The meteoric political rise of Barack Obama is something rarely seen in American politics. In 2000, he was soundly defeated in his first and only bid for a spot in the U.S. House of Representatives. Four years later, he was propelled into the Senate and, after serving one-third of his term, is a presidential front-runner with the wind at his back.Most Americans choose their president the way a 7-year-old chooses her Barbie doll. If you simply want a president who is handsome, charismatic and articulate, then Obama is your candidate.
“Obama watching” is a relatively new spectator sport. Therefore, voters tend to project their own political views onto him. Warning: There is no “satisfaction guaranteed or you vote cheerfully refunded” in politics. This is for real!
Obama may be a pretty face, but he is not a blank slate. Obama’s seven years in the Illinois Legislature and two years in the United States Senate paint a picture of an extreme liberal to the left of every major presidential candidate, including Hillary Clinton and Al Gore.
The NAACP, National Organization for Women, Planned Parenthood and the Children’s Defense Fund (created by Hillary friend Marion Wright Edelman to promote liberal causes on behalf of “the children”) have given him a 100 percent on his voting record for one or more years. Conversely, he has earned a “0” or an “F” from the Federation for American Immigration Reform, Americans for Tax Reform, the National Rifle Association and the National Right to Life Committee. That takes real work!
Much can be learned about his temperament by reading and studying his books “Dreams from My Father” and “The Audacity of Hope.” The latter is an upbeat, conciliatory saga written in political doublespeak. However, the former shows an angry young man, the son of a white American mother and a black Kenyan father who left the family when Obama was 2. Nevertheless, Obama chose to identify with his father’s family and has mistrust of most whites. At one point in his life, he rejected a white woman he loved because of the fear that he would have to gravitate toward her world.
One thing that makes Obama seem moderate is his contrast with other prominent black leaders like Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and the late Malcolm X, whom he greatly admired. In “Dreams,” Obama shares one of the “tricks” he learned at an early age: “People were satisfied so long as you were courteous and smiled and made no sudden moves. They were more than satisfied; they were relieved – such a pleasant surprise to find a well-mannered young black man who didn’t seem angry all the time.”
However, some of Obama’s anger is apparent in the legislation he has supported:
* In 2005, he backed a bill that would have allowed Native Hawaiians (direct lineal descendants of the aboriginal, indigenous native people who lived in the Islands prior to 1893) to set up their own governmental body and to open government-to-government negotiations with the United States.
* In 1999, as an Illinois legislator, he sponsored a bill to require police to compile statistics on the racial identity of all motorists they stop in response to allegations that black drivers were stopped more frequently than white drivers.
* In 1999, he cast the only “no” vote against bill that denies early release to sexual predators for good behavior.
* In 2001, he voted against a bill that would have allowed the death penalty to be imposed if a gang member committed murder “in furtherance of the activities of a gang,” saying that it would treat black and Latino people unfairly.
* Gay marriage
* Government run health care (socialized medicine)
* Amnesty for illegal aliens
* The death tax
However, Obama’s most controversial stand to date involves abortion and what most consider to be “infanticide.”
* In a 2004 fund-raising letter for her husband, Michelle Obama referred to the brutal partial birth abortion as a “legitimate medical procedure.”
* In 2001 and 2002, Obama was the only Illinois senator to speak against the “Born Alive Infants Protection Act” on the Senate floor and in 2003 killed the bill in committee. This would have outlawed a practice first uncovered in his state known as a “live birth abortion,” where labor is induced and an infant is delivered prematurely only to be put in some dark corner of a hospital until she expires on her own.
Thankfully, the U.S. Congress outlawed the practice before Obama arrived in Washington after most pro-abortion supporters dropped their opposition for fear of appearing extreme.
Obama: The packaging is moderate; the rhetoric is soothing; but his record is one of a hard-core liberal. Let the voters beware!