Since I live in Illinois I hear more than my fair share of the hype about our charismatic and appealing Senator Barack Obama (D. – IL), who is seen by some as a viable presidential candidate in 2008. It appears that there is a substantial group of Democrats who want anybody but Hillary (Sen. Hillary Clinton, D. – NY), who is seen as too polarizing. If former Vice-President Al Gore does not run, and this is still anybody’s guess, then Obama’s chances dramatically increase, so it seems.
Eric Zorn, Chicago Tribune columnist, summed up the case for Obama’s run in ‘08 in yesterday’s edition (May 31). Zorn wrote that he was fully aware of Obama’s shortcomings; e.g., little foreign policy experience, a complete lack of accomplishments on the national stage, and an apparent unwillingness to spend his political capital on unpopular positions. He writes, “Plans and philosophies are important, sure. But everyone in the game has a surplus of those.” Zorn even admits that Obama has already made clumsy moves that have alienated “his core supporters.” But none of this deters Zorn, and others, from promoting Obama as the best candidate to lead the party in 2008. Why? He answers in this amazing sentence: