THE BLOG

Clinton Misrepresents Obama's Professor Credentials

04/08/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Out of all the ridiculous attacks on Barack Obama in this campaign season, none quite matches the silliness and desperation of the Clinton campaign's assertion (refuted by the University of Chicago Law School) that "Sen. Obama consistently and falsely claims that he was a law professor."

Sadly, Lynn Sweet of the Chicago Sun-Times, who initially made the erroneous claim that Obama was misleading people with those words, writes today about the Clinton critique as if it had some merit.

Sweet and the Clinton campaign are just utterly wrong.

As an expert on higher education, I can tell you that anyone who teaches a college class is broadly considered a professor, and is typically called a professor by students. Calling Obama a "law professor" is a description of his job category, not his official title.

It's common for everyone to refer to teachers as professors. In fact, the Clinton campaign itself does this in a press release announcing the endorsement by California State Senator Sheila Kuehl, which declares that Kuehl "was a law professor at Loyola, UCLA and USC Law Schools...."

However, Kuehl was never a professor of law at Loyola, because this bio of her says she was only an instructor (that dirty, dirty word) there.

So, if the Clinton campaign itself refers to an instructor of law as a law professor, how can anyone take seriously their assertion that Obama is engaging in deceit by doing so?