During his foreign policy address this week, he managed to snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory over the surge issue, too. While everyone of all political stripes are admitting that the surge is working and dramatically reducing the level of bloodshed in Iraq, Obama managed to complain that the Iraqis aren't spending as much in rebuilding their own country as a result of the surge.
It's a funny thing, the old school media's infatuation with Obama. Sometimes it's obvious, like Chris Matthews admitting to the thrill up his leg when the anointed one speaks; other times, it's fairly subtle.
This week, the New York Times breathlessly revealed the results of a survey that suggested that 80% of black Americans have a favorable impression of Obama compared with 30% of whites.
The clear insinuation in the article is that white America is so bigoted that it couldn't possibly vote for a black man. Remember how West Virginia was pummeled in the press during the primary election there?
And yet, there is certainly another racial reality at play here. Isn't it possible -- even likely -- that many black Americans are supporting Sen. Obama simply because he is black?
If a white voter (re: West Virginia) admitted to voting for a candidate simply because of the color of his skin, we routinely label that person as a racist.
So why does the black voter who is doing the exact same thing get a pass?
I often ask black callers to my show questions about Sen. Obama's policy positions, especially those who describe themselves as Republicans or conservatives. Their lack of knowledge is astounding. Abortion, taxes, health care, it doesn't matter, they don't really know much about him at all.
But they sure do like him.
They say he makes them "feel good." He's a "change." He's going to "end war." He's a "new kind of politician."
Ask them what that means, and sadly, they don't really know. There's nothing new about the failed, radical, liberal beliefs of the former community activist from Chicago. But try telling that to a black man or woman hellbent on voting for him.
The New York Times is right, there is still a political racial divide in this country. But as usual, the Times doesn't know who to blame.
If there are whites who won't vote for a black man simply because he's a black man, shame on them.
But if there are blacks who won't vote for a white man because he's not a black man, that's equally shameful. And every bit as bigoted as bigoted can be.
At the end of my interview with Sen. McCain, I told him how feisty he sounded, how fired up he seemed to be. He laughed.
That's what he's going to have to do in order to win the White House in November. The stakes are high and the deck is stacked against him.
But if he continues to remind the American people about the radical differences between a man who has fought in a war and another who simply reminds us of an actor who plays a president on television, John McCain will win.
And win big.
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