As we are all surely aware, Barack Obama is fronting the Democratic campaign for the White House. However, it is my strong view, that Mr Obama or Mr McCain have little to offer the US and little to offer Ireland. I find the Obama context more concerning. The radical shift of the Democrats to nominate Obama ahead of Edwards and Clinton demonstrates how much corporate lobbying has become fundamental to American politics. Many Irish people see Obama as a saviour, a new hope for the world. I beg to differ. Another common misconception is that Obama is a strong defender of the rights of immigrants, again I beg to differ. Mr Obama offers the world the following policies:
A White House that wishes to repatriate corporate taxes from American corporations operating overseas. In essence, Mr Obama is promoting a policy that will undermine the strength of European economies, more importantly it will see about the withdrawal of US companies from Ireland. A competent candidate would not attempt to de-stabalise the world economy and place hundreds of thousands of jobs at risk.
Secondly Obama is not as liberal on immigration as he claims. He voted against a Senate proposal to legalize some 20,000 Irish-American immigrants, some of whom had been resident in the US since the famine! I cannot conceive a legitimate reason for such bigotry with Obama. He is not the candidate with Socialist values - he is a puppet with quite right-wing ideals, that far outweigh his credibility as a campaigner for social justice.
John Edwards was the Socialist of the candidates - not Obama. We, as a Socialist Labour Party, should not be endorsing this man who daily contradicts our ideals. American politics is dominated by a corporate machine, by right-wing ideas and by candidates with fluffy speeches who inside are hollow people. We criticise the way by which the US government controls our economy, invades nations, abuses its workers and demonstrates little respect for social equality - why are we throwing our weight in behind a candidate who embraces the American capitalist system? This inherently contradicts our philosophy of Socialism and should never have been supported.