three courses per year. Senior Lecturers are considered to be members of the Law School faculty and are regarded as professors, although not full-time or tenure-track.
    The title of Senior Lecturer is distinct from the title of Lecturer, which signifies adjunct status. Like Obama, each of the Law School’s Senior Lecturers has high-demand careers in politics or public service, which prevent full-time teaching.
    Several times during his 12 years as a professor in the Law School, Obama was invited to join the faculty in a full-time tenure-track position, but he declined.
    http://www.law.uchicago.edu/media/index.html
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    This from the Faculty Blog at U C. The majority posters offered only accolades for Obama. There were maybe 4 who seem to be Republicans. There remarks were made along party lines and a disagreement for progressives politics. This is from 2006.
    Barack Obama
    Now that the school year is well underway, it might be worth noting that a new book is about to appear from a member of the faculty.
    But against all odds, his last name isn’t Posner (though the Judge and the Professor do have recent books out). It’s Obama.
    There is a lot to say about Senator Obama and his time at the University of Chicago Law School. (He remains affiliated with the law school, and he has an office on the fifth floor — though the list of faculty members notes, in a way that seems at once proud and forlorn, that he is now “out of residence.”) He was, and is, widely admired by students and faculty alike — and entirely across political divisions.
    How well I remember past elections in which faculty members, who disagreed on a great deal, agreed that Obama would be a magnificent addition to the United States Congress.
    I think their agreement resulted from Obama’s character (he’s a genuinely wonderful guy), his evident ability and sheer excellence (for example, he’s a terrific teacher, and we tried to convince him to join the faculty full-time on several occasions), and his independence and unpredictability (he toes no party line; he knows how markets work, and how government can make things worse).
    http://uchicagolaw.typepad.com/faculty/2006/10/barack
    _obama.html

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