Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Obama Appears Shocked When Hit With Tough Questions

This isn't coming from a neo-con publication, it is the Washington Post reporting this story.

It took many months and the mockery of "Saturday Night Live" to make it happen, but the lumbering beast that is the press corps finally roused itself from its slumber Monday and greeted Barack Obama with a menacing growl.

The day before primaries in Ohio and Texas that could effectively seal the Democratic presidential nomination for him, a smiling Obama strode out to a news conference at a veterans facility here. But the grin was quickly replaced by the surprised look of a man bitten by his own dog.

Reporters from the Associated Press and Reuters went after him for his false denial that a campaign aide had held a secret meeting with Canadian officials over Obama's trade policy. A trio of Chicago reporters pummeled him with questions about the corruption trial this week of a friend and supporter. The New York Post piled on with a question about him losing the Jewish vote.

Obama responded with the classic phrases of a politician in trouble. "That was the information that I had at the time. . . . Those charges are completely unrelated to me. . . . I have said that that was a mistake. . . . The fact pattern remains unchanged."

When those failed, Obama tried another approach. "We're running late," the candidate said, and then he disappeared behind a curtain.


As I have said before, his obvious lack of experience is a problem.

Just as his supporters cannot articulate an intelligent reason to support Sen. Obama, it is becoming apparent that Obama cannot even articulate why he should be the President. Until now, it hasn't happened. And now that the questions are as tough as Hillary and McCain have been given, Mr. Obama is showing that he is not ready for consideration in the big leagues.

Before he beat his hasty retreat, however, Obama found time to assign blame for the tough questions suddenly coming his way. "The Clinton campaign has been true to its word in employing a 'kitchen sink' strategy," he protested. "There are, what, three or four things a day?"


So much for being a different kind of politician. Assigning blame is not the mark of an effective leader. Whining about being blindsided by the "Clinton campaign" or the "right-wing" conspiracy" will not persuade intelligent people to make a risky bet and cast their lots with him.

This is precisely what ineffectiveness looks like before it is entrusted to perform miracles and lead a nation that is so bitterly divided. This can only be cured by time and seasoning. And there isn't enough of either to get him where he needs to be, before he will take the helm of a such a large and powerful ship.


I cannot trust someone that will assign blame for their own lack of preparation. If he wants to blame anyone, he can look no further than the press corps that have been assigned to cover him. They have soft-balled him the entire time he has been in this race and now he is lost in the fog of battle.

How can we as a nation truly evaluate a candidate without him answering tough questions?

Answer: It can't.

If a candidate cannot stand in front of a camera without prepared texts to mesmerize a crowd of uninformed supporters, he cannot take the pressure that will certainly be exerted on him during the course of the next four years. If he cannot answer a question about his associations with people like Tony Rezko and Louis Farrakhan, without looking down (while trying to come up with a good answer in lawyerese), he cannot be knighted as Sir Obama, miracle worker.


7 comments:

Greg said...

As I've said before, I don't like Hillary or her likely policies, but she's one tough bitch. She's not afraid of a fight.

I watch Obama at the debates and can't believe what a wimp he is. He almost never disagrees with Hillary. His favorite answer is, "I agree with Hillary on this one." When she challenged him on support from bigots like Farrakhan, he didn't want to renounce and reject the support. She pushed him, and finally he said something like, "Okay, I renounce it and reject it. Whatever makes you comfortable."

In case Obama supporters haven't noticed, POTUS is the most trying, most difficult, most important job on earth. The person who gets the job, especially in time of war, needs to be battle-hardened and tough. They have to be able to stand their ground, and not always find the position that brings them the least criticism.

I can't believe the Democrats are probably going to nominate this guy!

Mustang said...

Unlike many of my countrymen, I am not looking for a messiah to become president. There are no “perfect persons”; even the most intelligent, seasoned politicians will make mistakes — but we must choose our national leader wisely, not emotionally. My post “Casting the Net” addresses areas in which I have fundamental differences with the programs offered on Obama’s socialist menu. They are anathema to our core American values, dangerous to the future of our culture and society.

John Kennedy admonished us, “As not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” Such a sentiment is no longer part of the democratic repertoire; we have progressed to the point that successful candidates “buy the votes” of citizens based on promises of something for nothing. By pandering to one group, at the expense of another, it is a divide and conquer strategy that seeks to take advantage of people who are not known for deep thinking. We must ask ourselves, given the proposition that our economy is in trouble (and I don’t believe this is entirely true), how will more costly government programs help improve our economy? If we want to reduce national debt, how will additional spending achieve that?

The press has given Mr. Obama a “pass” on a number of issues. This has begun to change over the past couple of days, but we need more of the vetting process, not less. No one should attack him for the color of his skin, but I for one am very interested in what he thinks, what he believes, and why. I do not expect the American people to elect someone who lack maturity, or does not understand the painful reality that we are living in a dangerous world. We do not need another Jimmy Carter, but I would be happy to settle for another John Kennedy.

A.C. McCloud said...

The press has given Mr. Obama a “pass” on a number of issues. This has begun to change over the past couple of days, but we need more of the vetting process, not less. No one should attack him for the color of his skin, but I for one am very interested in what he thinks, what he believes, and why. I do not expect the American people to elect someone who lack maturity, or does not understand the painful reality that we are living in a dangerous world. We do not need another Jimmy Carter, but I would be happy to settle for another John Kennedy.

I wonder if the skin color issue isn't favoring Barack rather than hurting him. That is to say, the press has held back on digging too deep into his past for fear of being called cruel or racist. Oddly Barack, whether by design or not, has made that more pronounced by taking the high road and not playing the race card.

Either that or the press made their choice after they realized Hillary was a walking scandal. Notice they waited until the delegate math favored Obama before probing much into the Rezko thing.

LASunsett said...

//When she challenged him on support from bigots like Farrakhan, he didn't want to renounce and reject the support. She pushed him, and finally he said something like, "Okay, I renounce it and reject it. Whatever makes you comfortable."//

This, more than anything, is what may do him in. He comes across as so elusive, saying the things that he knows what his fan club wants to hear.

In this instance, he seemed caught a little off-guard. He was penned in and had nowhere else to go. I am not convinced that he meant it, by virtue of his words and his body language.

LASunsett said...

//We do not need another Jimmy Carter, but I would be happy to settle for another John Kennedy.//

We'll never know what JFK would have accomplished had he lived. In my view, he would not represent the current generation's worldview.

If he were on the scene today, he'd be more camparable with moderates like Sam Nunn, Dick Lugar, and McCain. I don't think he'd represent the Obama and Hillary wings like they would like to think.

LASunsett said...

//Oddly Barack, whether by design or not, has made that more pronounced by taking the high road and not playing the race card. //

Barack hasn't personally played it, but his surrogates played it when Bill said the fairy tale thing. If Hillary wins more by staying negative, I can see this getting very ugly.

Always On Watch said...

Dana Milbank, author of that WaPo article, isn't cutting any of the candidates a bit of slack. I admire that approach and, as a result, regularly Milbanks' articles on page A-2.