'Obama's a Socialist' is Nothing New

Hillary Clinton socialistGOP Primary Story Stars a Democratic Antagonist
By Michael D. Shear
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, November 14, 2007

They mock her proposals, utter her name with a sneer and win standing ovations by ridiculing her ideas as un-American, even socialistic. She has become the one thing the Republican candidates for president can agree on.

Hillary Clinton.
(h/t Glennzilla) "[U]n-American, even socialistic." Against the front-running Democratic nominee for President in 2007. Near the end of the article:
"The Republicans clearly think Senator Clinton is the Democrat most likely to win the general election, which is why they are so obsessed with her," said Phil Singer, a spokesman for the Clinton campaign. "They know that if she wins, she'll end the war in Iraq and stop the other failed Bush policies."

Some Democrats worry that her presence at the top of the ticket could be the worst thing for their party, creating an automatic turnout boost for Republicans in some key state and local races. Advisers to former senator John Edwards (N.C.) and Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) note that Republicans are well versed in running anti-Clinton campaigns and argue that the GOP candidate might face a bigger challenge running against one of her rivals.
obama socialistI bought this argument back in those heady days, when Democrats could idealize their candidates without fear of the looming reality of executive power. I was for John Edwards at first, as he was the most progressive candidate with a shot. Now it's obvious he had a thin veneer of liberal firebrand over a core of raw ambition and selfish ego. But at the time he was my guy. I think it became clear that he didn't have a real shot pretty soon after this article, if not before, but certainly the Iowa caucus buried him. I don't remember when I jumped on the Barack Obama bandwagon, either before or after Iowa. However, I do remember that Obama and Hillary Clinton were virtually indistinguishable on policy - and that Clinton was more progressive on health insurance reform, backing an individual mandate to carry coverage. And I'm pretty sure Obama was also more gung-ho about sending troops to Afghanistan - the "good war".

Back to the point, it was incredibly naive of me to think that the GOP hate machine would somehow be more restrained with Obama than Clinton. I've been thinking lately that "Should have stuck with Hillary" was the right call. Maybe she would have stopped the other failed Bush43 policies. Even a few more than Obama would have been something.