Senator Barack Obama failed to salute the flag?

Picture of Senator Barack Obama Failing to Salute the Flag While Others on a Platform, Including Senator Hillary Clinton, are Saluting-Truth!

Summary of eRumor:
A picture of Senator Barack Obama (below), Governor Bill Richardson of New Mexico, Senator Hillary Clinton, and one other person all on a platform and backed by an American flag.  The eRumor says that the National Anthem was being played at the time and that all but Senator Obama saluted.
The Truth:
The picture is authentic.  It was published in Time magazine and was taken 9/16/07 at an event in Indianola, Iowa where six Democratic presidential candidates appeared.  It was Iowa Senator Tom Harkin’s annual “meat and greet.”   The fourth person in the picture is Senator Harkin’s wife, Ruth.  Not seen in the picture are three other candidates who were standing out of view on the right side of the platform, Senator Chris Dodd, Senator John Edwards, Senator Joe Biden.
At question is what was going on with Senator Obama?   His critics are circulating the picture and saying that he is not respecting the flag or the National Anthem, especially since the protocol, according to the United States Flag code, is that civilians should have their right hands over their hearts and that they should be facing the flag.  His supporters are saying that this little lapse should not be held against him since there have been plenty of other events at which he has saluted the flag—so it did not mean that he would, in principle, avoid doing it.
Some supporters have suggested that perhaps the picture does not tell the whole story and that he may have raised his hand shortly after it was taken.
An ABC News video, however, shows that Senator Obama did not salute at any time during the Anthem and that everybody else on the platform did.

A spokesperson for the Senator told Fox News that it was ridiculous to suggest that Obama was making any kind of a statement and that sometimes “he does and sometimes he doesn’t place his hand over his heart during the National Anthem.”
In 2008, a hoax started circulating that claimed to quote Obama about why he didn’t salute the flag during the National Anthem and why he did not wear a lapel pin.  CLICK HERE for that story.
In response to email rumors that have circulated about Obama, his campaign has created a page to respond to the rumors.  CLICK HERE for the “Fight the Smears” page, which includes a video of Obama leading the Senate in the Pledge of Allegiance.

CLICK HERE for a list of other related stories about Barack Obama
Updated 10/29/07