Barack Obama | Election 2008 | News | Religion

Barack Obama Repudiates Reverend Jeremiah Wright

Press conference on the left, Q&A on the right, via Talking Points Memo.

Said Obama: I am outraged by the comments that were made and saddened over the spectacle that we saw yesterday. I had been a member of Trinity United Church since 1992. I've known Reverend Wright for almost twenty years. The person I saw yesterday was not the person that I met twenty years ago. His comments were not only divisive and destructive, but I believe that they end up giving comfort to those who prey on hate, and I believe that they do not portray accurately the perspective of the black church. They certainly don't portray accurately my values and beliefs. And if Reverend Wright thinks that that's political posturing, as he put it, then he doesn't know me very well. And based on his remarks yesterday, well, I might not know him as well as I thought, either.

Wright's comments at the National Press Club, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. I was with him before I was against him.

    Flip flopper.

    Oh and dude, you totally knew about the sermons before Youtube found out about them. Give me a break. And since then Rev. Wright has said nothing we hadn't already heard. NOW he's upset about it enough to call it grandstanding.

    Too little...too late.

    Posted by: BANNE | Apr 29, 2008 5:50:00 PM

  2. TOO LITTLE TOO LATE...He's been a member of his church for 20 YEARS...I think what he means to say is he is "outraged" people found out the kind of things his spiritual advisor believes in...

    Posted by: daveynyc | Apr 29, 2008 5:54:10 PM

  3. I'm actually for HRC, but stop the madness. Who the F*#K cares about some wacky preacher - we're not voting for him. I'm concerned about energy/food prices, the dollar which is in free-fall, soldiers getting killed in Iraq, gay marriage. I really am beginning to think there is a conspiracy of distraction going on...oh and P.S. even though I want HRC to get the nomination, Obama has my vote - and I certainly hope the Obama supporters will get behind HRC if she gets the nom... can you imagine McCain in the White House... what a disaster...

    Posted by: MikeH63 | Apr 29, 2008 6:03:14 PM

  4. Obama is over!!!

    Posted by: shifty politician | Apr 29, 2008 6:06:05 PM

  5. Oh please. I'm an atheist, and I go to church. Whatever the reverend says has little to do with Obama.

    Posted by: anon | Apr 29, 2008 6:10:21 PM

  6. Barack Obama is not a very good judge of charecter if he's been going to Wright's church all these years and didn't know what a lunatic the Reverend was. Is that really who you want as President? NOT ME~!!!

    Posted by: oh hell to the no! | Apr 29, 2008 6:12:33 PM

  7. "Repudiates?" Interesting word choice, but I guess this blog is all about unrequitted Obama-love now. I'd be more likely to say that Obama collected 90% of the black vote in as many states as he possibly could before he had to throw them under the bus and save his ass in Indiana - which is exactly what he is going to do to the gay voting bloc the first time his black evangelical base opposes any pro-"pansy" legislation that he introduces. I personally think the guy doesn't hate us "pansies," but he has now shown he will capitulate to whomever can take him the farthest. Hope and change my ass.

    Posted by: OzoneDude | Apr 29, 2008 6:12:49 PM

  8. Several things—

    Whether or not Obama wins the nomination, this second Wright controversy has totally “obliterated” Obama’s well-received Philadelphia race speech. From here on out that first speech will never be mentioned again without an in-depth discussion of the ensuing madness. It makes Obama look foolish for having been so serious and conciliatory in that first speech, and I would be VERY angry with Wright for that at the very least.

    When the Wright brouhaha first broke, many were quick to point out that:

    1.) People did not understand the black church and its idiosyncrasies (the cadences, the emotion, the ‘amens’, etc.)

    --Now everyone is saying that Reverend Wright is only ONE REPRESENTATION of the black church. Good luck with that argument with white Catholics.

    2.) Wright’s sermons were taken out of context.

    --What Wright has said over the last few days is the EXACT SAME THING that he said in those YouTube sermons. NOTHING changed. But NOW Obama finds them extra-specially outrageous and divisive?

    This is a total catastrophe for Obama, an even bigger one if he gets the nomination. People are going to ask—No one ever told you that the guy has blamed AIDS on the US government? That he thinks Israel is a terrorist nation?

    And if any one on this blog even pauses for ONE SECOND to think of a defense for these last two statements—go right ahead, but you have no interest in actually putting a Democrat in the White House.

    Posted by: jmg | Apr 29, 2008 6:14:06 PM

  9. This is seriously just THE most annoying election in the history of mankind. Yes. Mankind. At this point, I just hate all of them and I can't imagine ANY of them in the White House. My friends and I, who at first were so gung ho about this election, talking politics almost every day, have completely lost all of that thunder.

    At this point, I'll vote for the Democratic nominee. I just really honestly wish we could wipe the slate totally clean and start over.

    Posted by: David | Apr 29, 2008 6:19:55 PM

  10. Total flip flop.

    I, on the other hand, have maintained every one of my relationships over the past 20 years. I currently support everything that every former friend, colleague or associate says. I have never grown apart from someone I once respected. I maintain exactly parallel life courses with everyone who enters my life. If Obama can't achieve this, then there is no way that he can hope to be president.

    Posted by: get real | Apr 29, 2008 6:22:29 PM

  11. Rev Wright is the most important issue facing the United States. He will decide the fate of nations. He speaks for all of us.

    Or maybe this is the most asinine non-story that GOP strategists have ever cooked up.

    Obama: "I cannot prevent him from making these remarks," but "when I say I find these comments appalling I mean it. It contradicts what I'm about and who I am ... It is completely opposed to what I stand for and where I want to take this country."

    That's good enough for me. The GOP strategists who exploited the "guilt by association" game and the bottom feeders of the MSM who put it in play are the real culprits.

    That Obama still carries himself with the composure he does - considering the idiotic provocations he endures daily - amazes me.

    Posted by: FASTLAD | Apr 29, 2008 6:37:57 PM

  12. The BEST coverage was by Jon Stewart and funny how bama supporter Andy Towle has not included it

    Posted by: MCnNYC | Apr 29, 2008 6:41:37 PM

  13. First of all JMG , how do you know what Obama was thinking 20 years ago as he sat in the pews ? He may have consistently rejected the extremist portions of Wrights sermons for his entire membership for all we know.
    Secondly, I would ask you what religion exists that one can agree with on every single point of doctrine ? As gays we should be more sensitive to the idea one can believe in the broader , positive teachings of a faith w/o ascribing to its most extremist proponents. Mother Theresa and Jerry Falwell both consider themselves Christians, I daresay.
    Thirdly, Wright is an opportunist , divisive , hate spewing pastor, period, if one can't separate that from the tone of Obama's, career , writings and current campaign of inclusion then there's really nothing left to say.
    Lastly, this entire farce merely shows the degree to which this country has absolutely no respect for the secularism of the Constitution.Separation of Church and State........sure. What does it say about a country when it demands it's candidates for political office are made to brag about their religious affiliations in order to win office ? And,I ask you if that's to be the acid test then where's the MSM on McCain / Hagee or Hillary / Doug Coe ?

    Posted by: aidanc | Apr 29, 2008 6:43:33 PM

  14. That this got more attention that Obama's fealty to Donnie McClurkin is. . . ty[ival.

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Apr 29, 2008 6:48:06 PM

  15. He's a liar potty mouth that looks good in a suit.

    Posted by: Br!on | Apr 29, 2008 6:51:55 PM

  16. I’m less-than-impressed with Sen. Obama’s renunciation of Rev. Wright today. Where was Obama’s outrage on any-given Sunday for the last twenty years? The good Reverand’s been saying the same things for years…and Obama’s suddenly noticed? I’m not buying it.

    Six-months-ago I thought that perhaps Sen. Obama was a post-Racial politics figure like a Tiger Woods who was worthy of leading our Nation; but now he’s been revealed to be just another two-faced opportunist Black Politician who thought he could have it both-ways. Guilt-by-association applies when you stood by man for twenty-years when you had every opportunity to either speak-up or walk-away.

    This is far more serious than the distasteful Right-wing and crypto-racist Evangelical and Fundamentalist preachers claiming support of Sen. McCain. None of them were Sen McCain’s personal mentors nor spiritual advisers for over two-decades. Sharing a podium for political-ends is nothing compared to admitting the man to your home for years, into your family-life, or allowing him to morally-instruct your children by word and demonstartion in the ways of the Lord and Man.

    Posted by: Ted B. (Charging Rhino) | Apr 29, 2008 6:54:30 PM

  17. LOl, this whole thing is too funny, but sad at the same time, the HRC "supporters" are on cloud 9 becuase of this nitwit and his nonsense, and, yet, still don't see the factor that she has the highest negative rating of anyone other than Bush, and, when he GOP gets donw with her, welcome McCain, who I think would and is a better person than she is and, should she manage to win and destroy the party, like she wants, it will be funny to see the same posters going off on the not so gay friendly McCain.

    A non-story except for the media who keeps on giving McCain and Shillary, who I would never vote for, a pass on real issues, and, the most uniformed voting block on the planet falls for it hook line and sinker, and, won't demand real talk about real issues, got Bush this way, and, now we have McCain this way. And, the GOP wants her more than they do Obama, that is the truth.

    Posted by: Juan Pablo | Apr 29, 2008 6:55:58 PM

  18. Wasn't he stoned 20 years ago when he tried to find salvation. He probably hallucinated his friendship with Wright.

    Posted by: Stoney | Apr 29, 2008 6:56:26 PM

  19. And I repudiate Madonna. The person I saw yesterday was not the person that I met twenty years ago..

    I didn't listen to any of the records and CDs that I have of hers. I didn't know when I was dancing to her music that she was selling Sex, of all things.

    Posted by: dc8stretch | Apr 29, 2008 7:26:38 PM

  20. Ever since Ohio and Texas, Obama's behavior has been bizarre and inexplicable. Even I think Obama will become the Democratic nominee, and I didn't vote for him. The odds are totally in his favor. But what's with all the gaffes and stumbling lately?

    Once Obama decided to stick with Wright (amid the accusations of racism and anti-semitism) a few months ago, he should've just left it at that. He said what he wanted to say, and that should've been the end of it.

    But to publically renounce Wright at the very moment the latter says he's behaving like a "politician" only draws more negative attention to that very point. It makes him look like he's more angry about being called out on his "politicial" nature than anything else.

    What is he going to do next? Bring out the Walter Mondale tank and John Kerry's orange jumpsuit?

    Posted by: John | Apr 29, 2008 7:31:44 PM


    Here is a pretty good synopsis of Hillary's continued gay-baiting. It really is amazing that some gay people continue to look past this stuff, and worship Hillary as a diva. Obama is not perfect, but at least he didn't support DOMA and now lie about it...and he can say the word "gay".

    Posted by: Bry | Apr 29, 2008 9:07:20 PM

  22. OK people, Rev. Wright said nothing new here. Everything he said at the national press club are things we've heard in his sermons. So if what he said a year ago was SO awful, why is Obama just now repudiating it? He did not a few months ago and even said throwing off Rev. Wright would be no easier than throwing off his grandmother. Give me a break. He was well aware of what this nutjob was saying in church, whether he was there or not.

    And honestly, is this really what people are talking about in church? God, I'm glad I'm an atheist.

    Posted by: Jeanluc | Apr 29, 2008 9:26:21 PM

  23. Bry, couldn't agree with you more. I just do not get it-- almost all of my gay friends have this strange support of Hillary. She has done NOTHING for the gay community, and her husband gave us DOMA and Don't Ask Don't Tell.
    Today Hillary stood beside the NC Governor as he made his homophobic "pansy" comment... and SHE LAUGHED!!! You can watch the video for yourself. Unbelievable. She shows up at gay events to grab their money, then laughs along side of homophobes... and the gays love her because she's a diva!!! Stupid fools!!!

    Posted by: Rob | Apr 29, 2008 9:27:12 PM

  24. Obama will do more for gays that most blind people here following sHillary.

    Although he was not my #1 choice, among the 3 running, he will do the most for MOST Americans including gays.

    sHillary has become a simple POLITICAL WHORE who will do anything to stay in $$$ Power.

    Meanwhile we fight and gays still are living in the 90s. It's 2008 get with the program.

    Even NY Times recognizes that Obama will do more for gays than sHillary:

    "What has either Clinton done for gay Americans? I thought Bill’s much-touted “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” program for the military was largely considered a disaster. As for her, what human rights legislation has she backed? What unpopular stands has she taken?
    Obama has spoken in black churches –home to social conservatives who would make Rush Limbaugh look like a lefty– of the need to accept gays. What has Hillary done?"

    sHillary has 2 choices: leave voluntarily or be pushed out.

    Posted by: FunMe | Apr 29, 2008 9:36:44 PM

  25. jimmyboy: i think i am winning my $10 USD. Obama is such a goner. I mean, he may still win the primary because he is the establishment's choice, but he is going to be creamed by Mccain.

    Posted by: Landis | Apr 29, 2008 9:38:38 PM

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