Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Setting the Record Straight

To those of you who have been directed to this blog by way of the Newsweek piece I'd like to clarify a few details:

I spoke with David Remnick last summer during a 30-minute phone call about a gathering at the Ayers/Dohrn home in 1995. It appears that Mr. Remnick conflated two different events, one of which I did not attend. The get-together I attended occurred long after the one where Alice Palmer introduced Obama to the movers and shakers of Hyde Park. Alice Palmer was not at the event I attended. By the time I met Barack and Michelle Obama, he'd already had a major falling out with Palmer over backing away from his assurances to her that he would step out of the race for her seat should she want to keep it.

The irony here is that while Obama and Ayers were closer than either one of them has admitted, Obama's politics then and now have always been centrist. During the presidential campaign, however, the demagoguing from Palin and the Right along with the opportunistic left-baiting by Ben Smith at Politico about the Ayers connection served only to obscure the way this event underscored what others have said about Obama's early success, namely, his ability to appear to be all things to all people.

4 comments:

Publius said...

Hi, I ran across your blog post and I have a question. You wrote in this post that Barack Obama and Alice Palmer had a falling out over his "backing away from his assurances that he would step out of the race for her seat should she decide to keep it."

Did you just mistype that, or is that what happened.

I'm asking because I read in the media that it was Alice Palmer who had promised Obama that she was not going to run and that Obama told her that once he announced he was running he would not back out of the race even if she decided she didn't want to give up her seat? And that it was her who went back on her assurance to him.

Anyway I just wondered what really happened. You would know better than the media I suppose.

Publius said...

or not lol

red rabbit said...

Publius,

No, I did not "mistype." This is my recollection of the sequence of events.

This article comes closest to the truth: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/obama/chi-070403obama-ballot-archive,0,5693903.story?page=1

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