Daily archives: March 4th, 2008

It’s Officially McCain

CNN has projected that John McCain now has enough delegates to clinch the Republican nomination for president. Mike Huckabee is not on CNN conceding to John McCain.

Huckabee has class. He has some evolutionary problems, but he’s a nice guy. Our astronomer friend may disagree (Huckabee = very very very bad guy), but I think he’s a nice guy. His appearance on Saturday Night Live was very funny.

But we’re officially up against McCain.

I have major concerns about McCain, and you should too. Thomas “Tip” O’Neill, longtime Speaker of the House, once said, “All politics is local,” and Illinois is feeling terribly the effects of the Two Trillion Dollar War. Bob Herbert really drives that home today in the New York Times:

The war in Iraq will ultimately cost U.S. taxpayers not hundreds of billions of dollars, but an astonishing $2 trillion, and perhaps more. There has been very little in the way of public conversation, even in the presidential campaigns, about the consequences of these costs, which are like a cancer inside the American economy.

McCain said we could be there 100 years, and he wants to make the Bush tax cuts permanent. That’s a plan for horrible disaster.

McCain is a nice guy. Huckabee is a nice guy. Their policies would tear us apart.

Remember this number?


That’s our National Debt. If you go to that page now, the number will be higher. That’s George Bush’s legacy. And here’s the price tag on Iraq right now:

The War in Iraq Costs


Illinois has paid the following

The War in Iraq Costs


That money is gone, and we’re not finished yet. McCain has a plan, after all. A Hundred-Year-Plan. We must learn patience, because, one day, 100 years or so down the road, we will finally know peace in Iraq.  Perhaps, too, the entire world will finally know peace.

America will be long gone, of course, probably bought out by Japan and China who currently own much of our national debt.

But there will be peace at last in Iraq.


Out With It, Senator

As Ohio, Texas, Rhode Island and Vermont head to the polls today in Democratic primaries, the Chicago Sun-Times’ Lynn Sweet reports that Senator Barack Obama was “thrown seriously off message being asked about influence peddler Tony Rezko and why his campaign at first denied his economic adviser Austan Goolsbee met the Canadian consul in Chicago and talked about NAFTA, some reporters — me included — wanted him to take more questions.”

Sweet and other top Chicago journalists took Obama to task, and Barack did not handle this one well.

“You may still have questions, which I am happy to answer,” Obama said to Marin, adding it is not fair to “suggest somehow” he has been trying to hide something.

Soon after he said, “If there is a specific question that you have, Carol, I’ll be happy to respond to it.”

Obama added as the press conference progressed, “If there are specific requests in terms of information that you feel that you don’t yet have, we will be happy to talk about that.”

And then there was the fourth happy. “If there is a specific question that you have, I am happy to respond to it.”

For all the happy talk, nothing was forthcoming on Monday.

So Sweet concludes her column.

While I personally support Barack Obama for President, the journalist in me is wanting more from him on this matter. Too much is at stake, and if the Senator from Illinois does get the nod today, the questioning will only intensify. As many times as I have heard Obama speak, and in the personal conversations I’ve had with him, I’ve been impressed. But he has to do more on this matter.

Perhaps Sweet and her colleagues were over the top with their questions. But the others she mentions are not sensationalist. Carol Marin, for one, is at the top of her game as a journalist.

It was just Obama’s luck that by coincidence on this particular day he had a contingent of Chicago journalists to deal with who are not, well, shy because we have covered Obama for years. I was there, as well as Sun-Times political columnist Carol Marin and CBS2 political reporter Mike Flannery.

I was impressed during Obama’s run for the senate that he ran a clean campaign. But he will be confronted by many who do not play clean at all. He has to be ready for the worst dirt the right, center or left throw. And right now he’s raising more questions on this matter than he’s answering.

It’s hard to focus on a dream while denying the nightmares.