Inside, the NYT points out that Sen. Barack Obama is getting attacked from all sides as part of the “customary greeting that the political tribe accords to apparent front-runners.” His advisers apparently discuss every day which attacks to answer in order to strike the right balance between not sounding defensive while also emphasizing that Obama won’t run away from a fight. Well, at least they’ll have nothing to worry about from today’s front pages as both the NYT and LAT carry largely positive stories about the senator from Illinois. The LAT takes a look at the “surprising number” of “Obamacans,” which is the way that Obama describes Republicans who are supporting his candidacy. Many are skeptical that these Republicans will stick with Obama until the general election. But the paper talks to a small group of Republicans who insist that they’ve found their candidate and are working to convince other lifelong Republicans to join them.
Meanwhile, the NYT fronts a look at the “hushed worry” of many Obama supporters who fear he will be assassinated if he wins, or gets close to winning, the presidency. Leave aside the obvious question of whether this sort of high-profile story could give anyone any ideas and the fact that by mentioning Obama in the same breath with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Sen. Robert Kennedy, the NYT is successfully raising the candidate’s mythic stature, but are these fears really “hushed”? As the paper mentions, his supporters mention the fears “without prompting,” the Times itself has written about it before, a TV reporter famously asked Sen. Ted Kennedy about it, it’s clearly a favorite topic of conversation around the Internet, and the phrase “assassinate Obama” even made it on the list of the top 100 Google search terms early last month.
The WP goes inside with a look at how both Obama and Sen. Hillary Clinton have changed positions on a number of issues. Some changes are subtle and more a question of nuance, but on some issues, “both candidates are saying things that are quite different from their previous positions.” The paper outlines what it considers to be each candidate’s top five “flip-flops.”
The Post‘s Sebastian Mallaby writes that despite Obama’s oft-used phrase that “what’s lacking right now is not good ideas,” there are some important issues about which “good ideas are actually quite scarce.” Mallaby points to global warming as an issue where there’s a particular shortage of good ideas, and says it seems strange that Obama “should dismiss the importance of fresh thinking this way: He is an intellectual, he is beloved by intellectuals, and yet he poses as an anti-intellectual.”