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Obama's Record: The Truth Is Out There

If Obama says he loves you, check it out.

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Obama And Exelon
"When residents in Illinois voiced outrage two years ago upon learning that the Exelon Corporation had not disclosed radioactive leaks at one of its nuclear plants, the state's freshman senator, Barack Obama, took up their cause," the New York Times reports.

"Mr. Obama scolded Exelon and federal regulators for inaction and introduced a bill to require all plant owners to notify state and local authorities immediately of even small leaks. He has boasted of it on the campaign trail, telling a crowd in Iowa in December that it was 'the only nuclear legislation that I've passed.'

"'I just did that last year,' he said, to murmurs of approval.

"A close look at the path his legislation took tells a very different story."

You might even say Obama lied.

"While he initially fought to advance his bill, even holding up a presidential nomination to try to force a hearing on it, Mr. Obama eventually rewrote it to reflect changes sought by Senate Republicans, Exelon and nuclear regulators."

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"Senator Obama's staff was sending us copies of the bill to review, and we could see it weakening with each successive draft,' said Joe Cosgrove, a park district director in Will County, Ill., where low-level radioactive runoff had turned up in groundwater. 'The teeth were just taken out of it."

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"Since 2003, executives and employees of Exelon, which is based in Illinois, have contributed at least $227,000 to Mr. Obama's campaigns for the United States Senate and for president. Two top Exelon officials, Frank M. Clark, executive vice president, and John W. Rogers Jr., a director, are among his largest fund-raisers.

"Another Obama donor, John W. Rowe, chairman of Exelon, is also chairman of the Nuclear Energy Institute, the nuclear power industry's lobbying group, based in Washington. Exelon's support for Mr. Obama far exceeds its support for any other presidential candidate.

"In addition, Mr. Obama's chief political strategist, David Axelrod, has worked as a consultant to Exelon."

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"[C]ontrary to Mr. Obama's comments in Iowa, [the bill] ultimately died amid parliamentary wrangling in the full Senate . . . The campaign did not directly address the question of why Mr. Obama had told Iowa voters that the legislation had passed."

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"In interviews over the past two weeks, Obama aides insisted that the revisions did not substantively alter the bill. In fact, it was left drastically different."

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"The revised bill was never taken up in the full Senate, where partisan parliamentary maneuvering resulted in a number of bills being shelved before the 2006 session ended.

"Still, the legislation has come in handy on the campaign trail. Last May, in response to questions about his ties to Exelon, Mr. Obama wrote a letter to a Nevada newspaper citing the bill as evidence that he stands up to powerful interests.

"When I learned that radioactive tritium had leaked out of an Exelon nuclear plant in Illinois," he wrote, "I led an effort in the Senate to require utilities to notify the public of any unplanned release of radioactive substances."

"Last October, Mr. Obama reintroduced the bill, in its rewritten form."

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Obama And Coal
"After co-sponsoring legislation earlier this year for billions of dollars in subsidies for liquefied coal, Obama more recently began qualifying his support in ways that have left both environmentalists and coal industry officials unsure where he stands," the Washington Post reports. "His shift has helped shape this month's Senate debate over how to reduce both dependence on foreign oil and carbon dioxide emissions; on Tuesday, he voted against one proposal to boost liquefied coal and for a more narrowly worded one. Both failed.

"More broadly, Obama's contortions on coal point to the limits of the role he likes to assume, that of a unifier who can appeal across traditional lines and employ a 'new kind of politics' to solve problems."

Obama And Health Care
"When Barack Obama and fellow state lawmakers in Illinois tried to expand healthcare coverage in 2003 with the Health Care Justice Act, they drew fierce opposition from the insurance industry, which saw it as a back-handed attempt to impose a government-run system," the Boston Globe reports.

"Over the next 15 months, insurers and their lobbyists found a sympathetic ear in Obama, who amended the bill more to their liking partly because of concerns they raised with him and his aides, according to lobbyists, Senate staff, and Obama's remarks on the Senate floor.

"The wrangling over the health care measure, which narrowly passed and became law in 2004, illustrates how Obama, during his eight years in the Illinois Senate, was able to shepherd major legislation by negotiating competing interests in Springfield, the state capital. But it also shows how Obama's own experience in lawmaking involved dealings with the kinds of lobbyists and special interests he now demonizes on the campaign trail."

Obama's "Present" Votes
"Much of Clinton's early criticism of Obama's 'present' votes have involved his actions on seven bills aimed at restricting abortion," the Tribune reports.

"Obama and officials from Planned Parenthood have said the 'present' votes were a strategy to give cover to Democrats who might be attacked by Republicans later if they voted 'no.' But most, if not all, of the lawmakers in question were in politically safe districts.

"Shortly after Obama's presidential bid was announced a year ago, state Sen. Debbie Halvorson (D-Crete) said her 'present' votes were 'an easy way of voting' because casting a 'no' vote would be 'so harsh [since] nobody's for killing babies.'

"'I don't recall any kind of strategy,' said Halvorson, now seeking the Democratic nomination for Congress. Planned Parenthood "may have said it was OK to vote 'present,' but no one on that list [of those voting present] needed cover."

Is Obama lying?

"In a recent debate, Clinton seized on a vote when Obama alone voted 'present' on a bill allowing sexual assault victims to ask prosecutors to request the sealing of court records," the Tribune notes.

"Obama responded by noting he had sponsored such a bill approved by the state Senate, only to learn later that it 'needed to be fixed so that it wouldn't be struck down.' The Obama campaign said Friday he was referring to concerns that the measure violated free-speech protections prohibiting judges from sealing records of trials held in open court.

"Legislative records show Obama did co-sponsor a version of the bill backed by Democrats, but it was vetoed by then-Republican Gov. George Ryan. The governor opted to sign an identical bill sponsored by Republicans - the one Obama voted 'present' on. Obama did not state his objection on the floor at the time, though, and the law remains in effect."

Obama Vs. Obama
Ordinarily I might dismiss an article from The Washington Times as right-wing tripe, but when the paper reports that "Barack Obama, the senatorial candidate of 2004, might have a bone to pick with Barack Obama, the presidential candidate of 2008," it sounds an awfully lot like the AP report that said "If he wanted, the Barack Obama of today could have a pretty good debate with the Barack Obama of yesterday."

And both back up their assertions.

Obama, Harry, Louise, Newt and Rush
Obama is right about re-fighting the wars of the 90s, only this time he's the one playing the roles of Newt Gingrich and Rush Limbaugh.

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From his secret money operation to his media manipulation, Obamathon pulls back the curtain on one of the biggest political fairy tales of our times.



Permalink

Posted on February 4, 2008


MUSIC - Britney's IUD.
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POLITICS - UIC: Soda Taxes Work.
SPORTS - Locked Out And Loaded.

BOOKS - Foxconned.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Don't Let Your Pet OD.


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