Monday, February 12, 2007

Yesterday I saw the future.

And I wasn't dropping acid. Honestly.

Through a co-worker I snared some tickets to go watch Barack Obama be welcomed home from his whirlwind Springfield-to-Iowa tour. It was held at the UIC Pavillion in Chicago, and a crowd of thousands waited expectantly for hours while Barack arrived late.

The man is good, but one of the things that I noticed that impressed me was the way he handled a group of demonstrators who proceded a chant calling on him to cut off funding to the war. Without mocking or telling them to shut up, he gracefully let them know he was getting to the war (but first he had to finish his plea on healthcare). When they didn't stop, he just waited and halted his speech like I've seen teachers do when their students won't shut up. When the crowd started yelling "O-BA-MA!" the protestors got the point and allowed him to finish. He said "I'm glad those guys are up there, because this is an urgent issue that needs to be resolved."

He's a pretty classy guy, best as I can tell.

I've long stated my torrid political yearnings for John Edwards (and my heart still burns when I hear him talk about unions--it's not a punchline for him, it's a real feeling). He's a great candidate. But so is Barack Obama. In fact, for the first time in my memory, there are actually several candidates whom I wouldn't mind seeing elected. The only one I have strong feelings against is Hillary, for lots of reasons I don't have time to go into right now.

On the other hand, none of the Republican candidates scares me all that much. The air is running out of the McCain Balloon, Mitt Romney will not win over the Republican base, and neither will Rudolph Giuliani. Mike Huckabee and Sam Brownback are also-rans.

It will actually be a good time to be a liberal running for office.

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