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12 year-old Obama questionnaire surfaces
Posted by: McQ on Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Mike Huckabee had some 15 year-old AP questionnaire pop up the other day which had him claiming that homosexuality is "aberrant" and "sinful" as well as saying that AIDS research was receiving an unfair amount of federal money.

Of course one has to figure that this particular questionnaire didn't just suddenly resurface, but was instead strategically deployed when the time was right. I mean, why waste it on a guy running a poor 5th, right?

Well you might ask the same questions about the 12 year-old questionnaire which has "suddenly" surfaced in which Obama gives some answers to issues which may hurt him among more conservative Democrats:
Filling out a 12-page questionnaire from an Illinois voter group as he sought a state Senate seat in 1996, Obama answered “yes” or “no” — without using the available space to calibrate his views — on some of the most emotional and politically potent issues that a public official can confront.

“Do you support … capital punishment?” one question asked.

“No,” the 1996 Obama campaign typed, without explaining his answer in the space provided.

“Do you support state legislation to … ban the manufacture, sale and possession of handguns?” asked one of the three dozen questions.

“Yes,” was Obama’s entire answer.
Of course this is all good stuff wasted on someone who isn't an electoral threat. But as the polls show a dead-heat now, well, here it comes.

Now I'm not opposed to finding this stuff out, but it is interesting to watch the way all of this is stage managed, with quite a bit of that stage management apparently being done by the media. Agendas? Perish the thought.

The interesting thing is there is no equivocation in Obama's answers. Heh ... the equivocating, however, will certainly start now.
For instance, Obama says he supports the death penalty in limited circumstances, such as an especially heinous crime. The campaign says Obama has consistently supported the death penalty “in principle” and opposed it “in practice.”

On handguns, his campaign said he has consistently been for “common-sense limits, but not banning” throughout his 11-year political career.
So which is it?

Ah the political season - what fun.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

For instance, Obama says he supports the death penalty in limited circumstances, such as an especially heinous crime. The campaign says Obama has consistently supported the death penalty “in principle” and opposed it “in practice.”
Sometimes the correct position is difficult to state in a soundbite. Obama, like myself, doesn’t have an objection to the death penalty in theory. In other words, he thinks there are some crimes that are so heinous that the perpetrator "deserves" to die. But, like most people who are familiar with our criminal justice system, Obama worries about the execution of the innocent. The problem with the death penalty is that it’s permanent. It cannot be undone when new evidence emerges. And given the difficultly of designing an error-proof system (if such a system is even possible), it’s better to simply do away witht the death penalty altogether.
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
Your explanation, AL, doesn’t gibe with Obama’s answers from 12 years ago. He had ample space to explain himself, and declined to use it.

As for me, I have no problem with someone changing his views over time: it is a sign of thoughtfulness. But given the hooplah over Huckabee’s statement from 15 years ago, it will be interesting to see whether the same absolute standard will be applied to Obama.
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://
I have no argument with your point, AL. Seems perfectly understandable. I was just interested in the timing and the ’stage management’ aspects of all of this.

However, I do have to say the Obama campaign reaction to it was less than awesome:
The campaign also pointed to a story in the Politico, which obtained a 1996 questionnaire under Obama’s name wherein he supported a single payer health insurance system, supports hand gun registration, and otherwise liberals it up. The Obama campaign had no comment, aside from saying that the questionnaire was filled out by someone who worked for Obama at the time and not Obama itself.
Written By: McQ

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