Left-leaning blogger, George Allen nemesis and UVA law student Mike Stark makes it into The New York Times today for his online activities connected to Barack Obama. Seizing on the Democratic Party’s presidential candidate’s major success with online networking, Stark suggested that a group form on the candidate’s online portal to lobby him to vote against giving legal immunity to telecommunications companies that cooperated with the Bush administration’s warrantless wiretapping program. The immunity is part of an update of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA. The Senate will debate it this week.
“Obama is getting mad props for social networking,” Mr. Stark told the Times. “Why don’t we use social networking to let him know that he can’t keep elbowing his progressive base — the people who got him the nomination — away from the policy table?”
Senator Obama himself responded to the group, now up to 18,000, according to the Times. Reluctantly, he said, he will vote for FISA.
Stark feels a snub. “What we have is a stiff-arm to the progressive base, and it has really raised a question of how much of a change is this guy going to bring,” he told the Times.
Not surprisingly, some debate now focuses on whether supporters should be using the candidate’s site itself to criticize him.