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National Review Online writer Stanely Kurtz has been tireless in his efforts to vet Barack Obama. His work in exposing the president’s associations with radical leftists, despite solid evidence, has been dismissed as the efforts of a “right-wing hatchet man” or ignored altogether by a willfully oblivious mainstream media.
In 2008, Kurtz was hammered as someone “pushing a new crackpot smear” by Obama campaign website, Fight the Smears, for a column revealing that Mr. Obama “had been a member of, and endorsed by the hard-left New Party.” He further noted that the New Left “functioned as the electoral arm of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN).” In a piece published yesterday, Kurtz produced the proverbial smoking gun tying the president to the New Party.
“Recently obtained evidence from the updated records of Illinois ACORN at the Wisconsin Historical Society now definitively establishes that Obama was a member of the New Party,” Kurtz writes. “He also signed a ‘contract’ promising to publicly support and associate himself with the New Party while in office.”
Kurtz then produced minutes of a meeting held on January 11, 1996 by the New Party’s Chicago chapter:
“Barack Obama, candidate for State Senate in the 13th Legislative District, gave a statement to the membership and answered questions. He signed the New Party ‘Candidate Contract’ and requested an endorsement from the New Party. He also joined the New Party.”
When the original story broke in 2008, Obama campaign spokesman Ben LaBolt denied the president had ever been a member of the organization. Fight the Smears echoed that contention, declaring that:
“the truth is Barack has been a member of only one political party, the Democratic Party. In all six primary campaigns of his career, Barack has has run as a Democrat. The New Party did support Barack once in 1996, but he was the only candidate on the ballot in his race and never solicited the endorsement.”
Politico blogger Ben Smith piled on as well. “Popping up in my inbox lately, and on some conservative blogs, is the allegation that Barack Obama was once a member of the Communist/Socialist/secretive/
Rogers debunked the idea that Barack Obama was a member, contending that the new Party “didn’t really have members.” That contention was “updated” in a subsequent email, when Rogers explained that the New Party had “no formal membership structure in the usual party sense of members, with people registering with election boards for primary and other restrictive elections…We did have regular supporters whom many called ‘members,’ but it just meant contributing regularly…Anyway, [Obama] certainly wasn’t either. He was just a good candidate whom we endorsed.”
Smith noted that La Bolt also denied Mr. Obama was a member of the organization. Thus, his entire “investigation” consisted of taking two Obama supporters at their word, something that was apparently sufficient evidence for a mainstream media that never pursued the issue any further.
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