That was blown out of the water long before Jeremiah Wright's sermons were blasted in every media outlet, blog, newspaper and forum, when Bill Clinton and other Clinton surrogates managed to "imply" at every given moment that Obama's race would be a factor.
Surprise announcement to everyone.... Obama is Black.
Now, by attempting to "explain" the black point of view that his pastor holds dear, Barack Obama has done the one thing he claimed he didn't want to do.
He made his ongoing battle with Clinton about the color of his skin, with his speech where he disavowed some of the comments that Jeremiah Wright made, yet did not and refused to disavow the man.
That is costing him and will continue to cost him, especially if he does become the nominee of choice for the Democratic party.
Wwilliam Kristol in the New York Times has written a piece titled, "Let’s Not, and Say We Did", and he is referring to a sentence within Obama's speech where he said, "But race is an issue that I believe this nation cannot afford to ignore right now.”
As soon as I heard that, I knew what we’d have to endure. I knew that there would be a stampede of editorial boards, columnists and academics rushing not to ignore race. A national conversation about race! At long last!
Of course, memories are short. In 1997 President Bill Clinton announced, with great fanfare, that he intended “to lead the American people in a great and unprecedented [if he did say so himself] conversation about race.” That conversation quickly went nowhere. And just as well.
The last thing we need now is a heated national conversation about race.
He is right, pure and simple, the last thing America needs is an election that is all about race instead of issues.
Yet, according to some, that is what is happening, thanks to Obama and his pastor.
In rejecting the racist views of his longtime spiritual mentor but not disowning him, Obama has unwittingly enhanced his image as the African American candidate -- as opposed to being just a remarkable candidate who happens to be black. That poses a dilemma for unelected superdelegates, who as professional politicians will settle the contest because neither Obama nor Clinton can win enough elected delegates to be nominated.
Superdelegates, though they were inclined toward Clinton as recently as three months ago, now flinch at the idea of rejecting Obama. They fear antagonizing African Americans, who have become the hard-core Democratic base. But what if national polls continue their post-Wright trend and show Obama trailing both Clinton and Republican John McCain in popular support? The Obama strategists' hope of reversing that trend depends on whether his eloquent race speech, which he continued to reprise on the campaign trail all week, can overcome videos exposing his pastor's demagoguery.
That means Clinton must convince superdelegates that Obama is not electable -- validating this judgment by a neutral Democratic leader: "It was a great speech, but it cannot overcome the powerful [Wright] video." Since Obama's race declaration, he has fallen behind McCain nationally in various polls and trails by as much as eight percentage points in Rasmussen tracking.
In here lies a major problem for the US in a close race between the Democratic candidates, issues and policy have gone to the wayside and are rarely spoken about and has been replaced with the color of Obama's skin.
Kansas City.com has some letters from their readers and again, it is dominated with talk of Wright, Obama and how Obama responded to his pastors hatred filled sermons and yet continued to be a member of that church for almost two decades.
In one letter from Joyce Howard, we see:
I’m not sure what offends me most: a preacher standing in the pulpit, bashing white people and cursing America, or now listening to Sen. Barack Obama and others in the black community making excuses for it.
If Obama attended Wright’s church and listened to garbage like that, he’s no better than the one who delivered it, and this would show him to be a complete contradiction of whom he presents himself to be.
This is the national dialog now. Not who is better for this country. Not where the politicians stand on policies and issues.
It is about Obama, his pastor and the color of his skin.
Barack Obama is a black man. Everyone clear on that?
Barack Obama being a black man, is not a policy, not an issue and not a reason to vote for him or not vote for him.