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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-24-2008, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
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Voter Unease With Obama Lingers Despite His Lead

Poll Finds Background, Experience
Are Advantages for McCain


By GERALD F. SEIB and LAURA MECKLER
July 24, 2008; Page A1

WASHINGTON -- Midway through the election year, the presidential campaign looks less like a race between two candidates than a referendum on one of them -- Sen. Barack Obama.

With the nominations of both parties effectively settled for more than a month, the key question in the contest isn't over any single issue being debated between the Democrats' Sen. Obama or the Republicans' Sen. John McCain. The focus has turned to the Democratic candidate himself: Can Americans get comfortable with the background and experience level of Sen. Obama? ...

Voter Unease With Obama Lingers Despite His Lead - WSJ.com
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-24-2008, 11:14 AM Thread Starter
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Obama's Experience Doesn't Match Up

Heading off on his week-long, high-profile tour of seven countries, Barack Obama defined the first part of the trip's purpose by telling reporters, "I want to, obviously, talk to the commanders and get a sense, both in Afghanistan and in Baghdad of . . . what . . . their biggest concerns are."

While the Iraqi effort is almost exclusively American now, Afghanistan is a NATO mission. Sen. Obama, chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on European and NATO affairs, had never visited Afghanistan, and has not bothered to hold a hearing of the subcommittee covering the countries for which it bears legislative oversight responsibility.

How does Mr. Obama's foreign policy résumé compare with the preparation of past presidential candidates?

Richard Nixon gathered vast international experience in extensive travels as vice president under Dwight D. Eisenhower. Following his 1960 loss to John F. Kennedy, Nixon made long trips to virtually every corner of the globe, quietly meeting with leaders and others from many walks of life. In October 1967 he published an article in the quarterly Foreign Affairs, "Asia after Vietnam," sketching the broad outlines of a plan for Asia policy following the termination of hostilities in Vietnam. It included a broad hint of what later blossomed as his stunning 1971 "opening" to China.

Lyndon Johnson traveled far and wide in his years in the Senate and as majority leader. He was a strong proponent of a bipartisan foreign and national security policy. Along with extraordinary congressional Democrats like Sens. Henry M. "Scoop" Jackson (Wash.), Richard B. Russell (Ga.) and John Sparkman (Ala.), and Reps. Sam Rayburn (Texas), Clement Zablocki (Wis.) and Dante Fascell (Fla.), Johnson's support for many Eisenhower policies helped forge a bipartisan national consensus on critical issues.

Gerald Ford spent a quarter century in the House of Representatives, always in the minority. He too gained solid experience in his travels around the globe. He gained practical experience in the appropriations process, foreign affairs and defense.

Jimmy Carter assumed the presidency at a tumultuous moment in American political history, but with no significant foreign experience. Despite brokering an Egyptian-Israeli accord, the enduring Middle East crisis shows that even one major step doesn't lead to lasting peace. Mr. Carter badly misjudged Soviet intentions and capabilities, standing helplessly by as Soviet invaders crushed Afghanistan in 1979 and the U.S. ambassador was assassinated in Kabul. In November 1979, 52 U.S. diplomats were seized in Iran and held captive for 444 days.

In April 1980, Mr. Carter approved a disastrous, failed plan to rescue the hostages in Iran. It resulted in 12 American casualties and the resignation of his secretary of state, Cyrus Vance...

Obama's Experience Doesn't Match Up - WSJ.com

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-24-2008, 11:37 AM
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He's been around.


Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

-President Barack Obama, 1st Inaugural address
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-24-2008, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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He's been around.

So have a lot of alcoholics and addicts...

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-24-2008, 05:09 PM
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Where's the bounce?

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