The Washington Times is reporting what seems like a smart move: Barack Obama will probably deal with the most serious problems facing the nation first and postpone action on potentially divisive actions, like the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell.” My guess is that Obama will delay the push until after the 2010 mid-term elections.
Bob Knight is quoted as suggesting that Americans don’t have this policy on their radar now but will be quick to react negatively if the policy is debated nationally. I think he is probably on target. While attitudes toward homosexuals continue to become more positive, I think questions about practical matters of living arrangements, morale and recruitment will be raised by opponents.
From Drudge: Three papers who endorsed John McCain have been told their reporters are not allowed to fly with the candidate during the final days.
The Washington Times has more…
The Washington Times is reporting tonight that Obama urged Iraqi leaders to delay an agreement on US presence in Iraq until a new administration was in place. From the Times:
At the same time the Bush administration was negotiating a still elusive agreement to keep the U.S. military in Iraq, Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama tried to convince Iraqi leaders in private conversations that the president shouldn’t be allowed to enact the deal without congressional approval.
Mr. Obama’s conversations with the Iraqi leaders, confirmed to The Washington Times by his campaign aides, began just two weeks after he clinched the Democratic presidential nomination in June and stirred controversy over the appropriateness of a White House candidate’s contacts with foreign governments while the sitting president is conducting a war.
Some of the specifics of the conversations remain the subject of dispute. Iraqi leaders purported to The Times that Mr. Obama urged Baghdad to delay an agreement with Mr. Bush until next year when a new president will be in office – a charge the Democratic campaign denies.
Mr. Obama spoke June 16 to Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari when he was in Washington, according to both the Iraqi Embassy in Washington and the Obama campaign. Both said the conversation was at Mr. Zebari’s request and took place on the phone because Mr. Obama was traveling.
However, the two sides differ over what Mr. Obama said.
“In the conversation, the senator urged Iraq to delay the [memorandum of understanding] between Iraq and the United States until the new administration was in place,” said Samir Sumaidaie, Iraq’s ambassador to the United States.
He said Mr. Zebari replied that any such agreement would not bind a new administration. “The new administration will have a free hand to opt out,” he said the foreign minister told Mr. Obama.
Mr. Sumaidaie did not participate in the call, he said, but stood next to Mr. Zebari during the conversation and was briefed by him immediately afterward.
Provided Mr. Sumaidaie is correct, the actions by Mr. Obama were out-of-line – some would say worse that out-of-line. Conducting foreign policy is not within the resume of a Presidential candidate.
This morning, the Washington Times published my article on the American Psychological Association Mental Health and Abortion Task Force.
In it, I call for the APA to start over on this topic. One study formed the essential basis for the Task Force conclusions. I do not agree that the Gilchrist study is better than the 2005 Fergusson study which did demonstrate a reason to be cautious. However, even if one concludes Gilchrist is best, that does not mean it is sufficient or adequate to make a dogmatic conclusion. By calling one study, the 1995 Gilchrist study, “the best scientific evidence,” the task force has misled the public by portraying the best evidence as being good enough evidence.
Tony Snow, loved and respected journalist died recently after a battle with cancer. George Archibald knew Tony Snow while they were both at the Washington Times. In this article, George remembers his friend as only an insider can.