And the "heart and soul" bill, the one for which a legislator gives everything he or she has to get passed, has long told me more than anything else about a person's character and ability.
Consider a bill into which Obama clearly put his heart and soul. The problem he wanted to address was that too many confessions, rather than being voluntary, were coerced -- by beating the daylights out of the accused.
Obama proposed requiring that interrogations and confessions be videotaped.
This seemed likely to stop the beatings, but the bill itself aroused immediate opposition. There were Republicans who were automatically tough on crime and Democrats who feared being thought soft on crime. There were death penalty abolitionists, some of whom worried that Obama's bill, by preventing the execution of innocents, would deprive them of their best argument. Vigorous opposition came from the police, too many of whom had become accustomed to using muscle to solve" crimes. And the incoming governor, Rod Blagojevich, announced that he was against it.
Obama had his work cut out for him....
Obama didn't stop there. He played a major role in passing many other bills, including the state's first earned-income tax credit to help the working poor and the first ethics and campaign finance law in 25 years (a law a Post story said made Illinois "one of the best in the nation on campaign finance disclosure"). Obama's commitment to ethics continued in the U.S. Senate, where he co-authored the new lobbying reform law that, among its hard-to-sell provisions, requires lawmakers to disclose the names of lobbyists who "bundle" contributions for them. lots more
Hat tip to What Tami Said.
It occurs to me that I've been blogging about Obama a lot lately. It's because everyone else I know is for Hillary Clinton. I get beaten up for saying anything about it in email or at most of the women's groups where I usually post, so this blog has kind of become a much needed outlet for that topic.