Raimondo on Obama
This question arises as Raimondo writes a column praising Obama's early opposition to the Iraq war. Raimondo links to Obama's 2002 speech at an anti-war rally as proof of his prescience and judgment. I had not read the speech previously, but it is quite good. Here he is bashing Perle and Wolfie:
I don’t oppose all wars. And I know that in this crowd today, there is no shortage of patriots, or of patriotism. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other arm-chair, weekend warriors in this Administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.
What I am opposed to is the attempt by political hacks like Karl Rove to distract us from a rise in the uninsured, a rise in the poverty rate, a drop in the median income – to distract us from corporate scandals and a stock market that has just gone through the worst month since the Great Depression.
Obama also accurately pointed out that while Saddam was a bad guy, he posed no threat to our interests:
But I also know that Saddam poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States, or to his neighbors, that the Iraqi economy is in shambles, that the Iraqi military a fraction of its former strength, and that in concert with the international community he can be contained until, in the way of all petty dictators, he falls away into the dustbin of history.
Raimondo also speculates that Obama will shortly become the latest victim of a smearbund organized by Israel-Firsters. Such a frontal attack would split the Democratic constituency. Both Black voters and educated progressives would likely recoil from the sort of strategy Raimondo envisions.
So can anti-war conservatives vote for Obama?