Chicago Sun-Times
The scoop from Washington

Obama’s jumping in presidential politics. That is the French presidential race. Gave photo op to French presidential contender Sarkozy.


Sen. Barack Obama picks and chooses what he wants out on his public schedule, so it is interesting to see he is giving a boost to French Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy.

Obama is meeting this afternoon with Sarkozy--a leading French presidential candidate from the ruling conservative party in that country’s 2007 balloting to replace President Jacques Chirac.

After the private meeting, Obama will host a ``brief press availability’’ and photo op at his suite in the Hart Senate Office Building. The minister and Obama just completed trips to Africa.

The German press service Deutsche Press-Agenteur reported that Sarkozy’s U.S. trip was getting him in trouble back home with Socialist Party rivals because his taxpayer funded travel ``could aid him in his future presidential campaign.’’ A party spokesman called for Chirac to put an end to his travels.

The AP reported that Sarkozy is a student of American campaigns and he may get some ideas in meetings with Obama and the popular Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), mulling a 2008 second run for the White House.

From the AP ``Sarkozy has borrowed many ideas from American politics. He is an avid capitalist, he favors affirmative action, and his "zero tolerance" policy about crime mimics that of former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani. These positions make him one of the most divisive figures in French politics.''

Sarkozy met with UN Secretary General Kofi Anan and then with American Jewish leaders in New York before coming to Washington and the New York Sun reported that ``For the past three years, since the outbursts of anti-Semitism in France caught the attention of Americans, Mr. Chirac and his foreign ministers have touched base regularly with Jewish groups in New York, Washington, and Paris.

But the French political class has long portrayed the Jewish lobby as a malignant influence on American policy.
"I am a friend of America. I am a friend of Israel," Mr. Sarkozy, the head of the conservative party Union for a Popular Movement, said.’’


How is this Bozo giving him a boost? How? Tell me! He hasnt done ANYTHING of substance since being elected to the Senate. No wonder the French would ove him. They probably surrendered to him. has announced results from news coverage of the upcoming ’06.

Election, showing Republican candidates in the lead with 62% of news media mentions referring to Republicans and 38% referring to Democrats. To learn more see our press release with our complete results here:

It's pretty interesting, seeing as Sarkozy is a fixture of the political Right in France. Granted, the French Right is almost Left-of-Center here, but Sarkozy's UMP has almost zero support among France's minority population and Sarkozy's remarks are widely seen to have been the catalyst for last year's riots in the suburbs. Interesting to see how Obama might affect (if at all) Sarkozy's standing in France, given that Obama's name recognition is pretty small, and Sarkozy is widely considered a lock for the Right's nomination in next year's presidential balloting.

DId he say anything interesting at the event?

LYNN SWEET REPLY....I did get to the joint appearence....I was jammed today, Max, but till try to update this item....later...

I loath such negative and unproductive comments. It is very obvious that the last poster has no clue about world politics other than the stupid "TV Rhetoric" circulating amongst predatory right wingers in this country.

Obama is a GoodWill ambassador for the United States -- something this country has in short supply right now, and will with time make his mark in America's political landscape.

My goodness, this fascination either you or your bosses have with Obama is absolutely sickening. Has he been a senator 2 years yet? Whats he done? What did he do as a state senator?

The visit by French Prime Minister Sarkozy to Sen.Obama is yet another sign that Sen.Obama has arrived as a major player in international relations.

Keep up the good work Senator Obama. America-France rapprochement c'est tres bonne.

Warning: Barack's Missing the Real Intelligence on Sarkozy!!

Once Again, reader Lenny J. has missed the forest for the trees, BUT has actually touched on something important without realizing the real significance of what he is actually opening up for discussion!!!!!!

SARKOZY IS THE MOST PRO-BUSH-CHENEY politician in Europe as of this moment!!! His own leader, Jacques Chirac of France, has SEVERELY distanced himself from Bush-Cheney!! And the Cheney-Bush Dandy Cheerleader from the United Kingdom, the man whose trumpet sound is fading fast, Tony Blair, has recently been giving equal opportunity Bronx Cheers both at home and abroad-- he was booed out of Lebanon, and returned home to be booed out of the Labor Party affiliated Trade Union Conference!! So, Slippery Nick Sarkozy has come over to the US to "embrace" the TOTALLY DISCREDITED BUSH-CHENEY NEO-CON AGENDA.

So two observations:

1. I Don't Think Sen. Obama would want to in any, way, shape or form want it to be known, publically Or PRIVATELY that he has any sympathies for this crowd!!!!!!!! Say, it ain't so, Barack!!!

2. Reader Lenny J. may have cause for celebration that the Bush-Cheney crowd have a secret sympathizer in Senator Obama- who may be letting his ambitions run a tad ahead of his principles. In that case, I'm sure Sen. Obama will get a lot of media attention to his "new-found " agreements with the Bush-Cheney crowd.

One would hope that this meeting with Sarkozy was nothing more than a courtesy call and not to be viewed with any suspicion of dirty deals in the works. As they say on TV, only Sen. Obama knows for sure!!!

Gerald Pechenuk

Sen obama is once again showing his inexperience are we talking of the same Nicolas Sarkozy the Minister of the Interior and Town and County Planning,who has staked out the right of the political field, excelling at outrageous macho statements, all in an attempt to curry favour with the white racist vote. (Sarkozy pledges police crackdown after riots in Paris, The Guardian, Tuesday November 1, 2005)competing with
the Franch far right – in the country of Jean-Marie Le Pen – and has long been a strategy of all kinds of bourgeois politicians to try and win votes from these fascists by trying to outdo them at their own game (what has been called the “lepenization of the mind��?). Perhaps in this vein, in June Sarkozy provoked public outcry when he promised to give the suburb of La Courneuve (in Seine-Saint-Denis) the "Karcher treatment". Just a week befor ethe events discussed here he referred to local youths as "thugs" and "trash" when he visited Argenteuil (Val-d'Oise), another Parisian suburb. (Clichy-sous-Bois: Nicolas Sarkozy seul en première ligne, le Nouvel Observateur, November 1st 2005) well done Mr senetor

John Welcome home. Your right here not much. He did get 50 million for homeless vets and he helped returning troops that had problems with the VA I sent him. But his record in the Senate is not much.

Dale you wanna be nobody. You got nothing from Obama. All you do is follow liberals like Obama and Cegalis around and they pretend to like you pat you on the head like a poodle ,you think your important and when you leave they all make jokes about you. Just like everyone else you know. You endorsed Cegalis over picked a left wing nut over a wounded vet! WOW!

Dale give it a rest you windbag. All you do is say how your represent vets and your endorsing Cegalis in a democratic primary? Your a real piece of work, Ive read what other Vets wrote about you and none of it is favorable.

Lenny is a liar again Duff Cegalis had to pull that indorcement it was never made by me or the Veterans For Progress IL. no vet has ever writen a word about me or my org. Windbag liar. If you think for one minute I will be swiftboated by to Republican Operatives you are mistaken. I go to congress with Jim Wideman and tell your buddy who said the only veteran is a wounded veteran Steve Buyer that veterans will no longer put up with people like you and him. Lenny an Duff where did you serve or are you like Hannity and just run your paid for mouths

I read where dome special forces guys called you out Dale. Guys like you are frauds. You think you are famouse because Rham ppats you on the head like a dog. Wow the rest of us vets (who have never heard of your group) dont care.

Duff no one ever called me out again you lie. Second I have nothing to do with Rham. Our veterans Org. is all over the country just put in your search engine Veterans For Progress and I don't care what you think you support the people who cut our benefits. That make you a non-bother and vets will know that. Get help you need it.

Dale you are a self indulged windbag. I currently have alot of friends who are vets who cant believe what you say.You said Hastert deals drugs in Turkey! Dale you have no credibility until you recant that statement! NO WONDER NO ONE TAKES YOU SERIOUSLY!

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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