Isn’t this rich? (via ST reader Mwalimu Daudi):
Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama said on Friday he expects Republicans to highlight the fact that he is black as part of an effort to make voters afraid of him.
“It is going to be very difficult for Republicans to run on their stewardship of the economy or their outstanding foreign policy,” Obama told a fundraiser in Jacksonville, Florida. “We know what kind of campaign they’re going to run. They’re going to try to make you afraid.
“They’re going to try to make you afraid of me. He’s young and inexperienced and he’s got a funny name. And did I mention he’s black?”
He said he was also set for Republicans to say “he’s got a feisty wife,” in trying to attack his wife Michelle.
“We know the strategy because they’ve already shown their cards. Ultimately I think the American people recognize that old stuff hasn’t moved us forward. That old stuff just divides us,” he said.
Does he mean “old stuff” like falsely playing the race card? Yeah, he’s right – that sure does divide people, and he should know, considering how his and his campaign’s use of it (along with some of his prominent supporters use of it as well) against Hillary and Bill Clinton during the primaries and caucuses helped divide his own party, something the sainted Barry O. will never take responsiblity for.
Now, just who is Obama talking about when he says Republicans will attack him on his race? John McCain? The national GOP? Can’t be, because neither to date have launched (nor will they) any radio or TV ad disparaging Obama’s race. Rather, his record and experience has been questioned (of course that was seen in the primaries by some as a “racial” attack when it came from the Clintons). Is he talking about Republican 527s? Can’t be, because to date, in spite of his bogus claim to the contrary, no major GOP 527s even exist to take on the Herculean ManOfHopeyChange, via a “race” attack or any other.
Or wait, maybe he’s talking about Republicans like Rush Limbaugh, who he dishonestly accused of starting and spreading the rumor that the Michelle Obama “whitey” tape exists, when in actuality the man conducting that train has been the liberal, foaming at the mouth rabid Hillary Clinton supporter Larry “it’s easy to see why Rove’s mother killed herself” Johnson. Oh yes, he pointed out on his “Fight the Smears” site that Larry Johnson was “helping” to spread the rumor, but he failed to note who Larry Johnson was, and dedicated a whole page to saying the “whitey” tape rumors were started and spread by Republicans (which I wrote about at length here). He also failed to mention that prominent liberal Bob Beckel was all but confirming such a tape existed at one point. There’s a lot of blame to go around for the spread of that rumor, and the vast majority of it can be pinned squarely on liberals.
On the other hand, as I noted earlier, Obama himself, his campaign, and his campaign’s surrogates reapeatedly and falsely played the race card against the Clintons during the primaries and caucuses and the media completely gave them a pass on it (no surprises there). Obama himself sat silently in the pews of TUCC for 20 years while his “former pastor” repeatedly made nasty racist remarks against white people, including the current administration, and only strongly renounced Rev. Wright when he accused him of playing politics with the issue. Not only that, but DNC chair Howie Dean, seen here getting chummy with Barry O. on an airplane Thursday, viciously played the race card against Republicans back in February with this disgusting comment made in front of a black audience:
Howard Dean showed up to talk about Black History Month but the focus quickly changed to politics Tuesday night in ICC Auditorium.
The Chairman of the Democratic National Committee and former Governor of Vermont contrasted the two parties’ presidential candidates, saying that with a woman and an African-American as the two front-runners, the Democratic field “looks like America” while the all-white male Republican field “looks like the 1950s and talks like the 1850s.”
What was Obama’s response?
Obama surrogate and fellow Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) took a blatant racist cheap shot at President Bush over the Hurricane Katrina response when she was running for election in 2006 against incumbent Senator Jim Talent. Her comments?:
George Bush let people die on rooftops in New Orleans because they were poor and because they were black.
And how about other politicians (many of them black) in Obama’s party who have launched similar baseless attacks against Bush and other Republicans for years? These race hustlers routinely get away with mischaracterizing the GOP position on many sensitive issues related to race, and they falsely accuse the right of “racism” every chance they get.
Sort of like Barack Obama is doing now.
To me, this line of attack is one of the most disappointing aspects of Obama’s campaign, a campaign many ill-informed observers have classified as one that has “transcended race.” Really? When some of your supporters tout your “blackness” as a reason to vote for you, is that “transcending race”? When you, your campaign, and its surrogates falsely play the race card against your opponent, is that “transcending race”? When 90%+ of black voters who voted in the primaries and caucuses voted for you over your white opponent even though your platforms weren’t that different, is that “transcending race”?
Don’t get me wrong: Unlike the Revs. Sharpton’s and Jackson’s past tries at winning the nomination, Obama’s campaign hasn’t solely been won due to race card playing – he’s tapped into the hearts and minds of close to half the electorate who appear to be eager for a “change” of some sort, and his repeated use of the buzzword (along with “hope”), along with his charisma and charm, as well as a huge helping hand from the mainstream media, all helpfully aided him in his quest for the Dem nomination. But make no mistake about it, no successful black politician’s campaign can fully “transcend race” until they themselves refuse to play the race card playing games their fellow (liberal) black politicians often do, and until they themselves effectively put a lid on those on their side of the aisle who have suggested that their “blackness” is another reason we should vote for them. Not only that, but it’s a big help for those black politicians to resist the urge to blame legitimate criticisms of their record on “race.” To be sure, there will always be a few fruitcakes on the fringe who will attack a black opponent solely on the basis of their race, but they are few and far in between, and the black candidate (hopefully) will recognize it as such, and not use it to mischaracterize an entire party as racists who have no other platform to run on.
Those are ideals that I had hoped candidate Obama would take to heart to while running for president, and early on, it appeared that he would. I thought to myself that, hey, if by chance Obama was elected as president, there was a strong possibility that he would reject the usual racial games played by some of his fellow black (and white) liberal politicos, and we could actually have a fairly fruitful dialogue about race. But the longer the race for the nomination went on, the more I and many others saw what he, his campaign, and campaign surrogates were willing to say and do to help him along the way when it came to the issue of race. In effect, he/they have proved themselves no better than the Sharptons or Jacksons of this country, who have overtly used the race card for years. In the case of Obama, the use of the race card most of the time has been subtle, but in the end when you’ve ended up dividing your party, in part, over the use of it, and further dividing the country, whether or not your race card playing has been overt or subtle really makes no difference. The end result is the same.
If the man who has claimed to want to “unite” America in part by “bringing Republicans and Democrats together” thinks he can do so in spite of launching this type of attack, he better think again.
Update: Baldilocks unloads on Obama’s attack:
Most people couldn’t care less about your name and your color, Senator Obama. They fear being lead by you because you have no substantive legislative record, you’re a chronic liar and, after explicitly stating that you choose your friends carefully, you have repeatedly and systematically made friends with people who hate this country.
You would “bridge the divide,” Senator, by burning that bridge.
Folks, don’t let this Sower of Discord shut you up.