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Obama, enjoy the honeymoon while it lasts

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There is a double standard when it comes to current media coverage of Obama. One can only hope that changes soon, because to treat him differently from the other serious presidential candidates does represent a racist attitude.

Interestingly, Obama was critical of some in the media for coverage of him focusing on “softer” topics while he wanted to talk substantive issues. Chill out, Senator, and count your blessings. If People magazine wants to show you in a bathing suit and talk about your pecs, consider yourself lucky. And if you are that worried about the coverage of you as a “rock star” with loads of personality, stop doing interviews with Oprah or personality-driven magazines. Exactly how did you and your wife get on the February cover of Ebony?  Was that because of your position on Iraq or because the two of you are very photogenic and have an even more interesting personal story to tell?

To his credit, when Obama screwed up recently by saying the 3,000-plus American lives that were lost in Iraq were “wasted,” he immediately apologized. He minimized the damage and potential fallout, both in the media and with voters. Apologizing was a very smart move, something Hillary Clinton still hasn’t figured out when it comes to her 2002 Iraq vote. 

This relationship between Obama and the media is going to be a fascinating one to watch, because unlike Jesse Jackson and even Al Sharpton, Obama has huge crossover appeal and could in fact be our next president. I only hope that we in the media start treating him like that and press him harder on the substantive issues that matter most to American citizens. 

My advice to Obama is to enjoy the honeymoon while it lasts, because when it does end, history shows that it can get pretty ugly. The media loves to build national candidates up, but we love even more to tear them down. Barack Obama’s fascinating story continues.

Write to Steve Adubato at

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