Obama is adored in Europe.
I’m not really sure what quality makes him so adorable but Europeans seem to have embraced him as the Great White Hope for America.
“Do you think Americans will vote for a black president?” I was asked recently.
I felt like saying, ‘He’s not black, he’s mulatto.’ Probably not helpful.
“Yes, I think they will.”
“Do you think he has a chance of winning?”
“Yes, I do.”
At the time I was undecided, but have since found myself leaning in his direction. Until now I have really been unaware of just how vested Europe seems to be in the election. The media coverage has really surprised me, with reporters at both conventions to bring news of the latest decisions taking place about the ongoing candidacies of the respective parties.
Brits want Obama to win.
“You wouldn’t vote for McCain would you?” they ask with incredulity.
“Really?” they say. “Why?”
McCain is not Bush, as much as Obama would like people to think he is. McCain does not have the conservative backing the way Bush did, in fact he is loathed by the right almost as much as Bush is the world over.
Before leaving the US I tried to make sense of why conservatives hated McCain so much. One even said, “If McCain is the nominee I’ll vote for Hilary.”
I never did get a straight answer and wonder even today what it is about his political career that makes him so detestable.
Now, there is Palin. Why Palin? Why? I don’t get it.
Meanwhile, Obama continues to nurture the groundswell of support that has typified his campaign.
“He’s a community organizer,” answer those queried about his apparent lack of political accomplishments.
What is that?
Still, his support grows.
Recently I saw a program on the telly about Obama that outlined his life history and rise to political prominence. No one seems able to explain why he stands at the cusp of the presidency. Apparently he as a mesmerizing personality and presence.
One celebrity described his encounter with Obama, “I feel like I breathed the air of our nation’s greatest new leader.”
“He exudes confidence and hope and calm for the nation. When he walks into a room everyone seems to relax. They trust him.”
Is that presidential? He certainly speaks well, much better than Bush could ever dream of. He’s attractive and seems to look the part. But, is he the man?
Gordon Brown, the PM over here has trouble with his presentation. He always looks haggard. His hair is unruly and, because of an eye condition, looks half asleep. But, he’s apparently brilliant and is an experienced politician. He just doesn’t look Prime Ministerial.
Obama’s got some good ideas and, for me, the most important is his plan for universal health care. He seems to have genuine compassion for the poor. He is a community organizer after all.
I don’t expect to see universal health care for at least a generation. But, maybe Obama can get things rolling. He definitely looks like he could do it.