Sunday, February 11, 2007

Not now...

Barack Obama announced his candidacy for President yesterday. I like Obama; I, like a lot of people, was impressed by his speech at the Democratic National Convention and I loved his funny appearance on Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me. I start listening when he comes on the radio (I turn off the radio when Shrub comes on).

I am one of the people who likes him without being able to say why, but I think part of it is that Obama's my peer - he's only seven years older than I am. I think that's because I became politically aware while the oldest man elected to the Presidency got older and older. Bill Clinton is twenty-two years older than I and even I thought of him as a "young man" when I was 23 and he announced. I liked the statements he made in his announcement speech in Springfield, IL, yesterday, good solid Democratic values and goals that I support.

Side note: My favorite pun for this week was on a homemade sign held by someone in the Springfield crowd that read BARACK THE VOTE.

I don't want Obama to be running in this cycle. It's not because "America isn't ready for a Black President" and it's not because he is the child of an immigrant. It's not because he hasn't gotten specific about his programs (and how to pay for them) yet. It's not because he may not be a foreign policy wonk.

It's because he's only been serving in the Senate since 2004. There's been a lot made the last several years of being an "outsider" in the halls of power, in DC and in Sacramento (and probably in other capitals as well), but I think that Obama will get creamed by the pundits who will hammer over and over on his lack of experience at the national level. It is very very difficult to come back from losing a Presidential election: Look at John Kerry or Al Gore. I'd much rather see Obama stay in the Senate and run for the first time in 2012 or 2016.

Of course, now he's announced, it doesn't matter what I wish (and didn't anyway). I'll be supporting Obama until he loses or wins the primary. The fact is, however, that in the Presidential election I will be supporting whoever isn't the Republican, which in the end isn't much of a choice.

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