Skip to comments.Obama to leave campaign trail for ailing grandmother
Posted on 10/21/2008 1:50:27 AM PDT by LisaAnne
WEST PALM BEACH, Florida (Reuters) - Democrat Barack Obama will leave the presidential campaign trail to visit his ailing 85-year-old grandmother in Hawaii, whose health has deteriorated in recent weeks, an aide said on Monday.
With two weeks left in an intense battle for the White House, Obama will hold a campaign event in Indianapolis on Thursday and then fly to Hawaii to see his grandmother before returning to campaigning on Saturday, aide Robert Gibbs said.
"Senator Obama's grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, has always been one of the most important people in his life," Gibbs said in a statement.
"Along with his mother and his grandfather, she raised him in Hawaii from the time he was born until the moment he left for college."
The campaign interruption comes as both candidates head into a final sprint for the November 4 election. Obama criticized Republican White House rival John McCain for a "say-anything, do-anything" political style as he launched a two-day tour to kick off early voting in Florida.
McCain told supporters in Missouri that "nothing is inevitable" and he could still beat Obama, who leads in national opinion polls as the pair began a frenzied race to the finish line.
Obama's former Democratic rival, New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, joined the Illinois senator at a rally of 50,000 people in Orlando.
"In the final days of campaigns, the say-anything, do-anything politics too often takes over," Obama said. "We've seen it before. Hillary has been subject to it before.
"We're seeing again today -- ugly phone calls, misleading mail and TV ads, careless, outrageous statements -- all aimed at keeping us from working together, all aimed at stopping change," he said.
Obama noted McCain's running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, told reporters on Sunday that if she called the shots she would end the automated phone calls being made by McCain's campaign, including some that link Obama with 1960s radical Bill Ayers.
"You have to work really hard to violate Gov. Palin's standards on negative campaigning," Obama said.
McCain defended the calls, shrugging off Palin's remarks in an interview to be aired on Tuesday morning.
"Well, Sarah is a maverick," McCain told CBS' "Early Show." "That robocall is absolutely accurate and by the way, Senator Obama's campaign is running robocalls as we speak."
Florida a battleground
Obama planned to spend two days in Florida to encourage voters to cast their ballots early in the battleground state, which has 27 electoral votes and is vital for either candidate in their quest for the 270 electoral votes needed to win the White House.
Standing on stage next to Obama, Clinton highlighted the financial crisis as she urged Florida voters to choose Obama.
"Now is the time to close the deal for Barack Obama and close the book on eight years of failed Republican leadership," she said, linking McCain to President George W. Bush.
"Sending the Republicans to clean up the economic mess in Washington is like sending the bull to clean up the china closet." It was the third time Clinton and Obama have campaigned together since he clinched the Democratic nomination in June.
A Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby poll showed Obama with a 6-point edge on McCain. A new CNN poll gave Obama a 5-point lead among likely voters, down from an 8-point edge two weeks ago. Other polls also showed a tightening race.
At a rally outside Kansas City, Missouri, McCain jumped on comments from Obama's running mate, Delaware Sen. Joe Biden, that Obama would be tested with an international crisis within six months of becoming president.
"We don't want a president who invites testing from the world at a time when our economy is in crisis and Americans are already fighting in two wars," McCain said.
"Senator Obama won't have the right response, and we know that because we've seen the wrong response from him over and over during this campaign."
Obama touted his endorsement from Republican former Secretary of State Colin Powell.
"He will have a role as one of my advisers," Obama said on NBC's "Today" a day after earning the endorsement of Powell, who is also a retired four-star general and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
"Whether he wants to take a formal role, whether that's a good fit for him, is something we'd have to discuss."
"He will have a role as one of my advisers," Obama said on NBC's "Today" a day after earning the endorsement of Powell, who is also a retired four-star general and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.A Bush Administration official as an advisor to 0bama?
Is this development more likely to hurt him because it takes him away from campaigning, or more likely to help him because of a sympathy vote?
Um, not very compassionate of you. It’s one thing to bash Obama, but when his relative is gravely ill, that’s another matter. This site is better than that.
Ever had a parent or grandparent seriously ill ? Do you really think you’d be thinking about how their illness would be good for your career ? This is one area - illness of an opposing candidate’s relative, that should be offlimits.
Couple of paragraphs from an Andy Martin email I received this AM:
Before my team left for Hawai’i I predicted we would bring down Obama. By sheer coincidence, one TV network was interested in my mission and has been tagging along with a camera crew.
Monday (today) we petitioned the Hawai’i Supreme Court to order Obama’s secret birth records released.
How did Obama respond? He suddenly discovered that his grandmother, who had supposedly been released from her hospital a week ago, when he showed no interest in her, needed his immediate attention. Cool, calm, collected Obama suddenly suspended his campaign and headed for Hawai’i.
EMERGENCY PETITION FOR WRIT OF MANDAMUS
INTRODUCTION AND PRELIMINARY STATEMENT
The question of the authenticity and public availability of the birth certificate of Senator Barack Obama (hereinafter “Obama”) has become a source of increasing embarrassment for Hawai’i Government.
Although Obama has purportedly posted a copy of his birth certificate on his own web site, and others claim to have posted other versions, Obama refuses to allow public access to the official records of the State of Hawaii.
Petitioner is an author and columnist who came to Hawai’i to do research on Obama’s years in Hawai’i. After arriving in Honolulu, Petitioner decided he needed a copy of the original birth certificate, as well as any official files relating to the issuance of said certificate.
The Executive Branch Department of Health has repeatedly and egregiously mischaracterized the Hawai’i statute governing access to birth certificates, and did so again on October 17th in a statement to the Honolulu Advertiser.
Petitioner applies to this Court for an appropriate writ, and offers two separate avenues of potential relief for the Court to consider.
I thought his small town values mother, who was raised in Kansas and as a single mother on food stamps often struggled to make ends meet, was the one who raised him.
No-one and i mean no one leaves a presidential race with 2 wks to go, i dont care how sick she is, theres more to this, funny how its the same time Andy Martin is about to drop the bomb on his eligibility in HAWAII.
Everything happens for a reason. At this late date don't be naive. http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2110955/posts
His mother lived in Indonesia while he was raised by his grandparents in Hawaii at the age of ten.
By the way, television reports say that she is close to death.
The lack of compassion here on this matter is very, very, sad. Again, this is one issue that should be off-limits.
Television reports say she’s close to death. So you’re saying the grandmother is plotting her death just to help his career ? That is insane.
Exactly what I was thinking. Gosh, I hate being so cynical.
I think people like Obama would use anyone to advance their vision of reigning over the impoverished masses. Everyone is a tool to socialist, elitist, narcissistic, and probably genocidal, sociopaths like him.
Gov. Lingle and Gov. Palin are very close and talk with each other often.
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF HAWAII SUPREME COURT DOCKET NUMBER: 29414 ANDY MARTIN, Petitioner, HON. LINDA LINGLE, in her official capacity as Governor; DR. CHIYOME FUKINO, in her official capacity as Director of the Department of Health, HON. BERT AYABE, in his official capacity as Circuit Judge, Respondents.
He’s pointing out Obama’s faults, not his grandmother’s. Fair game.
Well he isn’t in any big rush to get there. He throws this news out on a Monday night about a late Thursday trip?
If she was that seriously ill...he should be on a plane as we speak and not waiting 96 hours to leave after a bunch of rallies.
Obama cannot be allowed to win. One of weaknesses of the campaign against him so far has been that too many things have been “off limits”. Obama is the worst candidate for the Presidency this country has ever seen. He needs to be hit very hard, continually, on every front.
Reports are that she is very close to death, yet he can’t get there to see her until later in the week. As I understand it, he has only seen her once in the last 20 months, and you want to talk to me about my lack of compassion?
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