Obama’s Fading Smile

The man whose ingratiating smile launched a thousand delegates may not be so friendly after all. Here’s Karl Rove in an upcoming GQ interview:

Barack Obama is coolly detached and very arrogant. I think he’s very smart and knows he’s smart, but as a result doesn’t do his homework.

Rove may well have a slew of ulterior motives in trash-talking Obama. But in this week’s New York magazine, John Heilmann claims that after leaving the primary race John Edwards was all set to endorse Obama—until they got together for a policy chat:

Obama blew it. Speaking to Edwards on the day he exited the race, Obama came across as glib and aloof. His response to Edwards’s imprecations that he make poverty a central part of his agenda was shallow, perfunctory, pat. Clinton, by contrast, engaged Edwards in a lengthy policy discussion. Her affect was solicitous and respectful. When Clinton met Edwards face-to-face in North Carolina ten days later, her approach continued to impress; she even made headway with Elizabeth [Edwards]. Whereas in his Edwards sit-down, Obama dug himself in deeper, getting into a fight with Elizabeth about health care, insisting that his plan is universal (a position she considers a crock), high-handedly criticizing Clinton’s plan (and by extension Edwards’s) for its insurance mandate.

Heilmann quotes a Hillary insider who admits that “Elizabeth hates her guts.” Edwards’ ambivalence speaks volumes.

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Obama’s Fading Smile

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