Obama Beer Wins Kenyan Hearts (and Stomachs)

Kenyans are so proud of favorite grandson Barack Obama that they’ve named a beer after him—and vaulted it to the top of the sales charts.

According to Business Week, the beer is officially named “Senator Keg,” a draft brew launched by East African Breweries in November, 2004, the same month that Obama won his U.S. Senate seat.  The company says the name was a pure coincidence, but Kenyans don’t care.  They’ve unofficially dubbed it “Obama Beer” and are guzzling it so fast the company can barely meet demand.

Kenyans are extremely proud to claim Barack Obama as one of their own since his father was born in the country and he still has relatives living there.

Of course, another reason the beer is so popular is its price, about 30 cents a glass.  It was originally aimed at replacing cheap but dangerous home brews in a country where more than half the population lives on less than $1 per day, which makes mainstream beers selling for $1 to $3 a bottle prohibitively expensive.

The big question, of course, is whether “Obama Beer” will replace champagne as the drink of choice at the Presidential Inaugural Ball in 2009.

Dave Donelson, author of Heart of Diamonds

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