Thomas Sowell

 It will take money and lots of it to bring out the facts about Barack Obama's track record, and the media will undoubtedly criticize a "negative" campaign being waged against him. But the mainstream media can hardly be expected to bring the facts to the public's attention, since journalists are ideologically much closer to Obama than to Keyes.

 At stake is not only a much-needed U.S. Senate seat but the future ability of the Republican Party to attract and keep black candidates and voters. That is unlikely to happen if black candidates simply get sent out on suicide missions.

 This year, the voters in Illinois will have a very clear choice between a liberal and a conservative when they choose who will represent them in the U.S. Senate. So will voters nationally when it comes to the Presidential election.

 "Liberal" and "conservative" are not just arbitrary labels. Liberals and conservatives base themselves on opposite assumptions -- conflicting visions of the world as it is, and of what they think the world should be. The net result is that they disagree on issue after issue across the board.

 The question then is what each voter wants: More military spending? More welfare state spending? Gay marriage? Higher taxes? Bans against oil drilling? School vouchers? Judges who put criminals behind bars or judges who give suspended sentences and "community service"?

 Whatever each voter wants, the candidates have such different track records that the voters' choices should be easy to make this year, both in Illinois and nationwide in the Presidential election -- if people vote on the basis of issues.

 Too many people, however, vote on the basis of image, emotion, and rhetoric, which means that anything can happen, both at the polls this November and to our country in the years ahead.

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institute and author of The Housing Boom and Bust.

Creators Syndicate