The University of Chicago Law School—an institution noted for its conservative leanings—tried hard to recruit part-time lecturer Barack Obama into academia when his early political career was foundering, the New Republic reports. Some of the school's conservative scholars say they disagreed with Obama's political bent but were impressed with his willingness to hear opposing views—and may even cross over to vote for him.
"He's much more intellectual, much more thoughtful, much more interested in discussion, debate, and dialogue than the typical politician," said a former dean. "And that gives me some confidence about him, even though from my perspective he's much too liberal. I've never voted for a Democrat in my entire life. He's the first one I might vote for."