Nagging questions about his ties to an indicted Chicago wheeler-dealer continue to plague Senator Barack Obama's presidential campaign. Now even the New York Times is asking them, as Christopher Drew and Mike McIntyre report
Since early June, Mr. Obama has given to charity more than $21,000 in donations that his Senate campaign had received from Rezko associates now linked to the federal inquiries. He gave away $11,500 from Mr. Rezko himself last fall.
Mr. Obama says he never did any favors for Mr. Rezko, who raised about $150,000 for his campaigns over the years and was once one of the most powerful men in Illinois. There is no sign that Mr. Obama, who declined to be interviewed for this article, did anything improper.
Mr. Obama has portrayed Mr. Rezko as a one-time fund-raiser whom he had occasionally seen socially. But interviews with more than a dozen political and business associates suggest that the two men were closer than the senator has indicated.
Read the entire article at the above link. While they report there is "no sign that Mr. Obama, who declined to be interviewed for this article, did anything improper," the relationship between the two men seems to have been rather cozier than Obama would have us believe.
This presents a problem for Obama. His campaign is based on his fresh face and supposedly fresh approach to politics. Anything which clouds his pure-as-the-driven-snow image can damage his campaign, since he doesn't have a resume of experience to tout and depends upon that image. If he begins to be perceived as another typical politician, why would anyone support him for President?