The main reason that the McCain campaign has failed to get any traction on its “palling around with terrorists” line tying Obama to Bill Ayers is that it seems like ancient history to many voters. Obama has repeatedly reminded everyone that he was only 8 years old when Ayers was blowing up buildings. More important, as Abe mentions, he convinced them that Ayers is now an upstanding citizen who also pals around with Republicans, whatever his past. As readers of this blog surely know, Ayers is anything but. And it is Professor Ayers the “education reformer” and his influence on Barack Obama that should frighten Americans now. Stanley Kurtz and others have written about Ayers’ radical education policies–and Obama’s role in funding them–but this line of criticism has not been picked up by the McCain camp or by the general media.
Obama is now lining up his cabinet. Ron Radosh recalls that Bill Clinton’s first choice to head the Education Department was Johnetta Cole, former president of Spelman College, whose nomination was derailed only when the Forward exposed her ties to various communist front groups over the years. Cole nonetheless led Clinton’s education transition team.
Obama is too smart to put Ayers’ in a similar position, but that doesn’t mean Ayers won’t have influence. His education radicalism isn’t all that different from the multicultural agenda of groups like the National Education Association, which will play a major role in picking an Obama Secretary of Education. Make no mistake: Ayers ideas will have a place at Obama’s table.