Sunday, October 24, 2004

a heartfelt endorsement

from the Trib:
The Tribune today offers a heartfelt endorsement for Barack Obama in the race for the U.S. Senate. ... Obama has made a career of converting doubters into believers. There were the women of the Altgeld Gardens public housing project who, two decades ago, didn't believe the fresh-faced community organizer who came calling could help them get their apartments inspected for asbestos contamination. There were the South and West Side ministers who told Obama when they first met him that they didn't need any "high-talking college-educated brothers like yourself" to help them solve community problems. People have been won over by Obama's sincerity and persistence. "He conveys a sense of calm assurance," said Martha Minow, one of Obama's professors at Harvard Law School, where he was elected the first black president of the Harvard Law Review. "There's an integrity that just shines through, a sense of looking above the small and petty differences." When Obama gets up to speak on the floor of the General Assembly, "the place quiets down," said Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan, who served in the Senate with him. People listen, partly because of his eloquence, and partly because opponents know they are about to hear the best argument the other side has to offer. "And often because he's right," Madigan said.