The Drudge Report has in it’s banner headline a picture of Barack Obama dressed in traditional Somali Elder clothing with the headline, “Clinton Staffers Circulate ‘Dressed’ Obama.” In the story they never name the source of the picture, and only call them “stressed Clinton staffers.” The photo was taken in 2006 when Senator Obama was on a five country trip through Africa. The article has one staffer denying the Clinton camp had anything to do with this, and it even shows pictures of Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush in funny foreign clothes too. But the headline, which is the only part most people see, clearly indicate that Clinton is up some kind of dirty tricks. And just in case you weren’t sure if it was a dirty trick by the Clinton campaign, Obama’s camp fired out a statement just to reassure you. David Phouffe, Obama’s campaign manager, released this statement on the picture;
â€œOn the very day that Senator Clinton is giving a speech about restoring respect for America in the world, her campaign has engaged in the most shameful, offensive fear-mongering weâ€™ve seen from either party in this election. This is part of a disturbing pattern that led her county chairs to resign in Iowa, her campaign chairman to resign in New Hampshire, and itâ€™s exactly the kind of divisive politics that turns away Americans of all parties and diminishes respect for America in the world,
So a real picture of Obama on a real trip to Africa dressed in traditional garb is “offensive fear-mongering?” Even though there is no real evidence that this came from the Clinton camp, Phouffe used it as an opportunity to attack Clinton.
Maggie Williams, Clinton’s campaign manager responded to this by saying;
â€œIf Barack Obama’s campaign wants to suggest that a photo of him wearing traditional Somali clothing is divisive, they should be ashamed. Hillary Clinton has worn the traditional clothing of countries she has visited and had those photos published widely.”
â€œThis is nothing more than an obvious and transparent attempt to distract from the serious issues confronting our country today and to attempt to create the very divisions they claim to decry.”
â€œWe will not be distracted.â€
For the most part the picture is showing up on right wing web sites like the Drudge Report, Politico, and Fox News. Another double attack by the right wingers on the Democrats in disguise. Release and spread the photo that looks damming to xenophobe voters across the country and then blame Clinton for releasing it. Obama fell for the bait, and took it. This all just plays on the Hillary Haters and Obama Maniacs emotions. Creates divisions where there really weren’t any. Meanwhile the right wing attack machine just sits back and smiles. Brilliant!