Republicans 4 Obama
by Todd Beeton, Fri Oct 24, 2008 at 02:46:04 PM EDT
There's been a flood of Republican endorsements of Barack Obama in recent days, the most notable of which were Colin Powell and Ken "cakewalk" Adelman, but now those have been followed in quick succession by former Bush press secretary Scott McClellan, former MA Governor William Weld, former MN Governor Arne Carlson, Barry Goldwater's granddaughter CC Goldwater and, today, perhaps most dramatically of all, Charles Fried...one of McCain's top...former...advisors.
Charles Fried, a professor at Harvard Law School, has long been one of the most important conservative thinkers in the United States. Under President Reagan, he served, with great distinction, as Solicitor General of the United States. Since then, he has been prominently associated with several Republican leaders and candidates, most recently John McCain, for whom he expressed his enthusiastic support in January.
This week, Fried announced that he has voted for Obama-Biden by absentee ballot. In his letter to Trevor Potter, the General Counsel to the McCain-Palin campaign, he asked that his name be removed from the several campaign-related committees on which he serves. In that letter, he said that chief among the reasons for his decision "is the choice of Sarah Palin at a time of deep national crisis."
The endorsement, to be printed in Sunday's newspaper and released on courant.com at 5 p.m. Saturday, cites Obama's leadership qualities, his can-do message and his calm temperament.
The Courant, the nation's oldest continuously published newspaper, endorsed Sen. Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney for the Republican nomination in this year's presidential primaries. Bill Clinton is the only Democrat whom the The Courant had previously endorsed for president, in 1992 and 1996, but the editorial board later called for Clinton's resignation after the Monica Lewinsky scandal.
With 11 days left until the election, Obama is dominating the daily newspaper endorsement race 134-52 (representing a daily circulation of 15 million vs. 4.1 million.) Notably, Obama is also dominating McCain among newspapers that endorsed the candidate of the opposite party in 2004. DemConWatch has that tally at Obama winning 29 Bush endorsers vs. McCain winning just 4 Kerry endorsers.
This trend of Republicans embracing Barack Obama fulfills one of the promises of Obama's candidacy -- that he would unite both parties, that he would draw significant cross-party support -- one that I was not convinced would come to fruition yet one that I am thrilled to see is. An added bonus is that it really undermines John McCain's claim that he has the monopoly on consensus building.