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Thread: Dowd on Obama: Can He Crush Hillary?

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    Dowd on Obama: Can He Crush Hillary?


    OP-ED COLUMNIST
    June 17, 2007

    Can He Crush Hillary?


    By MAUREEN DOWD

    WASHINGTON
    The busty brunette wriggles around in her pink bikini beside a picture of Barack Obama frolicking in the Hawaiian surf. She continues undulating in red underwear emblazoned with the word “Obama.” And, next to a picture of the senator in a suit, she stands proudly, wearing her own dark suit and a political-helpmate smile.

    “Does Barack Obama’s wife have something to worry about?” John Gibson teased on Fox News.

    Michelle doesn’t have to worry about “Obama Girl,” the model Amber Lee Ettinger, who stars in the music video sweeping the Web, in which she lip-syncs a song called “I Got a Crush on Obama.” The sultry-catchy lyrics include “You’re into border security/let’s break this border between you and me/universal health care reform/it makes me warm.”

    But Obama may have to worry about Obama Girl. For one thing, Amber — whose résumé boasts that she was a “featured cage dancer” in the movie “Uptown Girls” — isn’t even sure she’s going to vote for her video dreamboy. “We’ll see,” she told ABC’s Jake Tapper. “Maybe.”

    And for another, Obama has been trying to beef up his image for months — including writing a platitudinous manifesto in the new Foreign Affairs — but the buzz is still about his beefcake side. The Democrat who’s so afraid of looking like a pretty boy is once more drawing attention for his more superficial charms.

    When I stopped in a Ralph Lauren shop the other day, the sales staff had just sent off some clothes for an Obama photo shoot for a GQ cover.

    At his first news conference after he announced last February, Obama chastised reporters for writing about how good he looked in a swimsuit, and he defended hiring oppo-researchers, saying that it was “essential to democracy” to compare and contrast the candidates on the issues.

    So why would his aides send two sneering memos about the Clintons’ finances to reporters this week, on a not-for-attribution condition?

    That’s not sleazy so much as stupid.

    First of all, they didn’t need to do anything. Other Democratic campaigns were already pelting reporters with e-mail pointing out the possible juicy conflicts in the Clinton filings.

    If the Obama Boys were determined to whack the Clintons on greed, they should have done so openly. Their clumsy attempt at cloak-and-dagger was bound to fail.

    A reporter gave their “classified” memos to the Clinton camp, and the Clinton camp gleefully spread them around to other reporters.

    The Obama Boys’ inept leaking was compounded by over-the-top writing. They angered Indian-Americans, who accused them of stereotyping, and the campaign had to apologize. Under a flippant headline referring to “Hillary Clinton (D-Punjab),” one memo reported that Bill Clinton collected $300,000 for two speeches from Cisco in 2006 and Hillary accepted almost $60,000 in contributions from Cisco employees, even though the company was outsourcing jobs to India.

    The critique also stressed how rich Bill Clinton has grown from his friendship with the California supermarket mogul Ron Burkle. Ron lets his pal Bill fly on his plane and brought him into his Yucaipa fund, which, the Obama memo tut-tuts, has investments in astrological software and the distribution of Playboy.

    One question I’d like to ask the Leo who would be First Lad: When you rake in $10 million a year from speeches, do you really need that $150,000 for speaking to the Boys and Girls Club of L.A.?

    Hillaryland was panting for an opportunity to paint Obama as a hypocrite for saying he was different and above it all, while acting the same. And its best ally in undermining Obama is Obama, who hoists his pedestal so high he’s bound to fall off. He seems more intent on proving he’s pure than proving he’s tough.

    The Clintons act high-minded and do-gooding, while employing a staff of hit men. Obama is tangled in contradictions of high and low, saint and killer, while Hillary moves like a shark.

    “She’d lean over and bite his ear off if that’s what it takes,” says Charlie Cook, the political analyst. “The question is, will he do what it takes to win? This is a guy who did not have to deal with a single negative ad being run against him in the primary and general campaigns for the Senate. It was almost an immaculate conception.”

    Obama is too busy modeling to make this point, but the Clinton financial disclosures raise a big question: Do we want the country run again by a couple who get so easily wrapped around the fingers of anyone who is rich? As long as a guy was willing to give them millions, would it matter if his name were Al Capone?

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    That was about 90% inane. (And the other 10% wasn't that great either.) Par for the course as far as Dowd is concerned.

    Guy

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    wired for hound papsrus's Avatar
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    Dowd can be biting when she wants. Not here.

    This preoccupation with all things superficial (Obama's looks) is bothersome, more so because it seems to be a main staple of the Beltway press (see Mitt's broad shoulders, Thompson's manly smells, Edwards' haircuts, Hillary's face lifts, etc., etc).

    As for the Obama camp's memo blunder, are we supposed to be outraged that the Clintons have made a lot of money off of their investments? Isn't that supposed to be an admirable accomplishment?

    The Obama campaign was silly to imply there was some sort of ethical duplicity there, IMO. Anyone who owns an index fund is ethically compromised, by this standard.
    "There comes a time in all of our lives where silence is a betrayal." -- The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

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    Registered User 128Bit_Encryption's Avatar
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    ".....are we supposed to be outraged that the Clintons have made a lot of money off of their investments? Isn't that supposed to be an admirable accomplishment?"

    Well, according to Billy O'Reilly and Sean Hannity, yes..........
    "When you hear music, after it's over, it's gone in the air; you can never recapture it again" -Eric Dolphy, Hilversum, Holland, 2 June1964

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    Registered User Saundra Hummer's Avatar
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    Hillary's staff is slick and seasoned, Barack's Obama's?, well it's learning as it goes along. Too bad, as we'd all like to see a more even playing field.

    Obama needs to stay on the high road, and get his staff to keep quiet as they sound like sullen teenagers who haven't quite learned the ropes while they're being eaten up will silly jealousy's. The best way in the world to lose in love and in politics.

    The thing is, the press will do the chewing up, and who ever learns how to keep the press on their side the most will probably do the best in the end.

    Barack had a great deal going with the American people, he needs to keep it, not lose it due to silly staffers, or even his own complaints; his own dissatisfaction with how his campaign is going. He really does need to keep what he feels about his staff to himself as well, that will probably help him the most.
    Sandi from Hermosa Beach

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    Registered User Saundra Hummer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 128Bit_Encryption View Post
    ".....are we supposed to be outraged that the Clintons have made a lot of money off of their investments? Isn't that supposed to be an admirable accomplishment?"

    Well, according to Billy O'Reilly and Sean Hannity, yes..........
    Oh, and about Billy and Sean,

    Their opinions; Billy O'Reilly's and Sean Hannity's; really don't matter, as they making their own mega bucks off hate and bile while dressing it up in a pink party dress. Who cares what Hannity and O'Reilly have to say on the issue of Hillary & Bill Clintons money making capabilities, at least they aren't down in the muck wallowing about. They're nothing like Neil Bush, not that I've ever heard. Remember how he bilked retiree's out of their savings in the Silverado Savings & Loan debacle? Leaving so many destitute? Did any of the Bush's money go to help those poor souls out?

    O'Reilly and Hannity now that's a different issue; they're making their money by selling dirt, and hate filled dialogue, so how is it that they're so judgemental in how they view others? I find it odd, because when it comes down to it, lilly white they're not.

    Talk about playing to our basest instincts; talk about pandering to their wacked out fans; they do that each and every time they go on the air. So, when it comes to how others make their money, unless it's by bribery, graft, embezzlement or at the point of a gun, who really cares what they're saying about anyone? A bit of looking inward might set them on their ears. No, just kidding, as they know full well what they're all about, and they're using these ploys to keep raking it in, laughing, as they say, all the way to the bank. I doubt they themselves believe even half of what they're saying, but it's filling up their pockets, letting them live large. O'Reilly says he's a simple man, well Bill, just take a living wage then when you negoiate your next contract, instead of that big paycheck.
    Sandi from Hermosa Beach

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