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November 03, 2008

Aunti Z's Protectors

A lot of state power is being employed in favor of Obama:

ALL IN THE FAMILY

Senior aides to Sen. Barack Obama and Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick were aware that Obama's aunt, Zeituni Onyango, was living in the United States illegally and in a South Boston public-housing project, and were monitoring her at the request of senior Obama campaign officials, according to a current employee for Obama's key political consulting firm, AKP&D Message and Media.

Back in early 2007, as Obama's chief campaign strategist David Axelrod was organizing and planning the Obama campaign, he identified Obama's unique family situation -- a number of half-brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, some living overseas -- as a potential problem, says an employee for Axelrod's political consulting firm, and who has done work on the Obama campaign. "Given [Obama's] father's family history here and in Africa, David wanted the campaign to know who was who, where they lived, and what they were doing. No surprises. We knew she was here illegally. We knew her income levels, but I don't think anyone from the campaign had had contact with her."

Instead, according to the source, Axelrod reached out to his former client, Patrick, who had retained Axelrod's firm for his run for governor. Onyango was living in a state-funded housing project, "so Patrick's people could just as easily keep track of things, and could do it without drawing a ton of attention," says the AKP&D Message and Media employee, who requested anonymity as he hopes to get a job in an Obama administration should the candidate win. "If we had Obama people around, the media would probably have found her much sooner. She was in [Obama's] book, it wasn't like she couldn't be found." Indeed, that is exactly how the London Times found her.

While the South Boston housing project is managed by the Boston Housing Authority, it is a state-funded facility, according to the BHA press office, and so it would not be uncommon for state housing officials to be on the grounds or in the area. "Patrick was the go-between, he's trusted by David and Senator Obama," says the aide.

Anyone see a pattern here?

Oh well, at least we have a vigilant and courageous press to patrol abuses of power by government officials.

Thanks to J. Geoff.


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posted by Ace at 03:14 PM

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