Tag Archives: Obama

Battleground fatigue: A letter from Columbus

By James Oliphant
Tribune correspondent

October 28, 2008

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Here’s one random sampling from a battleground state, with some margin for error.

“I just want it to end,” my father says. “Make it stop.”

The phone has just rung, and he knows the number. Knows not to answer. “It’s just them,” he mutters.

“Them,” by the way, is a non-partisan designation. When it comes to wanting to be left alone, my father is politically agnostic. It really isn’t his fault. He’s lived here going on 40 years and has watched, helplessly, as his once-sleepy town sprouted up around him, went major-league and now is suffering the consequences of being the most divided large city in one of the most divided states in the union.

Throw in advances in technology and the transformational effect of hundreds of millions in cash, and there is literally nowhere to hide. John McCain, Barack Obama and their surrogates can’t be ducked or dodged. They’re on television, on the phone, pounding on doors, sending mail. When it’s one-and-one, they call that felony stalking. Writ large, it’s the modern political campaign in a make-or-break state.

There’s no relief. Michelle Obama was here Friday. McCain Sunday. It’s like the old joke about the weather here. Don’t like it? Wait. Continue reading

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Biden: No brain scans for aneurysms

joe-biden.jpg

The Chicago Tribune reports that among recent medical records released by Sen. Joe Biden, the Democratic vice presidential nominee, there are no scans that might indicate the potential for another dehabilitating aneurysm such as the ones he suffered 20 years ago. Biden, 65, had multiple brain surgeries following the attacks.

Here’s the report:

Newly released medical records from vice presidential candidate Joe Biden do not include the results of any recent brain scans, which some experts consider necessary to assess whether the senator is at risk for a repeat of the brain aneurysms that nearly killed him 20 years ago. Biden’s most recent physical exam in July showed him to be in good health, according to a letter from Dr. John Eisold that the campaign released Monday. The letter from Eisold, who is the attending physician for Congress, described Biden’s cardiac capacity as excellent.

But the 49 pages of records the campaign released gave no indication that Biden’s doctors sought follow-up tests after the serious aneurysms he suffered in 1988. Medical experts are divided over the need for such precautionary brain scans, but many feel it is the only way to be sure a patient is out of danger.

“If this was my patient, I would re-image every three to five years to make sure no new aneurysm had cropped up,” said Dr. Mark Alberts, a professor of neurology at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine.

The health of the candidates on both sides has become a small but growing issue in the last days of the presidential campaign. A comprehensive look on the subject by the New York Times’ Lawrence K. Altman stated that all four candidates on both tickets could be more forthcoming about their physical condition.

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Terre Haute: More images from the trail

 

Is this a shot at the media?

Is this a shot at the media?

 

Obama speaks on the Fannie Mae bailout.

Obama speaks on the Fannie Mae bailout.

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Obama: Images from the trail

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Images from the trail

 

Obama adviser David Axelrod briefs reporters on the campaign plane

Obama adviser David Axelrod briefs reporters on the campaign plane

 

 

Obama campaigns at a hydroelectric turbine plant in Pennsylvania.

Obama campaigns at a hydroelectric turbine plant in Pennsylvania.

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Obama: ‘Who are they fighting for?’

 

 

Barack Obama addresses reporters at a hydroelectric turbine plant in York, Pa. 

YORK, Pa.–Barack Obama said Thursday he wasn’t surprised by the ferocity of Republican attacks this week during the party’s convention in St. Paul.

“This is what they do,” Obama told reporters after a campaign event at a plant in York. “They don’t have an agenda to run on. They haven’t offered a single concrete idea so far in two nights about how they would make the lives of middle class Americans better”

Obama echoed a theme that his campaign has established all day in response to jabs from former New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani and GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin that questioned his experience and mocked his work as a community organizer as a young man in Chicago.

Obama called the attack on community service “curious.”

“i would argue that doing work in the community to try and create jobs, to bring people together, to rejuvenate communities that have fallen on hard times, to set up job-training programs in areas that have been hard hit when the steel plants closed, that that’s relevant only in understanding where I’m coming from, who I believe in, who I’m fighting for and why I’m in this race.

“And the question I have for them is? Why would that kind of work be ridiculous? Who are they fighting for? Who are they advocating for?

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Obama: McCain wants ‘campaign to be about biography’

 

Obama speaks to a crowd on a farm in Dillionvale, Ohio

Obama speaks to a crowd on a farm in Dillionvale, Ohio

 

 

 

Obama at an economic forum in New Philadelphia, Ohio.

Obama at an economic forum in New Philadelphia, Ohio.

 

Writ Large is on the road this week, embedded with the Barack Obama campaign. 

DILLONVALE, Ohio—The politician who became famous in part because of his life story said Wednesday that the presidential race isn’t about biographies or personalities.

“I don’t know what John McCain is thinking,” Sen. Barack Obama told a crowd at an eastern Ohio college, “but I am going to be talking a whole lot about issues.”

Obama’s comments came as a response to remarks made the day before by John McCain’s campaign manager, Rick Davis.

Davis told the editorial board of the Washington Post that “this election is not about issues,” said Davis. “This election is about a composite view of what people take away from these candidates.”

Seeing the opening, Obama pounced, saying the Republicans were trying to steer the campaign away from issues such as the stagnant economy, because that’s where they hold a disadvantage. And it gave him a ready-set opportunity to promote his economic agenda.

Obama, of course, has long trafficked in his own compelling biography, even writing a book about his life as the son of a Kenyan father who was raised by his Kansas-born single mother. And even as he derided the McCain campaign, he couldn’t help but strike some well-worn personal chords himself, taking about the financial struggles of his mother and grandmother.
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