Carter hugs Hamas, Hamas hugs ... Obama?

Just when Barack Obama’s week looked bad enough, he has to deal with winning an embarrassing endorsement from the terrorist lunatics currently being embraced by a former Democratic president. Ahmed Yousef, the political adviser for Hamas, told WABC that his group looked forward to working with Obama as president, comparing him to John F. Kennedy. Obama has to at least be thankful he didn’t get compared to Jimmy Carter:

While Sen. Barack Obama sought to improve his relationship with the Jewish community today by meeting with leaders Philadelphia, comments by a Hamas political adviser this weekend could potentially hurt the Democratic presidential candidate.

During an interview on WABC radio Sunday, top Hamas political adviser Ahmed Yousef said the terrorist group supports Obama’s foreign policy vision.

“We don’t mind–actually we like Mr. Obama. We hope he will (win) the election and I do believe he is like John Kennedy, great man with great principle, and he has a vision to change America to make it in a position to lead the world community but not with domination and arrogance,” Yousef said in response to a question about the group’s willingness to meet with either of the Democratic presidential candidates.

Yousef works directly for Ismael Haniyeh, the man who engineered the coup in Gaza.  Haniyeh and Yousef have ultimate responsibility for the rockets hitting Sderot and Ashkelon.  Most people would go far out of their way to avoid connections to these terrorists — well, most people except Jimmy Carter, of course.  When asked about Obama’s repudiation of Carter’s visit with Hamas, Yousef shrugged it off as “American politics” and expressed confidence that Haniyeh and Obama could do business together.

Obama will find this embarrassing, but not terribly problematic — or at least no more problematic than Hamas’ essays showing up in Trinity United’s church bulletins.  He didn’t seek out their endorsement; no one in their right mind would do that.  Voters will not base their decision on what Yousef thinks of Obama, nor should terrorist endorsement carry that kind of weight anyway.

Still, the optics of this comes at a bad time, with his commitment to Israel under question and his advisers working to create a PAC that pushes for conciliation and concessions to the Palestinians.   They want to cast supporters of Israel as religious zealots.  This puts them on the spot as terrorist apologists, and Obama’s connections to them make this a little more resonant than it should be.