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Monday, August 27, 2007

Can The Kenyan With An American Mother End Up In The White House?

Other African countries really envy Kenyans. You see in African customs the father determines the nationality of a person and many Africans see Democratic American presidential hopeful Barrack Obama as a Kenyan.

Ironical really when most blacks in American see him as more of a white candidate than one who can address the issues of the African Americans.

Anyhow I was a little sick of reading so many self-righteous uninformed opinions of Obama's chances in Kenyan blogs declaring early that he stands absolutely no chance,
that I decided to ask a native American friend who has been following elections in
America for close to a half a century now. Her reply astounded me and gave me a rare
glimpse into the political situation in the United States in relation to the next president.

I asked a straight question; does Obama have a fighting chance to win the democratic nomination and the election after that?


Her answer;

Unfortunately, I can't call this one. I personally don't like Hillary, and hope that Obama has a chance. And I'm not the only one who sees Hillary as being an
ambitious opportunist in search of power, rather than someone with deeply-held
ideals of her own.

But she is a real pro and works hard at her job even if she's oddly unlikable, while Obama is still new enough so he sometimes puts his foot in his mouth. (Which I
personally find oddly refreshing, particularly when contrasted to Hillary's skill at emphasizing what's going to sell her to a particular audience).

I fear that in the end Obama's lack of experience in international arenas may make
his candidacy judged to be premature by many, no matter how exciting his positive qualities. (Although I'd be happy to vote for him myself just as he is today, and
would HATE supporting Hillary. I bet he'd be a fast learner.)

Meanwhile, there are no obviously satisfactory candidates on the Republican side at the moment, and I think if Obama does manage to get the nomination he might win. I can actually see more chance of an unexpected post-primary groundswell of support for a young and interesting candidate with vision than for a pro who knows how to play her cards.

Those of us who dislike Hillary are most unlikely to be swept up in any wave of enthusiasm for her.

But actually, it's a horse race. Anything could happen between now and the primaries to tip the balance one way or the other. If the Republicans miraculously find a candidate that appeals to enough people, such a candidate might prevail against EITHER Hillary or Obama.

All that is truly clear is that most Americans are by this time quite glad Bush can't run again!


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