Monday, November 19, 2007

Obama Daily Roundup: Nov 19th

-A new ABC News/Washington Post poll of Iowa has Barack Obama in the lead.

Polling period and polling of Iowa in general is generally a bunch of bullshit but this poll is already being hugely hyped across our media. And in our polarized society (post on that soon) the presumed roadrunner can matter, plus it adds to the fake momentum that our media decides. And it in general is part of a uptik for Obama in the polls so it clearly means he is making progress. I've been in despair a lot, thinking he can never win Iowa. But now it seems like he has a real shot. And let me say this here and now. If he wins Iowa. Barack Obama will be the next President of the United States. Bam. That's how important Iowa is.

-On that note Chris Miller, progressive organizer, former Midwest Field Director and current Minnesota State Director for the Obama campaign sent me a e-mail asking me to go down to Iowa. Clearly a huge push is being made to get trained volunteers down there. Already over a 1,000 are on the streets canvassing every weekend. Soon that will be over 2,000. Obama has a very strong ground game in Iowa.

-Today at Iowa Central Community College in Fort Dodge, Iowa. Obama unveiled his plan to strengthen community colleges. Affordable higher education is one of the most important things to a strong middle class and a general economic shared prosperity. That has been one of the highest points for the Democratic congress and it has been one of Obama's focuses in his time in the Senate. After all the first bill he introduced was to make collage more affordable. Anyways the plan would create a American Opportunity Tax Credit. From the campaign "This credit is fully refundable and will pay for the first $4,000 of a college education---which would cover the cost of attending community college for most high school graduates in America." You can read the full plan here.

-McClatchey has a great story up about Obama's collage activism and his first big speech.

-SFBO has their weekly Student Rewind up. Check it out.

-Matthew Yglesias is one of the best wonk bloggers out there. And on Obama and Clinton's forign policy. He nails it.

On foreign policy, though, I have no idea what direction Clinton wants to take the country. Barack Obama, by opposing the invasion of Iraq from the beginning, by proposing a "grand bargain" with Iran, and by promising a return to our commitment under the Non-Proliferation Treaty to work toward the goal of complete eradication of nuclear weapons from the world has sent me important signals about his goals. He, like me, wants us to return to a policy grounded in international cooperation and efforts to strengthen international law and international institutions. John Edwards has staked out similar policy terrain and compensated for his bad earlier position on Iraq by boldly criticizing the "war on terror" concept.

Clinton, by contrast, hasn't done any of that. She's gestured in the direction of enhanced diplomacy with Iran, but her Foreign Affairs essay pointedly didn't pull full normalization of relations on the table as a potential carrot and she hasn't espoused a push for a "grand bargain." On nukes, she's taken the very odd middle path of joining Obama and Edwards in praising the Schultz/Perry/Kissinger/Nunn initiative while mischaracterizing what they say as a call for "reducing reliance on nuclear weapons" -- which just isn't what they said.

(Emphasis added)

-He also reminds us how much of a neocon likely Clinton SoS and Democratic neocon Richard Holbrooke. His final words basically reflects my thoughts.
I'm not very excited by the prospect of Hillary Clinton making him Secretary of State.

-The Obama campaign blog profiles fellow Obama netroots activist "Mid America Mom" aka Tamara.

-Obama blogger wizinit has his latest diary on the Nevada caucuses. Well worth the read.

Last Word:

In 45 days the undemocratic system of the Iowa caucuses will likely choose the next president of the United States. And in 2008 we have more at stake then any election for a long time. Care about the direction of our country. Care about civil rights, womens rights, workers rights, civil liberties. Do you believe "I am my brothers keeper, I am my sisters keeper"? Do you believe we all have a collective responsibility for lifting up the poor, building infrastructure, education for all and so much more. Do you believe government can do good if it gets a chance? Do you believe that together we can make a difference in the world? If so I believe we should all give everything we have for Barack Obama. He has committed his life to the struggle for justice. He's not perfect. No one is and he's just one man. But together we can change the world.

Once that clock hits zero we will have a new president. And here is the man I hope will fill that office. Making his case.

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