Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Company He Kept

Although it might be accused of drawing guilt by association, a Chicago area paper, The Daily Herald, today takes a troubling look at the ethically-compromised political environment in which Barack Obama cut his teeth. And it's clear that the Land of Lincoln these days doesn't produce too many Honest Abes.

Here's a teaser:

"When Barack Obama announced his candidacy for president from the steps of the Old State Capitol, he described Springfield as the crucible where he learned the art of politics and bridging division.

"It was here in Springfield where I saw all that is America converge," he told a crowd of thousands that frigid February day in 2007. "It was here where we learned to disagree without being disagreeable. That it is possible to compromise so long as you know those principles that can never be compromised. And that so long as we are willing to listen to each other we can assume the best in people instead of the worst."

One has to wonder today what Springfield Obama was talking about.

Given complete control of state government, Illinois Democrats have produced unbalanced budgets, callous funding cuts, and antagonistic gridlock. Yet the Democratic leader Obama describes as his political mentor believed state lawmakers deserved a pay raise for their work.

And the Democratic governor whose administration is under criminal investigation is quick to remind anyone listening of Obama's ties to those in trouble. Plus, the Democrat who Obama backed for Cook County Board president produced the nation's highest sales tax.

Sheesh, it seems like enough to make Obama bid aloha to his adopted Land of Lincoln and start calling himself a Hawaiian Democrat. In the midst of Obama's shining moment in Denver this week, the Illinois Democratic Party could be a political blemish."

Of course, that's all behind Obama now; it's all ancient history.

Or is it?

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