Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Ken Adelman For Obama?!

The old saying that "politics makes strange bedfellows" never had truer meaning than the endorsement of Barack Obama by Ken Adelman. The self-described "con-con" has right-wing Republican credentials going back many years. From the New Yorker's George Packer:

Ken Adelman is a lifelong conservative Republican. Campaigned for Goldwater, was hired by Rumsfeld at the Office of Economic Opportunity under Nixon, was assistant to Defense Secretary Rumsfeld under Ford, served as Reagan’s director of arms control, and joined the Defense Policy Board for Rumsfeld’s second go-round at the Pentagon, in 2001. Adelman’s friendship with Rumsfeld, Cheney, and their wives goes back to the sixties, and he introduced Cheney to Paul Wolfowitz at a Washington brunch the day Reagan was sworn in.

In recent years, Adelman and his friends Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Wolfowitz fell out over his criticisms of the botching of the Iraq War. Still, he remains a bona-fide hawk (“not really a neo-con but a con-con”) who has never supported a Democrat for President in his life. Two weeks from now that’s going to change: Ken Adelman intends to vote for Barack Obama. He can hardly believe it himself.

Why is he voting for Obama? Temperament and judgment. For his explanation, click here for the rest of Packer's post.

Postscript: In a separate post Adelman had this to say about experience and the McCain campaign's scorched earth tactics:

The Republican handling of the war made me value “experience” far less. If Cheney, Rumsfeld & Powell are the epitome of experience, I’ll take the alternative. They’ve given experience a bad name.

Further thought: McCain’s campaign soured me a lot. His hiring of the Bush attack squad, South Carolina 2000, made me view this honorable man as heading a dishonorable effort. And that’s still the case. It’s pretty disgusting, what he’s doing...

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