Obama kisses Sharpton’s ring

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By BETH FOUHY 

NEW YORK (AP) – Wooing black voters while tackling questions about his experience, Democrat Barack Obama said Saturday that his years as a community organizer and accomplishments in the Illinois state Senate have prepared him well for the presidency.  

Addressing the National Action Network, a civil rights group founded by Rev. Al Sharpton, Obama touted his successes as an Illinois lawmaker in providing health insurance to children and reducing the price of prescription drugs for senior citizens. He also told of passing legislation to monitor racial profiling and to require that police interrogations of suspects in capital cases be videotaped.“I haven’t just talked about these things, I’ve actually done them,” he said, adding that he’d worked well with the Republicans who controlled the state Senate for most of his tenure there.

With just over two years in the U.S. Senate, Obama has faced questions over whether he has sufficient experience to be president.

On the campaign trail, front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton stresses her long career in public life and often warns voters that the next president will need to “hit the ground running.”

Sharpton, who ran for the Democratic nomination in 2004, has also openly questioned Obama’s credentials for the job. Obama, running to be the first black president, acknowledged those concerns. He also assured the largely black audience he did not believe he was automatically entitled to their support.

“I’ve said to Rev. Sharpton and I’ll say it today, if there is somebody – I don’t care whether they are white or black or they are male or female – if there is somebody who has been more on the forefront on behalf of the issues you care about and has more concrete accomplishments on behalf of the things you’re concerned about, I’m happy to see you endorse them. But I am absolutely confident you will not find that,” he said.

With black voters a key part of the Democratic party base, the four-day NAN convention has attracted nearly all the 2008 Democratic contenders, as well as former President Bill Clinton and DNC Chairman Howard Dean. Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd had been expected to speak but scheduling problems forced him to cancel.

A spokeswoman said Sharpton was not expected to endorse a candidate soon.

Hillary Clinton, who spoke Friday, won several standing ovations from the audience.

11 thoughts on “Obama kisses Sharpton’s ring

  1. rikyrah

    SB,

    You wrote a few weeks ago that you had a piece you were working on about the Chicago Aldermanic races. Any thoughts on Tillman losing?

  2. Nice to see Obama standing arm in arm with the Black counterpart of the Aryan Nations’ Tom Metzger. Metzger’s hate speech, in fact, was indirectly responsible for one act of racist violence (the murder of an Ethiopian immigrant) while Sharpton’s was indirectly responsible for eight racist killings: one in Crown Heights and the others in the arson of a Jewish-owned store in Harlem.

    Obama has just put a stinking albatross around his own neck (see the Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner) and it will cost him the Presidency, and perhaps even his Senate seat.

  3. skepticalbrotha,

    Tom Metzger directs vicious hate speech against Jews, African-Americans, Hispanics, and Asians.

    Al Sharpton has personally directed vicious hate speech against Jews, white people, and even Black people he doesn’t like (having used the N word to apply to David Dinkins).

    Tom Metzger’s hate speech was indirectly responsible for a racist murder of a Black person. Al Sharpton’s hate speech was indirectly responsible for eight racist and anti-Semitic killings.

    I don’t see any difference whatsoever between them. Both deal in hatred of other races and ethnicities, and both have played indirect roles in provoking fatal violence.

  4. Bill,

    Your antipathy towards Al Sharpton is beyond the pale. The vicious cartoons and youTube’s on your sight, which I saw on YouTube last night are racist in the extreme. I don’t care to see or hear from you again in this forum but will not ban your comments because I find that they illustrate your insanity in a way that is clearer than anything I could say. Good Luck with your crusade against MoveOn.org, one of the most progressive organizations in the country. When you fail, come back and discuss it, but only if your medicated.

  5. Cliff

    It is so amazing the brain of these people. They killed our people in the hundreds of millions, committed the most heinous crimes ever know to man. They continue to kill us, incarcerate us and systematically destroy us, and think that when one of our leaders makes statements which they believe may have motivated us to kill one of their own people, to think that we are so ignorant that they’re people who are still alive spending every minute of they’re lives to destroy black people, to prevent the unity and rise of black people, that we are so mentally inferior that we would be deceived into thinking that if one to two white people get killed as a result of what they (the major proprietors of hate) considered a hate speech, then we are supposed to consider the person who dictated the speech a racist. In 2007 you really think that black people are still that ignorant? I guess this is a test, here were what the instructions probably said “Go to skeptical brotha, a site which has a forum which probably has some of the most intelligent black people on the web in the nation. See if you can convince them that Al Sharpton is a racist. Bring up small incidents like “Crown Heights”, “The Tawanna Brawley case”, see if they care more about a few white deaths, as opposed to millions of their people that we killed, and continue to kill till this day, the millions of their own people that we have incarcerated, the millions of their own people that we brutalize and oppressed everyday, see if they still worship us and our people more than their own, see if they don’t give a damn that we have not given them a damn thing in reparations (land, freedom, finance, knowledge). What is the root motivation of these instructions? There is always a hidden agenda.

  6. William

    Why do Blacks have to make color such a devisive issue? Do they not see the level playing field for anyone willing to work? I will be the first to admit we live in an imperfect world. But color should not be a trump card to excuse babies born out of wedlock, rampant drug abuse, social income dependancy (yes, demanding reperation), and overall lack of taking, personal, and individual, responsibilty, and owning up to the consequences, and also rewards, for our very own actions.
    Though blacks were freed from slavery almost 150 years ago, their personal rights, and acknowledgement as equals to the white race was not made law till close to the last 1/3 of this time. Yet in their minds they continue to harbor resentment, and hatred twords anything, or anyone in a position of authority, or superiority.
    everyone of us, black white, brown… will be under human authority for on this earth.
    The black people must get over the color issue, and get focued on the race issue. The race tword healing, strengthing, courage, integrity, truth, forgivness, and love. The hatred that is stoked in each person over what cannot be helped, the color of one’s skin, is a cancer of society that seeks to destroy not to build.
    We all are able to see first hand the effects of generational hatred, and lazieness, if our eyes are opened. But so many of us choose to be blind, and blame others for our own lacking… And until we are awakened, there is absoultly nothing that will apease the soul in darkness.

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