Obama and the Annenberg Files: The Mystery Deepens

When running in the primaries Obama pointed to one of his very, very few legislative endeavors and then -- in his post partisan, post-racial mode --posed as someone who championed it:

"It's no secret that most Americans think the country is on the wrong track," Obama told the group. "But the reason isn't just failed policies. It's a system in Washington that has failed the American people. A system that has not kept the most fundamental trust of American democracy: that our government is of the people, and that it must govern for all the people - not just the interests of the wealthy and well-connected."

It's a decent, good government position to advance, but there's nothing in the record of the candidate or his close associates to suggest that what they want is to lift the curtain on the doings of others while keeping their own activities hidden behind the screen.

His record for opaqueness was clear early on in the campaign. He tried to hide who managed his Pac -- Hopefund -- which received money from lobbyists, and when he finally stopped stonewalling it was evident that the PAC was being used to advance his presidential ambitions. Nor was he open about campaign events with his most generous donors.

The latest example of the lengths Obama and his associates have gone to keep whatever still extant records of his early life from reaching the public involves the failed Chicago Annenberg Challenge records, -- virtually the only records of his pre-US Senate career not claimed to be missing or destroyed.

In 2001, the Chicago Annenberg Challenge (CAC) turned over its records to the University of Illinois Chicago's (UIC) Richard J. Daley library. The records are of value because they document the close working relationship Obama had with domestic terrorist leader and "bomb designer" William Ayres. They also demonstrate that Obama failed at the one executive position he ever held, chairman of the board of the CAC. And they reveal how the charitable funds donated to improve the public education of Chicago schoolchildren were used to fund extreme radicals like Ayers and Maoist Mike Klonsky.

Last month when National Review reporter Stanley Kurtz tried to review the files, the university blocked that request -- ostensibly to review the terms of the record gift. That explanation may not be fully correct, however. A third year law student, Jason Wilcox, made a Freedom of Information request to which he received a response. That reply reveals that Kenneth Rolling, the CAC's former executive director and associate of Barack Obama, contacted the university and induced them initially to refuse Kurtz' request.

Rolling claims he saw references to the Annenberg files on the internet on August 11 and immediately contacted university officials asking them to withhold "confidential" information like social security and credit card numbers.

But did he?