Sunday, February 18, 2007

Mary Mitchell has the Obama beat, part 2...

Let's look at today's column. Obama takes a shot at the two South Carolina lawmakers who don't believe Senator Obama can win. Let's have a little look...

Although Obama didn't address the Jackson controversy during his speech, he took clear aim at Ford's a-black-man-can't-win attitude -- linking those remarks to historical markers in the civil rights movement.

"Someone said if Obama was president that we would lose up and down the ticket -- governor's race, state senator races, local races -- can't have a black man at the top of the ticket," he told a frenzied crowd of about 2,800 people.

"I know this . . . that when folks were saying we are going to march for our freedoms, somebody said you can't do that.

"When somebody said let's sit at the lunch counter, [somebody said] we can't do that. ... When somebody says a woman belongs in the kitchen -- and not in the work force, they said we can't do that.

"I don't believe in this can't do, won't do, won't even try style of leadership. Don't believe in that," he told a screaming crowd. "Yes, we can."
Now that's how you put them in their places. So he's responded and it'll be interesting to see him talk more about these types of controversies as he goes forward. Now I want to show how Mitchell starts this column...

When Sen. Barack Obama arrived here Friday night for a rally at the Metropolitan Convention Center -- his first trip to South Carolina as a presidential candidate -- things were in an uproar. The day before, he'd been rebuffed by state Sen. Darrell Jackson, one of the most prominent and politically influential black men in the state, in a deal that, as the late Lu Palmer used to say, "is enough to make a Negro turn black."

Jackson, also the pastor of a 10,000-member congregation, is the head of Sunrise Enterprises. The political consulting firm picked up a $10,000-a-month consulting contract with Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, apparently reneging on an earlier commitment to the Obama camp.

At the same time, another state senator, Robert Ford, was frantically backpedaling from earlier comments in which he defended his support of Clinton by arguing that Obama would drag the Democratic ticket down.

Woah, a piece of work this Jackson. This is another issue and our own powerful black lawmaker, Illinois Senate President Emil Jones attempted to address this topic a few weeks ago. The topic of blacks supporting Obama's fellow Senator Hillary Clinton. I blogged about this over at Illinoize...

Washington - Seeking to solidify African-American backing for Barack Obama’s presidential bid, Illinois Senate President Emil Jones Jr. told black Democrats meeting here last week they don’t “owe” anyone, alluding to, but not mentioning by name, Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Obama, said Jones, “is our son.”
So let's look at a little more of the story in South Carolina...

Edna R. Clifton, a senior African American who was born and raised in South Carolina, said Obama's biggest challenge in South Carolina -- where black mega-churches are plentiful and pastors are powerful -- will be educating black voters.

"It's the mentality of the people who are following these preachers," she said as she stood in an adoring throng waiting for Obama to take the stage.

"It's all about the money. Really, I think some of these pastors have been bought off."

Clifton said she likes Obama.

"I like what he is saying. He is a family man, and it's time for change," she said.

About half of the state's voters are African American, and with Obama's crossover appeal, he stands a realistic chance of winning in this early primary state.
Well so is it that they're being bought? It shouldn't surprise anyone that the Clinton machine has money. All that fundraising, but will that be enough can you buy a presidential primary anywhere?

Here's more about Sen. Obama in South Carolina...
Obama attended a private breakfast meeting with several local pastors Saturday morning before speaking at Claflin University in Orangeburg -- the country's oldest historically black college.

Johnnie Mitchell, an environmentalist who lives in Orangeburg, told me Friday before even hearing Obama speak that he wasn't buying the poll that showed African Americans favor Clinton over Obama 2-1.

"I'm not even going to think negative. I'm hoping not getting the nomination is not even an option."
A wise thing to do. I don't know if this is the Senator's time, but I do know that this upcoming primary season is going to be interesting. Since he has hit the national scene this most certainly will be his first serious election. Let's see if Obama can muster this challenge.

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