October 16th, 2007
03:30 PM ET
11 years ago

Obama: Some won't vote because of safety concerns

Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois.

(CNN) – Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama told a radio audience he believes some would-be supporters won’t vote for him out of concern for his safety, and urged them to overcome a “disempowering attitude.”

Obama’s comments came Tuesday in an appearance on the nationally-syndicated Tom Joyner Morning Show. Obama cited a New York Times article where several African-American women in South Carolina expressed concern someone might try to harm him. One of the women said that the best way to protect Obama might be by not voting for him.

Obama told Joyner that, while grateful for the expression of concern, he wanted to encourage voters to focus more on the opportunity at hand and not succumb to what he called a “disempowering attitude.”

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and we need to take advantage of it,” he said.

Obama became the first candidate to receive Secret Service protection after Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, expressed concern over his colleague’s safety. Sen. Hillary Clinton already receives protection due to her status as a former first lady.

- CNN Political Assignment Editor Alta Spells

soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. pam Eugene, OR

    Obama is our future. Please keep him safe. He is our best and brightest hope for change. No more Bush/Clinton!

    October 16, 2007 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  2. Diamond


    I forgot to post the link for you to join the movement and save the Democratic Party from disaster:


    October 16, 2007 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  3. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    To the American Women in South Carolina who fear a vote for Obama will bring him harm, have no fear because your fear is not stopping his campaign, he's moving forward. Should anything happen to Obama or any other candidate, trust me, the justice system will move swiftly.

    October 16, 2007 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  4. Michael Cushman San Antonio Tx

    I find it amazing that this article gets coverage and not the block of Bush FEC nomination. Cnn is no better than FOX

    October 16, 2007 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  5. Liberal Chic

    I read that NYT article and am also very puzzled by the safety concerns. A friend believes it is just the black people's way of rationalizing their ambivalence about a black candidate. I don't know, but it just sounds weirdly bizarre.

    October 17, 2007 12:44 am at 12:44 am |
  6. Maria, Houston

    Corrupt and gossip-thirsty MSM and dumb Democratic sheep are already trying to kill his message every day.

    All those Hillary supporters who can't think for themselves and did not oppose the war cause "the whole country was lied to"... yeah, right, how convenient to blame Republicans.

    Smart people questioned the war from the beginning, just like they oppose your phoney candidate now. Democrats eat their young.

    October 17, 2007 01:38 am at 1:38 am |
  7. ronnie - knoxville

    its a really sad commentary on our country that someone would NOT vote for a person because they already see their saftey being aproblem.

    October 17, 2007 01:54 am at 1:54 am |
  8. Steve, Lovelock, Nevada

    And of course, this has NOTHING to do with his race or ideas....

    And you libs accuse the Republicans of using 9/11 for political advantage?

    If Obama had said that he has secret service protection, that he is as safe, or more so, than other candidates and that he has faith in the people of this country and who are around him to protect him, I could have respected the answer.

    October 17, 2007 07:03 am at 7:03 am |
  9. Chris, Middletown, CT

    Obama strikes me as honest and forthright...(seriously) – I think he really wants to make a difference....and if elected....I believe he would be someone to join the country together....with that said....I believe that Giuliani would also do the same.....but far more fiscally conservative....(and stronger foreign policy) – so...between the two – Giuliani gets my vote....between Obama and the other Republicans....Obama would most likely get my vote....Hillary never will (some of us read.....speaking of things....look up Saul Alinsky...and his student Hillary....and correlate his marxist teachings....with the entitlement programs she has put forth....oh yes....the student has become the teacher)

    October 17, 2007 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  10. Linda - Albany, NY

    No, some won't vote because we're sick to death of lies, mud-slinging, empty promises and morons.

    Show me one candidate that is actually trustworthy.

    October 17, 2007 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  11. Liberal Chic

    Steve, Lovelock, Nevada :

    Well said.

    October 18, 2007 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
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