Victor Davis Hanson over at NRO’s The Corner:
Most Americans simply cannot imagine their president as the topic of a two-hour encomium by Farrakhan, or why an unrepentant terrorist like Ayers would have once been associated with him. Those are legitimate issues, and the Obama campaign needs to come up with a comprehensive defense against them before they arise: e.g., “All sorts of diverse people are attracted to various causes under the umbrella of social change; what distinguishes Obama is his singular devotion to working within the system and avoiding the extremism that plagues the movement.”
Until there is some systematic preemptive exegesis, I think more and more of these disturbing hard-Left embarrassments will turn up — none of them alone a problem; all of them in sum finally devastating.
Our leftwingers have convinced themselves that America has turned decisively leftwards and will embrace a leftwing President. If this is true, then so be it – but I don’t think it is. What this means for Obama is that he’s going to be running in a center/right America as a liberal/left politician. As long as Obama can keep it to high sounding rhetoric, all is well – but just as soon as Obama is forced down into the nitty gritty of politics, his liberalism will prove an obstacle to winning.
Americans are tired of Iraq – but do Americans want to lose in Iraq?
Americans are tired of the mess in health care – but do Americans want socialised medicine?
Americans are tired of endless government debt – but do Americans want tax increases, or would they prefer spending cuts?
These are the sorts of questions we are going to answer between now and November and while Obama can, perhaps, answer them in a way which leads to his being sworn in on January 20th, 2009, the plain fact of the matter is that it won’t be easy – especially not easy against a seasoned campaigner like John McCain, who is popular, highly respected and has a vastly more substantial resume’ than Obama.