Only Senator Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaMullen: 'National security issues do not wait' for presidential transitions Is Trump headed to another campaign or to a courtroom? With the Chang'e 5 launch, China takes a giant leap forward in the race to the moon MORE had the courage to stand up and demand that radio talk-show host Don Imus be fired. The other presidential candidates, including Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiKrebs says allegations of foreign interference in 2020 election 'farcical'  Trump campaign loses appeal over Pennsylvania race Krebs: I'm 'most upset' I didn't get to say goodbye to my team MORE, Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonCornyn spox: Neera Tanden has 'no chance' of being confirmed as Biden's OMB pick Groups seek to get Black vote out for Democrats in Georgia runoffs Biden's political position is tougher than Trump's MORE and John McCainJohn Sidney McCainBiden eyeing Cindy McCain for UK ambassador position: report The Memo: GOP mulls its future after Trump Juan Williams: Obama's dire warnings about right-wing media MORE punted and condemned his statements but stopped short of urging his dismissal.

Imus commits the ultimate sin almost every time he goes on the air:  He makes bigotry fun and hatred entertaining. His ethnic jokes appeal to the basest of our prejudices and legitimize them.  When he calls former Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney’s hairstyle “buckwheat big hair” or he lets comedians on his show refer to “bagel-eating little Jew boys” and attributes their protests in their community to the fact that “they raised the price of bagels a nickel,” he spews his poison on the airwaves.

But all of the presidential candidates had a dilemma: Imus might survive the controversy. He might remain on the air. And, in that capacity, they knew he would take revenge on all those who dissed him during his trials. So Giuliani, Hillary, McCain and the rest copped out and settled for criticizing his remarks.

But Obama showed real guts. Of course it was easier for him to urge Imus’s dismissal since the current targets of his bile were black. But just the same, he demanded Imus’s dismissal. Once he spoke out, Imus’s fate was sealed. The networks now have to fire him.

In the first test of courage in the 2007-08 campaign, Rudy, Hillary, McCain and the rest were found wanting. But Obama came through with flying colors.