Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Senator Obama On Face The Nation

Yesterday, Lara Logan interviewed Senator Obama on Face The Nation. Most people probably missed this, and it was likely due in no small part because CBS did not exactly advertise it. I would like to point out two quotes from this interview:

Logan: "And how do you compel Pakistan to act?"

Obama: "Well, you know, I think that the U.S. government provides an awful lot of aid to Pakistan, provides a lot of military support to Pakistan. And to send a clear message to Pakistan that this is important, to them as well as to us, I think that message has not been sent."

Logan: "Under what circumstances would you authorize unilateral U.S. action against targets inside tribal areas?"

Obama: "What I've said is that if we had actionable intelligence against high-value al-Qaeda targets, and the Pakistani government was unwilling to go after those targets, that we should. My hope is that it doesn't come to that - that in fact, the Pakistan government would recognize that if we had Osama bin Laden in our sights that we should fire or we should capture him."

I point this out for two reasons. First, despite his claims weeks ago that he had changed his tune about unilateral action in Pakistan, that plans still sits on the table. He would risk the alliance that we have with Pakistan just to snuff out a man that we are pretty sure is already dead. Second, he is speaking of acting unilaterally; a concept that he has railed against the president on, but it is seemingly all right for him.

Logan: "Okay, last question: There is a perception that you lack experience in world affairs."

Obama: "Right."

Logan: "Is this trip partly aimed at overcoming that concern, that, you know, there are doubts among some Americans that you could lead the country at war as commander in chief from day one?"

Obama: "You know, the interesting thing is that the people who are very experienced in foreign affairs, I don't think have those thoughts. The troops that I've been meeting with over the last several days, they don't seem to have those doubts. The objective of this trip was to have substantive discussions with people like President Karzai or Prime Minister Maliki or President Sarkozy or others who I expect to be dealing with over the next eight to ten years.

"It's important for me to have a relationship with them early, that I start listening to them now, getting a sense of what their interests and concerns are, because one of the shifts in foreign policy that I want to execute as president is giving the world a clear message that America intends to continue to show leadership, but our style of leadership is going to be less unilateral, that we're going to see our role as building partnerships around the world that are of mutual interest to the parties involved. And I think this gives me a head start in that process."

Last point first. Did he not just say above that he would act unilaterally in Pakistan? I believe he did so why is he now saying, at the end of the interview that we will not act in that fashion. This waffle may be minor to some, but to voters who are scrutinizing his every word an action now -- because of his incessant waffling -- this is amazing. He waited a whole fix or six minutes before changing his mind.

And as for the first point, while it may be a minor gaffe, it is a telling one. This man claims to have taught Constitutional Law, and he cannot remember what the length of the president's term is? It is four years. For more than that he has to win another election, and what is maddening about this statement is that he has not even won his first election yet. Talk about arrogance. The only way a person can get more than eight years in office is if they happen to be vice-president, and the president dies while in his first or second year in his first term. An elected president gets one four year term, and if he wins reelection, it is another four years. Someone want to hand the rookie a copy of the Constitution, please? He may need a crash course in it.



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