Another response to a jmurph comment that seems worthy of a post...
in fact, what really sold me on him was an unflattering, "bubble-bursting" article in Harper's, which demonstrated to me that he seems to embody the rare paradox of a pragmatic ideologue, a man with principles who can also see the bigger picture.
I agree that it's most encouraging when Obama acts like a regular politician -- for me, his opportunistic flip-flops on issues are actually the best thing about him, because it shows he might not be an ideologue.
Unfortunately, his "pragmatic" thing is just a schtick. He talks moderate and pragmatic, but his history and voting record just don't back it up. He talks moderate, then always goes for the most liberal option available. Over and over again.
He has the most liberal voting record in the Senate. He voted with the Democratic leadership 96% of the time. This is not change, this is not a man who reaches across the aisle.
Obama is a far-left machine politician. And if that's what you want, as many do, then he's the perfect candidate.
If you are looking for "reaching across the aisle", or for bucking one's own party when they are wrong, or for sticking with unpopular positions even if they might cost you the election...well, that would be the other guy.