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Monday, August 18, 2008

So What Did Obama Do in Albuquerque Today?

Despite having a cold, Barack Obama reportedly was seen exercising at the downtown Health & Wellness gym early today. Later in the morning, Obama talked to a group of forty-some women invited to a roundtable discussion about pay equity and the economy at the Main Library in downtown Albuquerque. Click to read about the discussion and see a video clip. And here's some photos and more on the story.

Obama also appeared at a jam-packed townhall meeting at the Rio Grande High School gym in Albuquerque's South Valley this afternoon, and then took questions from the crowd. With audience members urging Obama and pointing to a person in the audience, the very first question was from (the infamous) Dallas Timmons, an Albuquerque Dem Party Ward Chair that many of you know from Meetup and the activism scene. Great job, Dallas, putting in a plug for our hard-working Bernalillo County Party folks, and in confronting Obama about his perceived fades on Iraq and FISA. You can see the exchange in the video above. The clip seems to be all over the internet now. Dallas, can I have your autograph?

As to Obama's answer, it's probably true that BushCo has messed up so badly that at least some of the troops coming out of Iraq will have to be sent to Afghanistan. I do take issue with his "exclusivity" argument about FISA. Many top legal scholars who have studied the bill that passed have determined that the so-called "exclusivity" of the bill in requiring oversight over the use of surveillence is not what it seems, or what Obama claims it is. You can read about the controversy here (if you can deal with some legalese). I think Obama handled the challenge well, however, seeming to take it in stride and complimenting Dallas on her "feistiness."

During his speech, Obama made a point to reassure Dems that he won't take the attacks of the GOP and its third-party groups lying down:

In this clip, Obama talks about the GOP's tradition of negative campaigning. "They don't know how to govern, but they know how to run a negative campaign." Consider the campaigns of McCain, Repub Senate candidate Steve Pearce and the GOP congressional candidate in NM-02, Ed "Cut Your Throats" Tinsley. Could they be categorized as anything but extremely negative, dishonest and full of personal attacks? As Obama says, "That's what they do. That's their politics."

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August 18, 2008 at 07:37 PM in 2008 General Presidential Election, Obama NM Campaign | Permalink


Dallas good job! Great question....very smoooooooooooth!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Mary Ellen | Aug 18, 2008 9:05:34 PM

Dallas totally kicked it. Obama has prepared himself for this answer.

Sheryl Crow and her band were totally into Barak. She tried to get his attention, but he did not call on her.

Bloggers and activists, keep after it. I remain hopeful that Obama will do his best to restore the rule of law. But the Telecoms have gotton away this time. Thanks Barak.

Posted by: bg | Aug 18, 2008 9:58:55 PM

Obama did not mention that he voted for all three amendments (Dodd, Feingold(?) and Bingaman) that provided for accountability to some extent. The one that got the most votes was sponsored by Senator Bingaman-- but the most was still only 42 Yeas. So, faced with the inevitable, he voted for the bill.

Posted by: Ellen Wedum | Aug 18, 2008 10:36:46 PM

That's the difference between taking a stand and going along isn't it?

I have hope Obama will do much better once he gets in office and has increased support from Congress. But I never think it's a good thing to let politicos off the hook. We need to keep the pressure on, always, because there are very powerful and wealthy people constanting pushing them to support very bad things.

Posted by: | Aug 19, 2008 2:17:32 AM

This is the kind of sinewy, respectful political dialogue I LOVE to see. Great question, firmly and respectfully posed. And Obama's answer . . . well, unlike what many politicos at this level do, he answered the questions – ALL of 'em. And showed that the answers revolved around complex points. And he wasn't afraid to say that compromise is what democracy is about - something the other party has largely forgotten.

Posted by: < | Aug 19, 2008 6:49:05 AM

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