The announcement on January 16, 2007 by Illinois Senator Barack Obama that he had established an exploratory committee preparatory to seeking the Democratic nomination for President in 2008 came as a shock to nobody. After just two years on the national stage, following eight years in the Illinois legislature, Obamas political rise has been meteoric. When the 45-year-old officially announces his candidacy in Springfield, Illinois on February 10, he will be the USAs first credible black presidential candidate.
A reach that could encompass the White House seemed extremely unlikely when Obama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, on 4 August 1961. The son of two University of Hawaii students, his father, Barack Obama Sr, was a Kenyan immigrant; his mother, Ann Dunham, hailed from Wichita, Kansas. As Obama described them in his early memoirs, Dreams From My Father, his father was black as pitch, my mother white as milk. The mixed marriage didnt last long. When Obama was two his parents divorced and his father returned to Kenya. Four years later his mother remarried and moved with her son to her new husbands homeland in Malaysia; four years after that Obama returned to Hawaii to live with his maternal grandparents. He remained there until graduating high school in 1979.
Obama majored in political science at Columbia University, graduating in 1983. Afterward he worked in Chicago as the director of Developing Communities Project, a non-profit which assisted local churches in establishing job training programs for low income residents. Obama enrolled in Harvard Law School in 1988, and entered the national spotlight in 1990 when he became the first Africa American editor of the Harvard Law Review. He received his Juris Doctor degree magna cum laude in 1991, then returned to Chicago where he worked for a civil rights law firm and taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School.
Obama married Michelle Robinson, an attorney, in 1992; the couple have two daughters, Malia, aged 7, and Sasha, aged 5.
Obamas political career began in 1996 with his election to the Illinois legislature as State Senator from Chicagos 13th district. In 2000 he made an unsuccessful bid for the US House of Representatives, losing in the primary to the incumbent. During his time in the Illinois Senate Obama was noted for his ability to reach across the aisle to Republicans, and build coalitions to further his legislative agenda. In 2004 he won the Illinois Democratic primary to become a candidate for the US Senate seat being vacated by retiring Peter Fitzgerald. Obama took 52% of the vote in a three-way split. Initially opposed by Republican Jack Ryan, the latter withdrew from the race in June following a sex scandal, and was replaced by perennial GOP presidential candidate Alan Keyes.
That July during the campaign, Obama gave the keynote speech at the Democratic National Convention in Boston which nominated John Kerry for president. The prime-time speech signaled Obamas national debut, and he made a clarion call for national unity which was received with a rousing ovation:
The pundits like to slice-and-dice our country into Red States and Blue States; Red States for Republicans, Blue States for Democrats. But I've got news for them, too. We worship an awesome God in the Blue States, and we don't like federal agents poking around in our libraries in the Red States. We coach Little League in the Blue States and yes, weve got some gay friends in the Red States. There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq and patriots who supported the war in Iraq. We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America.
Not since John F. Kennedy had the Democrats found such an orator, able to inspire and animate his audience.
Obama became a national sensation virtually overnight, and returned to Illinois to a resounding victory over Keyes that November, 70%-27%. Even before his swearing-in the following January, he was being spoken of as a presidential contender for 2008. In 2005 TIME Magazine included him in a group of 20 of the worlds most influential people, while the New Statesman named him as one of ten people who could change the world.
In barely two years in the US Senate, Obama has co-sponsored legislation with GOP stalwarts John McCain, his potential 2008 rival, on immigration, and Richard Lugar on nonproliferation; as well as signing on to a host of lesser legislation sponsored by both Democrats and Republicans. Throughout, his national visibility has been increasing exponentially, with a new autobiography, The Audacity of Hope, and an appearance on "The Oprah Winfrey Show." National polls of Democrats show him running second only to Hillary Clinton in their preference for a 2008 presidential candidate.
Barack Obamas natal chart shows a considerable Deep Space emphasis. His Leo Sun serves him well; like Bill Clinton, another Leo and the last successful Democrat nationally, Obama has the gift of relating to people without talking down to them. But at 12 Leo that Sun has some issues, galactically speaking. Conjoined a Maser at 13 Leo and exactly opposed a Black Hole at 12 Aquarius, Obamas Sun is torn between two powerful anomalies which he seems to have made work for him up to this point, but which can be difficult in the extreme to negotiate successfully in the long term.
It is the Maser which gives Obama his Rock Star persona, sending waves of excitement and anticipation through the crowds at his public appearances. Masers are powerful but difficult to control. They can be likened to cosmic cattle prods, spewing huge jets of energy and material into space at irregular intervals. They promote excited, agitated states, and can lead to breakdown due to energy bursts so volatile that they result in burnout. Obamas use of this potential disabling energy has been extremely successful so far, but the unique pressures of running a national campaign will put him under unprecedented stress, and how he will handle this is not at all certain.
The opposition from the Sun to a Black Hole enables Obama to be somewhat chameleon-like, being all things to all people, allowing them to see whatever they want in him. The tricky thing about Black Hole Sun natives is that they will adapt themselves to their audience, appearing in whatever projection or pose they require to attain their ends. This isnt always deceptive; in fact, it often isnt done consciously, but is a natural outworking of the interaction of the Sun, the self or essence, with the kaleidoscope of potential expressed by the Black Hole. The associated Black Hole psychically feeds on the energy attracted by its projection via the medium of the Sun; the better the projection is fine-tuned to its audience, the more energy the Black Hole stands to receive. This adaptive mechanism does not require the conscious participation, and thus culpability, of the native to manifest. This can be especially true of the opposition aspect, which due to its nature, tends to mirror others expectations even more strongly than a conjunction or other aspects.
Obamas popularity will likely increase until he is forced to take definite stands on specific issues. Until that time, he will continue to attract a broad base of support. But Obama isnt actually the blank slate that others may wish to paint uponhe has very definite views and aspirations, and once announced, these may or may not serve the furtherance of his goals. Black Hole Suns are also magnetic, pulling others into their orbits almost effortlessly. For good or ill; he is likely to attract support easily.
Obamas Sun is also squared to Neptune which, at 8 Scorpio, is itself conjoined a Black Hole at 6 Scorpio. This lends Obama a certain degree of glamour and what is known as "star quality," but it also opens him up to some potential self-deception, and could indicate serious issues with addiction, co-dependency or substance abuse. In Dreams From My Father, Obama is disarmingly frank about his early teen use of both marijuana and cocaine. In a clear reference to Clintons 1992 attempt to soften the implications of his drug experimentation, Obama stated: I inhaledthat was the point.
But Obama has an even bigger ace in the hole than his Black Hole Sun, and thats his Venus. At 1 Cancer, Venus is exactly squared to the supermassive Black Hole center of Galaxy M-87, also known as the Super Galactic Center, at 1 Libra. Not to be confused with the Galactic Center, the origin point of our Milky Way Galaxy, the Super Galactic Center is the central attractive point of our Local Super Cluster of galaxies, and has a mass estimated in excess of 5 billion suns. The amount of charm and grace this placement can muster is considerable, and its acquisitive prowess should go a long way toward rasing the kinds of funds necessary to mount a successful presidential campaign. It has certainly contributed to Obamas presence, his telegenic quality, and the pleasing, affable and courteous manner which defines him and adds to his public appeal.
But the Super Galactic Center isnt done there. Obamas natal Mercury at 1 Leo is in exact sextile, and his natal Jupiter at 0 Aquarius lies in a tight trine. This is the source of his highly persuasive communication style, and potentially, a great deal of luck and political savvy. Having these three points, so vital for a successful politician, yoked to the anomaly with the greatest pull in the cosmos is an inestimable asset.
Mercury is also conjoined the Black Hole at 2 Leo, and forms a T-square with a pair of opposed Quasars at 4 Taurus and Scorpio. Black Hole Mercury natives can be powerful, persuasive speakers, though they can have difficulty in getting their message heard. Obama has certainly overcome this obstacle, probably due to the linkage with the two Quasars, so useful in success and accomplishment. What results is a very sensitive and forceful communicator, one with fresh ideas from a unique perspective. The connection with alternate realities and parallel dimensions afforded by Mercurys contact with a Black Hole allows the native to see, not just the way things are, but the ways they might become. A dreamer by nature, Black Hole Mercurys conceptualizations can be birthed into this reality by the manifestation capacity of the Quasars.
There are significant Galactic Center contacts as well, which provide Obama with a high level of visibility and the ability to reach a global audience with his message, and ultimately, to impact the entire planet. Uranus from 23 Leo is in trine, with Mars at 22 Virgo squared and Saturn at 25 Capricorn in semisextile.
That Saturn also conjoins a Pulsar and squares the Black Hole at 24 Aries. Saturn/Pulsar lends a practical, efficient quality to interactions with the Media which involve career matters; Obama is likely to be canny and effective in dealing with the press, and has a natural knack for disseminating his message, particularly via high-tech, cutting-edge technologies, as indicated by the exact inconjunct between Saturn and Uranus. The square to the Black Hole could suggest an accruing of extensive executive power, and is also indicative of one who makes an impressive showing in his chosen career, but could lead to sudden mis-steps and unexpected losses.
Obamas timing so far in his presidential bid has been astrologically impressive. When the formation of the exploratory committee was announced on January 16, the transit Sun at 25 Capricorn was exactly conjoined his natal Saturn, symbol of both his career life and the presidency itself. That energy is reiterated on the date he will officially announce his candidacy, February 10, which shows a Sun/Saturn opposition in the sky from 21 Aquarius to Leo. Both Mars and Pluto clustered closely at the Galactic Center, garnering a greater-than-usual level of attention for an exploratory committee, and Mercury at 1 Aquarius conjoined his natal Jupiter and exactly squared its natal placement, again inflating his message and providing national exposure.
On Election Day 2008, November 4, Obamas nativity will be strongly tied to the transit sky. His 12 Leo Sun will conjoin the South Node at 13 Leo, and is exactly squared the Election Day Sun at 12 Scorpio, perhaps giving him a karmic edge and bringing his lifes purpose to fruition. Saturn in the sky at 18 Virgo will be closing in on his natal Mars at 22 Virgo, which is also closely sextile transit Mars at 21 Scorpio, perhaps providing a last-ditch burst of energy which could propel his campaign first across the finish line. The Moon in Capricorn on Election Day will be transiting his natal Saturn, a possible indicator of massive public support.
Obama also has three very distinct connections with the USA chart. Venus at 1 Cancer is conjoined both the USA Venus at 3 Cancer and its Jupiter at 5 Cancer, which may give him an advantage with womens support and fundraising (both Venus), and attract the nation with his political philosophy (Jupiter) of compromise and cooperation. Additionally, his Mars at 22 Virgo exactly conjoins the nations Neptune, and his Saturn at 25 Capricorn is closely conjunct the USA Pluto at 27 Capricorn. If his passion (Mars) can inspire us (Neptune), he may well attain the most powerful (Pluto) executive office (Saturn) in the world.