John McCain takes another poke at Barack Obama’s “citizen of the world” speech in Berlin last week, not by criticizing what Obama said but what he failed to mention. In running through a laundry list of cities and nations, Obama never once made mention of Latin America. McCain drives the point home in Spanish, but I’ll give you a break and provide the translation:
CHYRON: The World According To Barack Obama
BARACK OBAMA: Tonight I speak to you not as a candidate for President, but as a citizen; a proud citizen of the United States and a fellow citizen of the world.
CHYRON: But Entire Nations Were Forgotten!
BARACK OBAMA: France, Berlin, Hamburg, Britain, Kandahar, London, Rwanda, Iran, Bangladesh…
CHYRON: Where Was Latin America Left?
BARACK OBAMA: Karachi, Beijing, the former Soviet Union, Pakistan, Paris, Bali, Russia, Chad, Zimbabwe…
CHYRON: And Latinos?
BARACK OBAMA: Afghanistan, Somalia, Darfur, Belfast, South Africa, Madrid, Europe, Burma, Amman…
CHYRON: Maybe He Forget About Us?
McCain wants to drive home a point with Latinos about Obama’s lack of commitment to their community, but it might be a little too subtle here. McCain hasn’t yet shown any real growth from the levels of support given George Bush in 2004, and McCain expects to do better. Obama has attacked his commitment to immigration reform (as well as cast ICE agents as terrorists), but McCain wants to show that Obama only considers them as an afterthought.
The lack of mention of Latin America in a speech chock-full of references of just about everywhere else on the planet does seem a little strange. Most of these refer to hot spots, but certainly not all, unless a political crisis suddenly engulfed Paris, Berlin, and London. For that matter, where was Australia? Japan? And as a hot spot, Pyongyang is about as hot as it gets, and yet Obama failed to mention that, either.
It’s hard, being a citizen of the world, especially when pandering to large swaths of it. He may have needed a longer speech.