Carol Platt Liebau: Why Barack Will Wait

Monday, December 18, 2006

Why Barack Will Wait

Barack Obama is many things. Stupid isn't one of them. And that's why John Fund is right to question whether he'll actually run for president in 2008, despite all the cheerleading from the MSM.

Along with the attacks on his experience sure to come from the junkyard dogs of the Hillary Clinton camp, there will be well-founded questions about his very left-wing voting record:

The fact that he originally opposed the war in Iraq would help him with primary voters, but it's unclear how many Democrats want to plump for someone who, according to National Journal, has a more liberal voting record than Hillary Clinton. Last year Mr. Obama had a perfect 100% voting record from both the Americans for Democratic Action and the AFL-CIO.

His record as a state legislator is even more liberal. In 1996, he spoke out against the Defense of Marriage Act, which the Senate approved 85-14 and Mr. Clinton signed into law. He twice voted "present" on a bill to ban partial-birth abortions. In 1999 he was the only state senator to oppose a law that prohibited early prison release for sex offenders.

The only reason to run right now would be for vanity, and a panicky sense that the positive press won't last. Barack Obama is too serious about his ambitions to be vain, and wily enough to understand that he needs more experience, and some opportunities to put a more moderate gloss on his voting record.

Who wants to bet he won't run?


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