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Obama was identified as the most liberal senator of 2007
 

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Note: This page is organized in chronological order.  There's not much here -- Obama didn't spend a hell of a lot of time representing the people of Illinois in the senate.  He started campaigning for president shortly after arriving in Washington.

 

Summary

  In January 2008 the National Journal published its rankings of all U.S. senators -- based on how they had voted on a host of foreign and domestic policy bills -- and rated Barack Obama "the most liberal Senator of 2007."  "Obama’s [foreign policy] liberal score of 92 and conservative score of 7 indicate that he was more liberal in that issue area than 92 percent of the senators and more conservative than 7 percent," the researchers explained.  In the area of domestic policy voting, the study found that "Obama voted the liberal position on 65 of the 66 key votes on which he voted … [and] garnered perfect liberal scores in both the economic and social categories."

The leftist organization Americans for Democratic Action (ADA) similarly rated Obama’s Senate voting record at 97.5 percent.  By contrast, the American Conservative Union (the ADA’s ideological antithesis) gave Obama a rating of 8 percent.

Around July 19, 2007 -- after slightly more than five months had passed since he had declared his presidential candidacy -- Obama clearly became far more focused on campaigning for his White House run, than on performing the legislative duties for which he had been elected to the U.S. Senate.  From that date through May 22, 2008, Obama voted on just 34 percent of all the bills that came before the Senate.  On the other 66 percent, he cast no vote of any kind, either for or against the legislation in question.

 

Project Vote Smart

  Obama's brief US Senate Voting Record (by issue)

 

Only 3 Months!

 

In spring of 2004, Barack Obama began his run for an open seat in the U.S. Senate.

 

George Soros Is First On Board

  In June 2004, George Soros, who gave $18 million to Democratic advocacy groups seeking to defeat President Bush in 2004, says he will support Barack Obama.  Soros threw a big fund-raiser at his New York home for Obama’s Illinois Senate campaign.  Soros and family personally chipped in $60,000.

 

The Speech

 

In August, 2004, Obama delivers his now-famous DNC Convention speech. -- Video

 

Obama Says "Let Me Be Clear" -- Lie To Follow

  Responding to questions about his intent to serve out the six year senate term, Obama says, in this video, (since removed), that he will not run for the presidency in four years.

Notice:  The video has disappeared.  Using WayBackMachine, I found two links -- both played empty videos -- a lot of stuff is being scrubbed from the web.

Here is what he said in the video:

"I think I've been very clear.  Ah-ah-mumble-mumble, there's a presidential election in four years.  I'm not running for president in four years."

Here is a backup story -- during a meeting with reporters at his Illinois campaign headquarters after his election to the U.S. Senate, he ridiculed as "a silly question" whether he would run for president or vice president before his term ends in 2011.  "I’ve never worked in Washington," he said. "I can unequivocally say I will not be running for national office in four years, and my entire focus is making sure that I’m the best possible senator on behalf of the people of Illinois."

 

Obama Wins!

 

In November, 2004, Obama is elected to the United States Senate.

 

Let Me Be Clear -- And, Sure Enough, Another Whopper!

  Obama’s own farewell to his colleagues in Springfield, on November 8, 2004, was less eloquent than his DNC speech, but no less heartfelt.  Afterward, he faced the Springfield press corps for the last time.  Someone asked why he had already ruled out running on a national ticket with Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2008.  His answer was crisp and immediate.  "You know," Obama replied, "I am a believer in knowing what you’re doing when you apply for a job.  And I think that if I were to seriously consider running on a national ticket I would essentially have to start now, before having served a day in the Senate.  Now, there are some people who might be comfortable doing that, but I’m not one of those people."

But he is one of those people.  He is.  And wherever he is going, he has been one of them for a long, long time.

 

Sworn Into The Senate

  In January, 2005, Obama is sworn into office as the junior United States Senator for Illinois (D).

 

Bobby's Desk

  Obama's desk in the Senate is the same one used by Bobby Kennedy, the former attorney general, New York senator and 1968 Democratic presidential candidate who was assassinated in Los Angeles.

 

The Beatification

  Shortly after Obama's swearing in, his beatification begins when Time magazine names Obama one of "The World's Most Influential People."  He is listed among other leaders and revolutionaries.  This same year, the British journal New Statesman names Obama one of "10 People Who Could Change the World."

 

Obama Begins To Cash In

  Less than two months after ascending to the U.S. Senate, Barack Obama bought more than $50,000 worth of stock in two speculative companies whose major investors included some of his biggest political donors.

One of the companies was a biotech concern that was starting to develop a drug to treat avian flu.  In March 2005, two weeks after buying about $5,000 of its shares, Obama took the lead in a legislative push for more federal spending to battle the disease.

He also bought more than $50,000 in stock in a satellite communications business whose principal backers include four friends and donors who had raised more than $150,000 for his political committees.
 

A spokesman for Obama says the senator did not know that he had invested in either company.

 

Obama's Senate Agenda

  Obama supports homosexual marriage, racial preferences, banning all guns, flag-burning, socialized medicine and the absolute right to abortion, including partial-birth abortions.  He voted against requiring medical care for aborted fetuses who survive.

Obama is anti-war, voted against the reauthorization of the USA Patriot Act, against privatizing Social Security and opposes the death penalty, three strikes laws and school vouchers.  He has no military service record.  He strongly supports the decriminalization of marijuana.

Obama opposed the Defense of Marriage Act; would work to repeal it in the U.S. Senate; would not vote for any legislation that would restrict the ability of gays and lesbians to marry.

 

Obama Is A Hard, Hard Lefty

 

Project Votesmart reports that Obama supports the interests of Planned Parenthood 100%.

Obama supports the interests of NARAL Pro-Choice America 100%.

Obama supports the interests of the National Right to Life Committee 0%.

Obama supports the interests of the United Electrical Radio and Machine Workers, International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, and the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees 100%.

Obama supports the interests of the AFL-CIO 92%.

 

Project Votesmart reports that Obama supports the interests of Planned Parenthood 100%.

Obama supports the interests of NARAL Pro-Choice America 100%.

Obama supports the interests of the National Right to Life Committee 0%.

Obama supports the interests of the American Immigration Lawyers Association 88%.

 

Perks

 

Obama accepts rides on corporate jets, some to attend his own  fundraisers.

 

Demcratic Humor

 

Obama becomes the Senate's point man on ethics and says he will no longer accept rides on corporate jets.

 

Birds Of A Feather

  Here is a video of Obama enthusiastically campaigning for openly socialist Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont.  Sanders, who won his seat in 2006, called Obama "one of the great leaders of the United States Senate," even though Obama had only been in the body for less than two years.

 

The Audacity Of Audacity

  In the first 18 months of his first Senate term Obama was also writing his second book, "The Audacity of Hope."  Immediately after finishing that, he built up support for his upcoming Presidential campaign by campaigning for other Democrats in 2006, took part in a book tour, made a few appearances on entertainment shows, and began his campaign for the presidency.  Not much time for doing what he was elected to the Senate to do -- represent the people of Illinois.

As for the originality of "The Audacity of Hope," a New York Times article contains a few surprises there as well.  The individuals that Obama sent first drafts to for comments comprise a Who's Who of liberal Democratic Party insiders, some of whom are now associated with his campaign: David Axelrod, Anthony Lake, Gene Sperling, Samantha Power, and Cass Sunstien.

Sunstein, in particular, notes that he made many comments on the manuscript -- a few of which made it into Obama's book.  This differs from the official spin about the book, which is that it is a liberal manifesto penned solely by Barack Obama. 

One wonders if eventually we will find out more about these collaborations of Obama's -- for an example see Ted Sorenson's recent admission (May '08) of what he had previously denied for 40-plus years verbally and in writing -- that he ghost wrote the book that John Kennedy used to win a Pulitzer, "Profiles in Courage."

 

Obama Declares

  Obama said, on Tuesday, January 16th, that he is taking a first step toward running for president next year by "filing papers today to create a presidential exploratory committee."

 

Obama Announces

  Obama february 10, 2007, formally announces he is a candidate for the Office of the President of the United States of America on February 10th, thirty-six years after writing the essay, "I want to be President," as a child.

 

Absentee Senator

  The Illinois Democrat has missed nearly 80 percent of all votes since September, 2007.  Obama has missed the most votes of any Democratic presidential hopeful in the Senate over the last two months, including a vote on an Iran resolution he has blasted Sen. Hillary Clinton for supporting.

Obama routinely avoids voting on any issue that is not helpful to Muslim goals.  For example, Obama missed a vote on a resolution that declared the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, an elite part of the Iranian military, a terrorist organization.

 

Most Liberal

  In a January 31, 2008, National Journal article, Obama was identified as the most liberal senator in 2007.  According to the Journal's 27th annual vote ratings, the insurgent presidential candidate shifted further to the left last year in the run-up to the primaries, after ranking as the 16th- and 10th-most-liberal during his first two years in the Senate.

 

Early Muslim Money

  In February, 2008, The Times (UK) discovered Illinois state documents indicating that Fintrade Services, a Panamanian company controlled by Nadhmi Auchi, an Iraqi-born British billionaire, lent money to an Obama fundraiser in May 2005.

The undeclared $3.5 million (£1.8 million) payment from the corrupt businessman has landed Tony Rezko, Barack Obama’s former fundraiser behind bars.

The payment, disclosed in court papers, is the first time that Mr. Obama’s long-serving bagman Antoin "Tony" Rezko, a Syrian immigrant to the United States, has been linked to Nadhmi Auchi, who is one of Britain’s richest men.  The relationship is a potential embarrassment for Obama, who has made his opposition to the Iraq war a central plank of his campaign.

 

Deriliction Of Duty

  Obama's "commitment" to Afghanistan: He believes the US "took its eye off the ball" when we went into Iraq, and promises to refocus on Afghanistan as president.

The reality is that since Obama began chairing the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Subcommittee on European Affairs in January 2007, not a single policy hearing has been conducted on anything, Afghanistan or otherwise. 

When Hillary Clinton brought this up at the Cleveland debate, Obama conceded, "I became chairman of this committee at the beginning of this campaign. …So it is true that we haven’t had oversight hearings on Afghanistan."  ‘Nuff said.

Obama is chair of The Subcommittee On European Affairs, which has Jurisdiction over the countries of Europe, as well as NATO activities.  "Jurisdiction: The subcommittee deals with all matters concerning U.S. relations with the countries on the continent of Europe ... and with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe."

He hasn't convened a single meeting.

Obama has never held a single policy hearing on anything, not Afghanistan, or anywhere else.

 

A Snake Oil Salesman

  U.S. Rep. Geoff Davis, a Hebron Republican, compared Obama and his message for change similar to a "snake oil salesman" [at a Northern Kentucky Lincoln Day dinner].

He said in his remarks at the GOP dinner that he also recently participated in a "highly classified, national security simulation" with Obama.

"I'm going to tell you something: That boy's finger does not need to be on the button," Davis said.  "He could not make a decision in that simulation that related to a nuclear threat to this country."

 

Two Legislative Accomplishments

  While Obama has been campaigning, his duties in the Senate have taken a hit. 

 

"The Democratic Republic of the Congo Relief, Security, and Diplomacy Promotion Act of 2006," is one of his two legislative accomplishments since joining the Senate.

In the more than three years that Obama has been in the Senate, his first bill sends American taxpayer's money to Africa, under the guise of promoting democracy in the Democratic Republic of Congo -- good luck with that.

His second great accomplishment -- he sponsored a bill to name a post office.

 

Partisanship -- Ha!

  Obama's call for postpartisanship looks unconvincing, when he is unable to point to a single important instance in his Senate career when he demonstrated bipartisanship.  And his repeated calls to remember Dr. Martin Luther King's "fierce urgency of now" in tackling big issues falls flat as voters discover that he has not provided leadership on any major legislative battle.

Mr. Obama has not been a leader on big causes in Congress.  He has been manifestly unwilling to expend his political capital on urgent issues.  He has been only an observer, watching the action from a distance, thinking wry and sardonic and cynical thoughts to himself about his colleagues, mildly amused at their too-ing and fro-ing.  He has held his energy and talent in reserve for the more important task of advancing his own political career, which means running for president.

 

143 Days

  FReeper B-Cause suggests this question, "Just how much Senate experience does Barack Obama have in terms of actual work days?"

The answer --  Not much!

From the time Barack Obama was sworn in as a United State Senator, to the time he announced that he was forming a Presidential exploratory committee, he logged 143 days of experience in the Senate.  That's how many days the Senate was actually in session and working.

After 143 days of work experience, Obama believed he was ready to be Commander In Chief, Leader of the Free World, and fill the shoes of Abraham Lincoln, FDR, JFK and Ronald Reagan.

143 days -- I keep leftovers in my refrigerator longer than that.

In contrast, John McCain's 26 years in Congress, 22 years of military service including 1,966 days in captivity as a POW in Hanoi now seem more impressive than ever.  At 71, John McCain may just be hitting his stride.

 

The Irony Of Pork

  Obama is no stranger to pork barrel spending, having clocked in with $740 million in earmarks in just three years.  He made sure that his wife’s employer ($1M) and the organization run by hate monger Father Michael Pfleger ($225,000) were on the list.  And the monstrous $300 billion farm bill (filled with subsidies for millionaire and corporate farms) and the 2005 highway bill with the infamous Bridge to Nowhere?  He voted for them both.

 

Facts Are Optional

  John Hinderacker comments on Obama's new television ad, in which he claims credit for three pieces of legislation.

In one case, the claim is reasonable. The other two are bogus.


Obama says that "I... cut taxes for working families," citing Illinois Public Act: PA 91-0700, the Illinois Earned Income Tax Credit of 2000.  Given the collaborative nature of any legislation, Obama's claim that "I cut taxes" is pretentious at best.  As it happens, though, Obama was only a minor player with respect to the Earned Income Tax Credit Act.  In fact, he was not one of the bill's chief sponsors.  He signed on as one of 37 co-sponsors on April 15, 2000, shortly before the act was signed into law on May 11.

In the ad, Obama also claims that "I…extended health care for wounded troops who had been neglected."  Wow, that's quite an accomplishment for a single Senator.  The ad cites Public Law 110-181, the 2008 National Defense Authorization Act.  Funny thing, though: Obama didn't show up to vote on that bill in the Senate.  He was busy telling lies on the campaign trail.   So it's hard to see how Obama can take credit for having personally "extended health care for wounded troops."

But that's ObamaWorld -- the facts are optional.

 

No Money For Americans

  In July, 2008, Obama gets his third bill passed -- even though he was too busy campaigning to vote for it.

The Global AIDS Spending Bill (S. 2731) adds $50 billion to the $200 billion already spent by U.S. taxpayers on HIV/AIDS here and around the world that has not resulted in any cures or vaccines.

The bill also lifts the ban on entry into the U.S. of AIDS-infected aliens, who could end up adding to the costs of our health care system. The Congressional Budget Office estimated that providing federal disability, health and nutrition benefits to aliens with HIV/AIDS and their children could cost the government $83 million over a 10-year period.

Add this $50 billion to the billions in the Obama-sponsored "Democratic Republic of the Congo Relief, Security, and Diplomacy Promotion Act of 2006."  None of it spent on Americans.  He's sending our money to Africa.  Imagine the transfer of funds out of America once he sits in the Oval Office.

His other great accomplishment -- he sponsored a bill to name a post office.

 

Executive Experience

  John Hinderaker says that it would be interesting to know when Obama last set foot in the Senate.  Since he has been running for President for pretty much his entire, brief time in Washington, one can ask whether he was ever really a Senator at all.

Then there is this pathetic effort to defend his own lack of executive experience:

"Well, my understanding is that Governor Palin’s town of Wasilla has, I think, 50 employees.  We’ve got 2,500 in this campaign.  I think their budget is maybe $12 million a year.  You know, we have a budget of about three times that just for the month.  So I think that our ability to manage large systems and to execute I think has been made clear over the last couple of years."

Apparently Obama hadn't heard about Palin being Governor of the State of Alaska, which has a budget in excess of $11 billion annually and more than 24,000 employees.  Also, on Obama's theory, the act of running for President gives you the experience you need to qualify to be President.  That's convenient for a guy who has accomplished so little in his career in public life.

If our intrepid reporters could focus on something other than Bristol Palin for a moment, maybe they would notice that Obama continues to make a fool of himself on a near-daily basis.

I wonder why Obama left out this "executive experience" -- the Chicago Annenberg Challenge?

 

Hypocrisy

  John Hinderaker at PowerLine blog is surprised that Obama has decided to take on John McCain on the subject of earmarks.  This is somewhat like Al Capone taking on Eliot Ness on the subject of bootlegging.  The McCain campaign released this response:


While Senator McCain has never requested a single earmark, Senator Obama has requested nearly a billion dollars worth during his short time in office.  Though Senator Biden has been in the Senate for 36 years, he has only disclosed his earmarks for one year.

Senator Obama increased his earmark requests during each of his first three years in office.  Governor Palin has cut requests for earmarks for Alaska by $150 million since entering office, and she has cut those requests every single year. She has also vetoed a half billion dollars in wasteful spending at the state level.


One might ask, what makes Obama think he can get away with this nonsense, when the facts are the precise opposite of his claims?  But you know the answer to that question.

  November 4th, 2008
  A day that shall live in infamy.  The ineligible candidate, Obama is elected to the Oval Office.

 

Obama Resigns From Senate

  Obama resigned his seat in the Senate on Sunday to focus on his transition to the White House, appointing new staff and thanking his home state of Illinois for launching his political career.

"Today, I am ending one journey to begin another," Obama said in a letter to the people of Illinois, describing his job representing them as one of the highest honors of his life.

"I am stepping down as senator to prepare for the responsibilities I will assume as our nation's next president," he said.  "But I will never forget, and will forever be grateful to, the men and women of this great state who made my life in public service possible."

Obama's resignation as senator means he will not participate in this week's post-election session on Capitol Hill that could address the ailing economy and struggling auto industry.

I suppose it would be too much to hope that one of the lawsuits sticks.  That would be the end of Obama forever.

 

Whadda bunch!

12/9/08

Federal authorities arrested Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich Tuesday on charges that he brazenly conspired to sell or trade the Senate seat left vacant by President-elect Barack Obama to the highest bidder.
 
Blagojevich also was charged with illegally threatening to withhold state assistance to Tribune Co., the owner of the Chicago Tribune, in the sale of Wrigley Field, according to a federal criminal complaint.  In return for state assistance, Blagojevich allegedly wanted members of the paper's editorial board who had been critical of him fired.

A 76-page FBI affidavit said the 51-year-old Democratic governor was intercepted on court-authorized wiretaps over the last month conspiring to sell or trade the vacant Senate seat for personal benefits for himself and his wife, Patti.

The tapes reveal a two-term governor who no longer wants his job, badly wants cash and is determined to leverage a financial benefit out of his appointment powers.

He also appears to think little of the president-elect, whom he calls a "motherf***er" at one point.

"F**k him," Blagjoveich says of Obama during a lengthy call with top aides and his wife recorded on November 10th, "For nothing?  F**k him."

The Blagojevich arrest is a problem for Barack Obama for two reasons. First, Blagojevich’s bagman Tony Rezko was Obama’s political sponsor.

Second, Blagojevich’s intercepted comments speak volumes about the way political business is conducted in Illinois.  Blagojevich certainly expected Obama to be a willing participant in the dealings over Obama’s Senate seat.  Of course, Obama is pleading ignorance, but he is either part of the political culture that produced Blagojevich or he is not.  I doubt Rezko had one set of ethical standards when Obama was in the room, and another when he was with Blagojevich.

In another section of the complaint, Blagojevich expresses exasperation that Obama and his team aren't willing to offer him an inducement in exchange for appointing an aide, apparently Valerie Jarrett, to the Senate.

Obama wanted his long-time associate, Valerie Jarrett, appointed to his vacant senate seat.  Jarrett, in 1991, put Obama's then wife-to-be squarely in the offices of the man whose father had perfected the Democratic machine, Mayor Daly.  After leaving City Hall, Jarrett went on to lead the Chicago Transit Authority.  She recruited Michelle Obama to the transit agency's citizen advisory committee.

One piece of speculation: Jarrett's abrupt withdrawal from consideration for the Senate seat suggests Obama's circle aware of the investigation.

It is clear from the complaint that Obama refused to offer Blagojevich anything for appointing Jarrett:

Rod Blagojevich said he knows that the President-elect wants Senate Candidate 1 (Jarrett) for the Senate seat but, "they’re not willing to give me anything except appreciation.  F*** them,'" says the complaint. 

So, Obama wanted Jarrett. 
Blagojevich wanted money.

Is this investigation Obama's way to pay back Blagojevich?  He does have a history of throwing people under his political bus.

Obama and Blagojevich should both be in jail for this, but watch for Blagjoveich to spill the beans on the Obama/Rezko deals.  This is just the beginning.

I probably read two-dozen articles related to this story.  Nowhere did I see the word "Democrat."

   

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