Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Obama: "My Wealthy Donors are Corrupting Me!"

Jim Geraghty says he's "been pretty hard on Barack Obama lately", and so he says "it's time to give Obama some credit where it's due".

"I think the donors who fueled Obama's rise in Illinois politics were a bunch of limousine liberal, out-of-touch elitists." he says, "and it turns out, Obama thinks that way, too."

From the Audacity of Hope, page 114:

Increasingly, I found myself spending time with people of means - law firm partners and investment bankers etc. ... They were smart... liberal in their politics, expecting nothing more than a hearing of their opinions in exchange for checks. But they reflected.. the perspectives of their class; the top 1 percent or so... that can afford to write a $2,000 check to a political candidate.

They believed in the free market and an educational meritocracy; they found it hard to imagine that there might be any social ill that could not be cured with a high SAT score. They.. were not particularly sympathetic to those whose lives were upended by movements of global capital...

I know that as a consequence of my fund-raising I became more like the wealthy donors I met... I spent more and more of my time above the fray, outside the world of immediate hunger, disappointment... and frequent hardship of the other 99 percent of the population - that is, the people I'd entered public life to serve.

"Amen, senator!" Geraghty exclaims, "I think the donors Obama describes are a bunch of arrogant snobs."

"But", he adds, "what does that make Obama, who listens to them offer their opinion and concludes they have a hard time imaging "that there might be any social ill that could not be cured with a high SAT score"?

"With Obama," he concludes, "it seems a $2,000 donation will get you his ear, but not his respect."


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