The Case Against Barack Obama

Infobox Book
name = The Case Against Barack Obama


author = David Freddoso
country = United States
language = English
subject = Biographical / Current affairs
publisher = Regnery Publishing
release_date = August 4, 2008
media_type = Print (Hardcover)
pages = 298
isbn = ISBN 978-1596985667

The Case Against Barack Obama, by author David Freddoso, is a bestselling book examining the life and opinions of United States presidential candidate and Senator Barack Obama. Freddoso is a political reporter for the website of the conservative magazine "National Review". The subtitle of the book, published by Regnery Publishing, is "The Unlikely Rise and Unexamined Agenda of the Media's Favorite Candidate".

Freddoso said in an August 2008 interview that the book as an attempt to address what he sees as two wrong ways of considering Obama as a presidential candidate. The author wanted to counter those, including those in the news media, who look on Obama uncritically, and to do so in a way different from those who "are smearing him on the Internet for supposedly being a secret Muslim or supposedly not saluting the flag". [No byline, [http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/utiles/myprint/print.php "Is Obama the 'man his multi-million dollar media campaign portrays him as?’"] , Catholic News Agency, August 21, 2008, retrieved same day] The book harshly criticizes Obama over policy matters, according to Ben Smith, a writer at "The Politico". For the most part, the book is drawn from previously published sources, although Freddoso does do some original reporting.Smith, Ben, [http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=8DE07FB2-3048-5C12-0090F74D5579425E "New book: Obama a lefty, not a reformer"] , "The Politico", August 4, 2008, retrieved August 15, 2008]

The first press run of the book totaled nearly 300,000 copies, [http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/08/05/politics/main4323254.shtml "Anti-Obama Books Are Best-Sellers: Three Releases Criticizing Obama In Amazon Top 20 Despite Little Media Coverage"] , Associated Press article, as published on the CBS News website, August 5, 2008, retrieved August 5, 2008] and it appeared on the August 24, 2008 New York Times Bestseller List for hardcover nonfiction at No. 5. [New York Times Bestseller list, [http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/24/books/bestseller/besthardnonfiction.html?_r=1&oref=slogin "Hardcover Nonfiction"] , August 24, 2008, accessed August 19, 2008] Publicity for the book is handled by the conservative public relations firm Creative Response Concepts.Martin, Jonathan, [http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0608/11263.html "First Obama attack book in the works"] , news article (Martin also has a blog), "The Politico", June 23, 2008, retrieved August 15, 2008] The book was released within weeks of two other books critical of Obama written by conservative writers: Jerome Corsi’s "The Obama Nation: Leftist Politics and the Cult of Personality", and Dick Morris’ "Fleeced: How Barack Obama, Media Mockery of Terrorist Threats, Liberals Who Want to Kill Talk Radio, the Do-Nothing Congress, Companies That Help Iran, and Washington Lobbyists for Foreign Governments Are Scamming Us … and What to Do About It."

Content

Obama's political positions are reviewed in the book. "If you’re a liberal, reading the following might make you support Obama even more," Freddoso states at one point in the book. "But if you’re honest, I think you’ll agree he’s no centrist."

The book also discusses Obama's alleged "radical associations" with controversial people such as Bill Ayers, a former Weatherman organization leader, and Obama's former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

Part of the book focuses on Obama's having made accommodations with the Cook County Democratic Organization headed by Chicago's mayor, Richard M. Daley, despite Obama's start in politics as a candidate appealing to anti-machine voters in the Hyde Park neighborhood of the city.

The book also dwells at length on Obama’s opposition to an Illinois bill that sought to protect infants “born alive,” but whose critics said it could have fundamentally undermined the right to abortion. A similar bill passed the United States Congress only after an explicit commitment to Roe v. Wade was added, which Freddoso dismisses as trivial, but which abortion rights advocates saw as crucial.

Response

Barack Obama presidential campaign

A spokesman for Barack Obama's presidential campaign said the book, along with Jerome Corsi's biography, distorts the story of the candidate's life and his record. "These books are cut from the same cloth, made up of the same old debunked smears that have been floating around the Internet for months," said spokesman Tommy Vietor.Wills, Christopher, [http://washtimes.com/news/2008/aug/15/two-books-two-styles-one-target-obama-1/ "Two books, two styles, one target: Obama"] , Associated Press article, as published on "The Washington Times" website, August 15, 2008, retrieved same day]

On September 15, 2008, the Obama campaign mobilized its “Obama Action Wire” sending an email out to Obama supporters urging them to complain to WGN Radio in Chicago after host Milt Rosenberg invited Freddoso on his show to discuss his book. [ [http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-obama-mediasep17,0,6325137.story Obama mobilizes rapid response on Web] ]

Reviews

Ben Smith, a writer at The Politico, called the book the "first serious negative biography of Senator Barack Obama". The book's official release date was August 4, 2008. According to Smith, the book "occupies a small island in the often-shrill sea of criticism of Obama [...] Freddoso opts largely for a fact-based critique, and writes that the viral and overt smears have allowed Obama to evade substantive criticism." Smith wrote that the book "rehashes familiar complaints, though in more detail — and often with more nuance, if not much sympathy — than you’re likely to see in the conservative media."

Jim Geraghty, a writer for "National Review" and "National Review Online", wrote in his review of the book that "Freddoso hones in on one aspect of the Obama message, the idea that Obama is a reformer, and obliterates it in the manner of a professional demolitions crew." Geraghty also compared the book to Jerome Corsi's "The Obama Nation". "If Obama falls short of his presidential aspiration, his supporters will be quick to attribute it to 'false smears' in Corsi’s book," Geraghty predicted. "But any Obama defeat is more likely to be a result of the hard truths in Freddoso’s." Geraghty notes that David Freddoso thanks him in the book's acknowledgments section. [Geraghty, Jim, [http://article.nationalreview.com/print/?q=MmQ1OTJlZjViYTU1ODQ3MDcyMDRiZmY3ODJhNDk1Zjg= "The Case For "The Case Against Barack Obama"] , August 19, 2008, 4:00 a.m., retrieved same day]

Alleged inaccuracy

According to an Associated Press report, Freddoso's book "sometimes includes inaccurate or incomplete information" to back the argument that Obama's record should be opposed by conservatives and moderates. The report states that "Freddoso accuses Obama of voting to raise taxes on anyone with taxable income of more than $32,500. The independent watchdog group Factcheck.org notes that provision was part of a nonbinding budget resolution that had no actual impact on tax levels, and that Obama's tax proposals do not include any such increase." According to Factcheck.org: "...Obama's March 2008 vote for a non-binding budget resolution that would have set general revenue and spending targets for congressional tax-writing and appropriations committees. The resolution does not contain a specific provision to raise tax rates, but rather assumes that most of the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts expire as scheduled in 2011. It also bears no relation to Obama's proposed economic plan." [ [http://www.factcheck.org/elections-2008/the_32000_question.html The $32,000 question Factcheck.org] ]

Writing, publishing and publicizing the book

Freddoso took a leave from his job with National Review Online to write the book. The author previously was a writer for "Human Events" and a political reporter for Robert Novak's "Evans-Novak Political Report".

The first press run of the book totaled nearly 300,000 copies, and it appeared on the August 24, 2008 New York Times Bestseller List for hardcover nonfiction at No. 5 (the list reflected sales for the week ending August 9, 2008; the "Times" stated that some book stores reported receiving bulk orders). [New York Times Bestseller list, [http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/24/books/bestseller/besthardnonfiction.html?_r=1&oref=slogin "Hardcover Nonfiction"] , August 24, 2008, accessed August 19, 2008] Publicity for the book is handled by the conservative public relations firm Creative Response Concepts, headed by former Republican political official Greg Mueller. Creative Response Concepts also organized publicity for "Unfit for Command" by John O'Neill and Jerome Corsi, and for the 527 group Swift Boat Veterans for Truth during the 2004 United States presidential election.

Notes

External links

* [http://www.regnery.com/books/obama.html Official web page for the book] at Regnery Publishing Co.
* [http://www.caseagainstbarackobama.com CaseAgainstBarackObama.com] , the book's website (within "Human Events" website), as promoted within the book


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