Tuesday, April 1

What's Wright to Obama?

Obama had to face his first major firestorm of the campaign when statements were made by his pastor of more than 20 years. In a widely viewed sermon from 2003, the Rev. Wright shouted from his pulpit, among other things:

"The government gives them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strike law and then wants us to sing 'God Bless America.' No, no, no, God damn America, that's in the Bible for killing innocent people. God damn America for treating our citizens as less than human. God damn America for as long as she acts like she is God and she is supreme."

He then went on to blame America for 9/11 since America has been engaged in state terrorism that has murdered far more innocents than were killed in America on 9/11. We should recall that when some conservative Christian leaders suggested that America had in some ways brought on 9/11 by its sins, these people were read the riot act by the mainstream media.


Last Tuesday, Obama gave a speech to clarify his relationship with Rev. Wright and to denounce "any statement that disparages our great country or serves to divide us from our allies. I also believe that words that degrade individuals have no place in our public dialogue, whether it's on the campaign stump or in the pulpit. In sum, I reject outright the statements by Rev. Wright that are at issue."

But questions still loom about their relationship; Wright's influence on Obama over the past 20 years; and Obama's knowledge of Wright's stance on issues of race. Controversies and scandals are part of the American political system, although many don't do much more than dull the shine on a candidate. Time will tell if this controversy becomes his achilles heel as it continues to make headlines and cast a shadow on Obama's convictions.

What do you think? Do you think Rev. Wright's statements will negatively impact Barack Obama's campaign. Answer the question in this week's sidebar poll.

2 comments:

Melissa said...

I don't think this is as big of a challenge for him as Hillary's exaggerated story (lie) about the snipers in Bosnia. Again, you would think in regards to her husband's scandal she would be more careful than the average politician to be sure every word out of her mouth can be proven true.

I think Obama will shake out okay with Democrats, but all this scandal just makes things a little easier for John McCain (which I think is a good thing!).

The Gang's All Here! said...

I get the feeling lately that he is becoming more of a media darling than Clinton - that he's not going down over this stuff. It seems as if Hilary's issues and faux pas are "bigger" and not yet circling the drain.

I do think that the continued sniping and griping and so on in the Democratic Party can only continue to be good for McCain. Incidentally, I have to say, I'm not crazy about McCain's new ad. I think it emphasizes his age - the quality of the POW film is so grainy and dated looking. He should be pushing the "current, relevant, vibrant, dynamic confident" card right now, in my humble opinion.

 

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