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DC Residents Await Presidential Partner

Buried in the back pages of the DNC’s house organ, the Washington Post:

Change They Want to Believe In

Battered D.C. Awaits Arrival Of a Presidential ‘Partner’

By Richard Leiby and DeNeen L. Brown
Tuesday, December 23, 2008; C01

On the campaign trail, he was all about changing Washington. But for the most part, Barack Obama was using the symbolic shorthand that "Washington" has come to evoke: a place where powerbrokers prevail, lousy laws are made and the little people don’t really stand a chance.

What about the Washington where schools fester, the cops erect checkpoints worthy of war zones, young men gun each other down and where the bodies of four girls were found in a rowhouse guarded by their mother? An Obama administration can’t work miracles, but local activists are optimistic; they see Obama as one of their own, given his background as a community organizer.

"The last eight years, in terms of engagement, D.C. has just been a photo op for the president, or a foil," says Tommy Wells, a social worker turned D.C. Council member. "I really do believe that I have a partner in the new president, someone who understands what it means to change a city to a safe, healthy place to grow up and grow old in."

The president-elect has signaled that he will engage more forcefully than his predecessors on the city’s obvious disparities of class, color and income. "We stand not 10 miles from the seat of power in the most affluent nation on Earth," Obama said in a speech in Southeast Washington in July 2007. ". . . And yet here, on the other side of the river, every other child in Anacostia lives below the poverty line."

The then-senator made his campaign stop at a gleaming, $27 million showcase in Ward 8 called THEARC (for Town Hall Education, Arts and Recreation Campus), whose community services range from dance classes to dental care. There, Obama laid out proposals to "change the odds" for families mired in intergenerational poverty, an alternative to just hoping that some kids will "beat the odds" and emerge as miracles.

"He went to Anacostia for a reason," a presidential transition aide said last week. "He wanted to highlight the fact that he felt the federal government could play a role, specifically on intractable urban issues. . . . He and Michelle intend to be citizens of Washington, D.C." Obama’s team has not entertained "specific requests" for help, according to the aide, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he is not an authorized transition representative. But the president-elect has heard from Mayor Adrian Fenty on the city’s needs, among them jobs and repairs to bridges, roads and school buildings.

Obama couldn’t ask for a better test laboratory, a city where nearly 19 percent of the 588,000 residents struggle below the poverty line. If he were to walk the streets well beyond the inaugural route, Obama would find no shortage of people presenting petitions for what they think he must do for their Washington

Perhaps that is, in a way, a blessing for the District.

"I was just two years out of college when I first moved to the South Side of Chicago to become a community organizer," Obama said in Anacostia. ". . . Everywhere you looked, businesses were boarded up and schools were crumbling and teenagers were standing aimlessly on street corners, without jobs and without hope."

It looked a lot like parts of the city he will soon call home.

We don’t know why there should be any question about what Mr. Obama will do for the people of Washington, DC. After all, it’s not like he came from no where and has no record.

Just look at the miracles he performed when he transformed Chicago’s 13th Congressional district into a show place.

Though, good luck finding any media reports on the current (horrendous) state of Mr. Obama’s former district.

The very few video exposes have all been excised from YouTube by those masters of “net neutrality” at Google.

But we think you can guess.

(Thanks to Clarice Feldman for the heads up.)

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, December 23rd, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

9 Responses to “DC Residents Await Presidential Partner”

  1. curvyred says:

    “I really do believe that I have a partner in the new president, someone who understands what it means to change a city to a safe, healthy place to grow up and grow old in.”

    Yes, because the new president did such a wonderful job “changing” Chicago into a safe, healthy place. *sarcasm*

    Stats for Chicago paint a much different story. Oh well, why challenge them with reality?

    • curvyred says:

      And while I am my soapbox: as human beings are we not responsible for ourselves, and shouldn’t we all work to better our own communities irregardless of who is President?

  2. proreason says:

    “I really do believe that I have a partner in the new president, someone who understands what it means to change a city to a safe, healthy place to grow up and grow old in.”

    uh, did he consider maybe that they could have changed the vile, crime-ridden cesspool of a city without Obamy in the White House? Look at all the good work that former Mayor Marion Barry was able to do (just guessing at that, since I’m not a personal witness to Marion’s extraordinary achievements)

    “The president-elect has signaled that he will engage more forcefully than his predecessors on the city’s obvious disparities of class, color and income. ”

    Get ready. Here it comes!!!

  3. Gila Monster says:

    “I was just two years out of college when I first moved to the South Side of Chicago to become a community organizer,” Obama said in Anacostia. “. . . Everywhere you looked, businesses were boarded up and schools were crumbling and teenagers were standing aimlessly on street corners, without jobs and without hope.”

    What exactly did Honest Obe change about Chicago’s South Side? I was there in October on business and lo and behold, there’s still a plethora of boarded up or burned out buildings with street thugs of various ethnicity’s hanging out on every corner.

    Maybe his motto back then was “Hope to Change, But Don’t Count On It”. ;o)

    • proreason says:

      He changed his own fortunes.

      Obamy’s history is one of exploiting everything he touches for his own gain….or rather, one of his handlers manipulating everything he touches for the Socialist cause.

  4. GuppyNblue says:

    “He wanted to highlight the fact that he felt the federal government could play a role, specifically on intractable urban issues…”

    Translation – Tax the rest of the nation for this bottomless urban pit. It’s very expensive to do anything in DC (where I’m staying this week gas is still $2/gaollon – in Baltimore $1.40)) because of its own taxes. They could make it less expensive to do business by lowering them but then that would mean the crooks/politicians couldn’t get their hands on it.

    “The then-senator made his campaign stop at a gleaming, $27 million showcase in Ward 8 called THEARC”

    proreason Former Mayor Mariam Barry is a councilmember for the 8th Ward (despite his list of arrest for drug use and solicitation). I wonder if they hooked during Obama’s visit. Anyway, that’s what’s wrong with DC.

  5. proreason says:

    An arrest record seems to be a benefit in urban areas. Must be rap music working it’s wonders.

  6. eaglewingz08 says:

    If Washingtonians wanted someone to improve their city and make it safer and prosperous, the only ones who could have done that were Giuliani and Romney, and they were off the ticket. Arizona is also pretty much a free fire zone, close to Chicago in its violence. So between the two pres candidates it was pretty much a draw, although I voted for McCain, as the greater of two lessers (and for Gov Palin)


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