Obama, hope .. and fighting

Pub date January 4, 2008
WriterTim Redmond
SectionPolitics Blog

Everybody loves Barack Obama today. That’s good; he’s generating tremendous hope and energy in the Democratic Party, he’s got young people excited about politics, he’s given Hillary Clinton a wallop … and of course, of course, this country could do way worse than President Barack Obama.

His speech last night in Iowa was inspirational, full of the sort of stirring rhetoric that makes you want to drop everything and go to New Hampshire to knock on doors.

But I’m still a little nervous. Here’s the line, the one we’ve heard over and over again:

“The time has come to move beyond the bitterness and pettiness and anger that’s consumed Washington; to end the political strategy that’s been all about division and instead make it about addition – to build a coalition for change that stretches through Red States and Blue States. … We’re choosing unity over division, and sending a powerful message that change is coming to America.”

But see, I don’t want to come together in grand unity with the religious right. I don’t want to end my bitterness and anger toward Dick Cheney. I have nothing in common with Don Fisher. I think there are some real evil villains in this country, and I want a president who’s willing to say that, and who wants to defeat them and consign them to the dustbin of history.

Can Obama get beyond his desire for consensus and be tough enough to go in and kick ass and take names? Cause that’s what the next president has to do.