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Mass Decision 2010: President Obama Rallies Massachusetts Voters

By Talia Whyte

Nearly 15,000 strong gathered early in front of the Hynes Convention Center Oct. 16 just to get a glimpse of President Barack Obama, who was in town in support of Gov. Deval Patrick’s re-election bid and other Massachusetts Democratic candidates running for office. As expected, all the people I spoke to enthusiastically supported Obama’s job performance, stating mainly that they believe he is still “cleaning up the mistakes” of the Bush administration.

While most of the folks I interviewed expressed concern about the economy, I was very surprised that there weren’t more people who saw the “war on terror” as one of their important issues. While Obama didn’t start the military actions in Iraq and Afghanistan, many feel that the wars are not only draining money from the country and only contributing to the bad economy, but that Obama is continuing most of Bush’s war agenda.

Many people were against Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize last year because, like commentator Marc Lamont Hill put it, he is a president in Bush’s clothing. Both Bush and Obama have the same policy towards Afghanistan, have succumbed to pressure from generals and sent more troops into the country and, most importantly, have not explained a clear exit strategy.

“Despite what many Obamaphiles want to believe, the President was not ‘anti-war’, but rather “anti-Iraq war,” said Dr Hill, questioning the silence from the Left. “Now that Obama has fulfilled his hawkish promise, the ball is in our court. Were we against President Bush or were we against his policies? Were we against the war in Iraq or all unnecessary wars? When we elected Obama, were we looking for a new driver or a new direction? Based on what I’ve seen so far, the answer isn’t pretty.”

Also, are attacks on Iran, North Korea or even Pakistan imminent?

Furthermore, there may be an issue with African-Americans not wanting to look like they are openly criticizing the president, although there are obvious flaws in his war policy. Maybe in the next two years, black voters will hold Obama accountable on this and other issues.