Where does Obama stand on the issues?

Since most people here buy into the craptacular spin from the Clintons that Obama doesn't have a position on anything I offer you the following links.

So, the next time someone tells you Obama does not have any positions, you can direct them to the following links. Which, of course, come straight off of his website.

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2008 Campaign Weekly Roundup (February 4-8, 2008)

[Republished from 2008Central.net]

A roundup for February 3-8 on the Democratic side...

  • Super Tuesday Results:
    • Hillary Clinton won Arizona, Arkansas, California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma and Tennessee.
    • Barack Obama won Alabama, Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota and Utah.
    • The winner of New Mexico is yet to be determined, but with 99% of precincts reporting Hillary Clinton is currently ahead by 1,123 votes.
  • Delegate Standings Projections (including superdelegates):
    • Hillary Clinton: 1076
    • Barack Obama: 1006
  • The Obama campaign has stepped up its argument that if Hillary Clinton is the nominee elected Democratic officials in conservative areas may suffer from a backlash by sending out a mailer that blames the Clintons for Democratic losses between during the 90's and the 2000 election.
  • The Clinton campaign clashes with MSNBC and just two days after TPM asks"Is Obama Being Hurt By MSNBC And His Other Media Worshippers?"
  • Debatarama: Hillary Clinton challenges Obama to a debate a week (including one on Fox News) between now and March 4.  After some back forth, the campaigns eventually agreed to hold two debates - one in Ohio and one in Texas.
  • Obama campaign pushes for the release of Hillary Clinton's tax returns.  When pressed on this issue during a press conference call, Clinton Communications Director obfuscated by asking "When will Senator Obama release the complete details of his relationship with Tony Rezko?"
  • Barack Obama picks up Washington's Governor Chris Gregoire; Clinton gets Rep. Norm Dicks.
  • Fund Race: Following reports that Hillary Clinton loaned her campaign $5 million dollars, the Obama campaign used this information to kick off a fundraising blitz, which the Clinton campaign countered.  Now that the dust has cleared, the totals so far since Super Tuesday show Obama with an edge, but Hillary Clinton isn't getting blown away:
    • Barack Obama: Over $7.5 million (figures disclosed yesterday, so this number is sure to be higher now)
    • Hillary Clinton: About $8 million; 75,000 new donors (figures disclosed today)
  • Bill Clinton promises to be nice going forward, clarifies his role in a Hillary Clinton administration; JW criticizes.

A roundup for February 3-8 on the Republican side...

  • Super Tuesday Results:
    • John McCain won Arizona, California, Connecticu, Delaware, Illinois, Missouri, New Jersey, New York and Oklahoma.
    • Mitt Romney won Alaska, Colorad, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota and Utah.
    • Mike Huckabee won Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Tennessee and West Virginia.
  • Delegate Standing Projections:
    • John McCain: 724
    • Mitt Romney: 281
    • Mike Huckabee: 196
    • Ron Paul: 14
  • Mitt Romney suspended his presidential campaign on February 6 and noted that he was motivated in part out of concern that continuing his quest would help get Obama or Clinton elected, which would mean surrender to terrorists (Romney's argument).
  • Fred Thompson endorsed John McCain and called on the rest of the party to get behind McCain.
  • Mike Huckabee promises to carry on with his campaign and demonstrated his commitment to the trail by appearing as a guest on the Tyra Banks Show (you have respect anyone that wants something so bad that they're willing to sit across from Tyra for an hour...shudder).
  • James Dobson backed Mike Huckabee; Huckabee's connection to televangelist Kenneth Copeland are likely to be the subject of a Senate investigation into Copeland's ministry (we blogged about Huckabee's connection to Copeland in late January).
  • Ron Paul's blimp was grounded after being vandalized.
  • Question: Ron Paul making a third party run?  Answer: No.
  • Cindy McCain taken to task on her "grudge list" among other things.

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2008Central.net's Presidential Election Podcast (01/27/08)

This podcast looks at (1) results of the South Carolina Democratic Primary; (2) a brief discussion about the media coverage of identity politics and (3) a look ahead to the Florida and February 5th primaries...

[Listen Online]

[Subscribe to 2008Central.net's Presidential Election Podcast]

Feel free to email us questions/suggestions for next week's podcast (you can also email an audio file of your question and we'll include it in the podcast).

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Some issues I want to see addressed

As a youngish person, the main issues for me are:

Social Security--making sure that I have it when I retire
Health care--universal access to medicine
Economy--job growth, fair wages, and access to low-cost housing
National security--working to end animosity against the US
Education--free or low-cost education as they have in Europe
Environment--creating a sustainable future
Developing world--making sure that people are being treated fairly

As baby-boomers age, people of so-called Gen-X and Gen-Y need to become political enough and confrontational enough to have our needs met. There are too many of us that working to enrich the baby boomer generation and those even older and not having basic needs met. We are unable to purchase houses and get ahead in the workplace. We are playing exorbitant rates for health care. We are in debt because tuition is so high. We need to have our voices heard so that we make sure that these issues are addressed in the campaign. I'm not hearing these issues being addressed enough. I want to know where each candidate stands.

I think that both Obama and Hillary have excellent ideas about health care. The Democrats have had stronger opinions against privatization of social security. (Is that good?)

What are your ideas on how the candidates are meeting issues that are important to youth?

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Edwards' (Seriously Flawed) Electability Argument

[Republished from 2008Central.net]

The Edwards campaign latest justification for remaining in the race is that John Edwards is the ONLY electable Democratic candidate (as opposed to a similar but very different argument that Edwards is more electable than the other candidates). The campaign started making this argument after Iowa and has expanded on it ever since.  Recently, Edwards has been arguing that he's the candidate that can take on John McCain, saying:

"I think it's important for us to have somebody run against McCain who can beat him..And national polls show that I'm the one who beats John McCain in the general election."

Rural Adviser to John Edwards, Mudcat Saunders echoed the campaign's assertion-fest with a post on Huffington Post.  Saunders states, but doesn't really substantiate this contention:
It should be clear to anybody with over a 50 IQ that my boy John Edwards, with his combination of red state electoral experience and toughness, is the only candidate who can beat John McCain. Whether you believe polls or not, polls from CNN to Rasmussen say just that.

And it should be equally as clear to anybody with over a 25 IQ that Obama and Clinton are going to render each other totally unelectable against any Republican, especially John McCain, by the time we get to the convention.

All the Republicans have to be loving this. Because the Democrat they don't want to face, John Edwards, is getting sandwiched between the coverage of this murderous cat fight between two so-called "historical" candidates who, when all is said and done, will be just that. HISTORY.

To begin, it's just flat out silly to predicate an argument for electability solely on poll numbers.  Polls, as recently demonstrated, are not definitive.  Moreover, polls 10-11 months ahead of an election are even more insignificant.  Finally, the numbers for Obama v. McCain and Hillary Clinton v. McCain are not so unbelievably one sided as to suggest that it would be impossible for either Clinton or Obama to beat McCain should he be the Republican nominee.

Additionally, there's inherent flaw within Edwards' argument.  He contends that based upon the current polls, only he can beat McCain.  This, of course, requires the assumption that the numbers are inflexible, relatively static and thus unlikely to change come November.  That said, if polls are legitimate indicators of support (as the campaign seems to suggest), then why should trends in the Democratic primary be any different?  In other words, Edwards is arguing that you should vote for him, despite his very low poll numbers in the Democratic primary, because some polls show Hillary and Obama losing in a match up against McCain.  Let me be clear, I'm not suggesting that the numbers aren't flexible, I'm just demonstrating how silly the logic of Edwards' argument is when analyzed.

The Edwards campaign also criticizes both Obama and Clinton for attacking each other and suggests that its the battled between Obama and Clinton that is undermining the Democratic Party's chance for victory in '08.  I'm unclear as to why Edwards has the authority to criticize either candidate for negative attacks, when his campaign has levied some pretty scathing attacks when they believed it would suit them, such as Elizabeth Edwards questioning Hillary Clinton's record on women's issues or Edwards suggestion that his rivals are corporate Democrats (just a few the past); and more recently, with Edwards adding to the Obama-Rezko narrative by recounting a private discussion with Hillary on the subject (isn't this a very similar tactic that Joe Trippi attacked Mark Penn for?).  It's worth noting that I'm not necessarily criticizing Edwards for the aforementioned criticisms of his opponents.  What I am criticizing, as I have in the past, is Edwards doing one thing and then later taking the high ground on the same issue.  You simply cannot argue that your opponents attacks on each other are bad for the party, when you participated in tough attacks yourself.  That's really all I'm saying.

Moving on to the core of Edwards' electability, I offer the following considerations...

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