Poor Obama. Just an innocent bystander who magically appeared out of Chicago.
Some Republicans seem to think Chicago politics is about brutal, slashing attacks on opponents—Al Capone with an ad budget. That’s what John Boehner was complaining about when he used the phrase in 2009 to describe the way the Obama administration was demonizing opponents of his health care bill, like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. But political aggression is hardly a distinctive Chicago trait. While American politics has never wanted for harsh negativity, the Chicago machine era predates media campaigns driven by sound bites and attack ads. The best modern exemplar of hardball politics is probably the late South Carolina political consultant Lee Atwater, who ran George H.W. Bush’s ugly 1988 presidential campaign.
So we’re not allowed to link Obama with Chicago, but this pinhead is still whining about Lee Atwater 20 years after his death.