A reporter withheld a 2005 photo of Senator Barack Obama smiling next to Louis Farrakhan at a Congressional Black Caucus gathering until a few days ago.

The reporter said he didn’t want to hurt Obama’s political career, as we reported in Journalist Releases Photo of Obama With Farrakhan Hidden From Public Since 2005.

The photographer was interviewed on Tucker, and made it clear he was pressured to conceal the photo:

Why would hobnobbing with Farrakhan have been damaging? It’s not for people like Linda Sarsour and other fringe players.

But for a presidential candidate, there would be no denying that Farrakhan was a well-known anti-American anti-Semite and anti-White racist, and had been known as such for decades.

I covered the public knowledge of Farrakhan’s open anti-Semitism when I covered Keith Ellison’s run for DNC Chair, Keith Ellison blames “right-wing smear campaign” for his Farrakhan and Israel controversies:

The excuse that he was unaware of just what Farrakhan was just doesn’t hold up. By the time of the Million Man March in October 1995, the media had been saturated for years with criticisms of Farrakhan’s anti-white, anti-semitic rhetoric.

http://content.time.com/time/covers/0,16641,19940228,00.html

[Time Magazine Cover, February 28, 1994]

Had the Obama-Farrakhan photo been released, it would have added context to other problematic Obama connections, like Jeremiah Wright and Bill Ayers. It also might have given even greater pressure for the L.A. Times to release a tape of Obama attending a speech by anti-Israel extremist Rashid Khalidi (that tape has never been released).

The very first post at Legal Insurrection was on October 12, 2008, Obama is “Door No. 2” in which I suggested the public Obama may not be the real Obama (emphasis added):

As in Let’s Make a Deal, choosing Door No. 2 carries great risks. So does choosing Obama.

Obama may be a post-racial healer, or he may be someone who carefully uses race and false accusations of racism to advance his political career. Obama may not have known about Jeremiah Wright’s political race-baiting, or he may have known but not cared. Obama may be someone who views this country as inherently good, or he may secretly share the views of his political enabler, William Ayers, that this country is inherently bad. We may know Obama better than Jeremiah Wright and William Ayers know Obama, or we may not know Obama at all.

Obama may be everything good, or the promise Obama embodies may just be a figment of our own imagination.

Obama is the perfect vehicle for imagining hope, because he has almost no record. Obama is a blank canvas upon which we can paint our imagined hope. Obama has avoided almost every hard issue that has confronted him in his political career, choosing to vote “present” (literally or figuratively) hundreds of times.

Just about the only thing we know about Obama is what he has told us about himself. To inquire deeper invites accusations that one is a “smear merchant” and using “racially tinged subtexts.”

… I will not gamble on the presidency. I will not choose Door No. 2 by voting for Obama.

Alan Dershowitz says he never would have campaigned for Obama had he known of the Farrakhan photo:

We didn’t need the Farrakhan photo to know not to vote for Obama.

But it would have helped fill in at least one part of what was behind Door No. 2 for many other people.