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Doug Wilder: Barack Obama could shatter the GOP's virtual lock on the South

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ariesgem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 05:04 PM
Original message
Doug Wilder: Barack Obama could shatter the GOP's virtual lock on the South
Edited on Tue Aug-28-07 05:04 PM by ariesgem
RICHMOND, Va. L. Douglas Wilder of Virginia, who made history as the nation's first elected black governor, is preparing to campaign aggressively for Barack Obama, and predicted in an interview that the charismatic young candidate could shatter the Republican Party's virtual lock on the South.

"He's not race-less," Wilder said of Obama, "but the skin color is of no moment. I don't think he would be an easy target for the Republicans."

The unstinting embrace by Wilder, now the mayor of Richmond, could be important in Virginia and other southern states, where his reputation still looms large and the African-American vote could prove decisive in the Democratic nominating contest.

In a 90-minute interview, Wilder also denounced African-American activists who question whether Obama is "black enough" in his style or agenda, a criticism Wilder said comes simply because Obama does not share their interest in "the pimping of race."

He was also notably cool toward Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton. He said that Clinton's explanations of her 2002 vote authorizing the Iraq war make no sense and that her polarizing personality makes her less electable than Obama in Virginia and similar moderate states.


.............................


Wilder recalled that in his statewide races, some "were accusing me of not spending enough time in the black community, not recognizing that 85 percent of the vote was not in that community.

"Where was that criticism coming from?" he asked. "Some of the African-American community. They ultimately were supportive. But they were questioning the strategy."

Wilder flashed annoyance when he recalled conversations with people who say Obama "is a nice man he's got a lot to learn."

"That's a put-down," Wilder said firmly. "What has he got to learn?"

Part of Wilder's sense of fraternity with Obama comes from the success the latter is achieving independent of the African-American establishment, with its high-profile representatives who are self-appointed but receive great deference.

"Certain black leaders would believe that you have to go through their prism: 'If I lay my hand on you, you're OK,' " Wilder said with a chuckle. "So many people have made a living off of the pimping of race. I told him when he runs, one of his big problems he would have is with the African-American leadership, as such. He didn't question it. He said, 'I think I know what you mean.' "


............................

On Clinton:

He also made plain he finds her record on Iraq lame, and said he expects many Democrats will feel likewise.

"Let's not kid ourselves: The Iraq war is going to be a part of this election," he added. "It's not going to go away. . I would press her a little more. I would say to her, 'You don't sound like John Kerry. But you're saying you didn't vote for what George Bush did, but you voted to give him the authority. That's parsing it.' I would press the issue of: Do you regret it? She's never been straightforward about that."

Clinton's explanation that she and others thought Iraq had weapons of mass destruction does not cut it, he said. "I have a lot of problems with that vote. Forget the weapons of mass destruction let's put those on the side. But was Iraq at all involved with 9/11? No! No evidence of it, no place...Why attack Iraq now, when the enemy that attacked us needs to be ferreted out, found, sought, punished?"


http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0807/5518.html
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AtomicKitten Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 05:06 PM
Response to Original message
1. I believe that is a distinct possibility.
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BringBigDogBack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-29-07 04:56 AM
Response to Reply #1
12. agree
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draft_mario_cuomo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 05:11 PM
Response to Original message
2. Big endorsement for Obama
Edited on Tue Aug-28-07 05:13 PM by draft_mario_cuomo
As to whether Obama can win in the South, when he pulls ahead in the key purple states Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania (the name ID excuse doesn't cut it. Obama has the same name ID Edwards has...) we can begin talking about him winning Louisiana and Tennessee. ;)
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w4rma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 05:15 PM
Response to Original message
3. Virginia had a Democratic majority until Wilder's governorship. (nt)
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illinoisprogressive Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 05:19 PM
Response to Original message
4. I just love that Vibe cover. One of Obama's best.
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FARAFIELD Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 06:02 PM
Response to Original message
5. sorry to say
I grew up in California but have lived in the south for 9 years and im telling you there isnt anyway obama could win any Southern State, the closest might be FLorida which would have no Senator/Governer on the ballot he might stand a chance. All due respect to Wilder who won in Virginia, but that racist MaCaCawitz STILL almost beat Webb. We can make inroads and should try, but it cant be done. Hillary could win Arkansas and Bill could help her win FLorida, and Edwards has a good chance if hes nominated to win VA, NC, Tennesee and Florida. But there are a lot of people that simply wont vote for a non white (remember LA Governer a few years back).
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Colobo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 06:41 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. Obama can and will do it.
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alteredstate Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-29-07 06:21 AM
Response to Reply #5
17. I live in SC
and I think you're wrong.
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Grandrose Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 06:38 PM
Response to Original message
6. K&R
Great perspective! :thumbsup: :kick:
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surfermaw Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 08:23 PM
Response to Original message
8. A Black man can't break the republicans in the southern states
There are more bigots there in the red states than any place in the United States..heck all those democrats that changed parties with Strom Thurmon..are Bigots of the largest kind believe me there were plenty changing parties back then
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Ethelk2044 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 08:26 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. Yes, there are bigots down there. However, there are most of the people
are not bigots.
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Colobo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 09:36 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. Obama makes many bigots feel comfortable. His blackness doesn't
seem to be a real issue.
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Terri S Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-28-07 09:30 PM
Response to Original message
10. Nice endorsement!
"That's a put-down," Wilder said firmly. "What has he got to learn?" Indeed! You gotta love the 'naive', 'gotta learn' comments. There's a great blog I found written by an anonymous teacher called 'Jay'. Here's a link to one, but do check out some of the rest. Great stuff....

link
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Apollo11 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-29-07 05:06 AM
Response to Original message
13. Edwards also has a lot of support in the south
It was not enough to overcome the south's dislike of Kerry back in 2004.

But a ticket with Edwards at the top could compete across all 50 States.

Still, I would be happy to see Obama on the ticket in 2008, 2012, 2016 & 2020.

Who knows - maybe Edwards-Obama (or Gore-Obama or Clark-Obama)?
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Clark2008 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-29-07 06:08 AM
Response to Reply #13
15. Where in the South?
Not here in the South... most people in the South, honestly, don't remember who he is.
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Apollo11 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-29-07 07:16 AM
Response to Reply #15
18. Most people don't follow politics as closely as we do
My point is that a southerner like John Edwards or Wes Clark will find it easy to campaign in the south.

So it cannot be true that Barack Obama is the only Democrat who can reach southern voters.

But either way - I don't think we should pick a candidate based on which State they call home.
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karynnj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-29-07 11:05 AM
Response to Reply #13
19. Kerry beat Edwards in every southern state except the Carolinas in the primaries.
So, what proof do you have that they liked Edwards better.
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Perry Logan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-29-07 05:43 AM
Response to Original message
14. Having a lock on the South is like having a lock on venereal disease.
Edited on Wed Aug-29-07 05:43 AM by Perry Logan
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Clark2008 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Aug-29-07 06:09 AM
Response to Reply #14
16. Nice - and do you use that broad brush bigotry on other
people of a certain region/socio-economic group?

:eyes:
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