March 18th, 2008
12:03 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama: We can move beyond some of our racial wounds


Watch portions of Obama's speech Monday. (Getty Images)

PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania (CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama said Tuesday he chose to run for president because he believes "we cannot solve the challenges of our time unless we solve them together."

Speaking to supporters at Philadelphia's National Constitution Center, the Democratic presidential candidate said he rejected racially charged comments made by the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, but explained the root of his remarks.

Wright used to preach at the Trinity United Church of Christ, where Obama worships.

Obama said that his belief that all people want to move in the same direction comes from his "unyielding faith in the decency and generosity of the American people. But it also comes from my own American story."

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (314 Responses)
  1. Will, NJ

    "Yes We Can" lie on TV and then apologize on TV again... hmmm McCain will get my vote if Hillary is not the Dem nominee. Can let an inexperienced guy run this big country in these terms!

    March 18, 2008 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  2. Ann Aloha FariMedia, PA

    I see the moderators are still stacking the Pro-Obama Deck....As Usual.

    March 18, 2008 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  3. Jay from San Diego

    Obama did not admitt to being in church when Rev. Wright said the things the are being constanly played on youtube. WHat Sen. Obama admitted was being present when he said some things that were Controversal....anyways, His travel records puts him in Florida at the time of one of the afromentioned speeches.

    March 18, 2008 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  4. stacy

    snow job or truth? God Bless America.

    March 18, 2008 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  5. Eye Opener - Las Vegas

    "We can move beyond "SOME" of our racial wounds"? REALLY?
    Why not " Can we get over ALL of our racial wounds and move on?"
    What racial wounds can we not move beyond from? And I thought the whole campaign was not about race.

    March 18, 2008 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  6. xtina

    We cannot afford to have someone as our leader who won't stand up to a racist and an anti-Semite. Do you attend a house of worship that's led by a man who hates a whole race of people? Do you bring your children to be baptized there? Do you donate $22,000 to a place that preaches anti-Jewish teachings? Apparently, if you're Barack Obama you do

    March 18, 2008 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  7. Undecided

    As a white man...I found him very believable... I was shocked to hear the words of Pastor Wright and wanted to hear what Obama had to say for himself. I vote in Pen. on the 22nd and still haven’t made up my mind but Obama was sincere and this is what I was waiting to see from him. (A little emotion) I will not fault him for his pastor's words.

    March 18, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  8. judy santucci

    I am a life long democrat and all the talking heads on tv can say what they want. I am appalled by Barack Obama's life. I thought he was more sophisticated than that. polls and commentators can say all they want, but when the people vote from now on those clips will be in the back of their mind. Expect a BIG surge for Hillary! Thank God

    March 18, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |

    I think that he was very strong,fair, and ready to be president of the United States of America. The ones that don't think this man is power is just not ready to change!!! Im ready to change how about you?

    March 18, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  10. Help me Understand

    Remind me again what is stance was on Geraldine Ferrard's comments.

    March 18, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  11. Frank in Missouri

    Excellent speech with strong, valid points !!!

    You don't slap wrong labels on this candidate!


    March 18, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  12. Tim

    I like how every Hillary supporter spews there "actions speak louder than words" line like little trained parakeets. What actions has Hillary ever done that are so inspiring? Sorry, washing Bill's semen stained clothes doesnt count.

    March 18, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  13. John

    Obama you blew it.

    March 18, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  14. deb in az

    im not a obama supporter, but i really think he gave a great speach and i think it was from the i would hope the candidates get beyond this and stop attacking each other... focus on the issues and show the differences between the republican beliefs and the democratic beliefs........we need to get the republicans out of office and build a strong america..... vote democratic

    March 18, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  15. Christi

    Love, love, love him. He is caring, vibrant, creative, and intelligent. What a refreshing change to old-style politics.

    If Hillary wins, we'll vote for her too. She is our second choice no question about it. UNITE DEMOCRATS, UNITE!!!!

    Anybody but a Republican!!! Close your eyes and imagine $8.00 a gallon gas!!! 4,000 dead American troops in Iraq. A never ending war – and possibly a new war in Iran.

    March 18, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  16. Obamista NYC

    All of you Obama critics are so cynical and diabolical.

    This is the reason why this country is so stagnant because of the same old hate that people thrive off of.


    March 18, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  17. America Think

    Ever wondered why Obama did not say 'God Bless America" at the end of his speech?!
    It seems to give the same rehersed specch and coninues to play politics with voters.
    I am neither left or right but I can clearly see that Obama know how to yank your chains.

    March 18, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  18. Pat

    A truly impressive American, a man ahead of his time. And a speech excellent in its ability to convey his beliefs and thoughts clearly in what is a difficult and often emotive subject.

    March 18, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  19. SONIA

    just words
    just words
    you call him uncle,,,,,,,,ur mentor..............ur friend,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,ur inspiration,,he married you ,he baptized ur kids,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
    and you never knew his thinking ,,,,,,,,,,,,,

    liar ,,,just words

    March 18, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  20. character

    obama rode the fence, playing it safe, i am a black voter and he dont have my vote.

    March 18, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  21. LJD

    YES WE CAN!!
    OBAMA '08

    March 18, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  22. Mike Birmingham, AL

    Albert – you're an idiot.

    Obama never said he was in church when those statements were made, he was in Florida, it has been proven, and there is video.

    I know you thought you had something here, but just let it go.

    March 18, 2008 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  23. brenda

    My concern is why is politics, and hatred being taught in the church. This has nothing to to with the way GOD tells us to behave. Love your enemy. If this is what our children are being taught, what chance is there for any kind of peace among race, or God Blessing America. People wake up. Obama should be ashame.

    March 18, 2008 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  24. ceetip

    I could never ever vote for someone was a member of a black separatist church for 20 years. Just as I would never ever vote for someone who was a member of a white supremest group. This man is still scary.

    March 18, 2008 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  25. tdo

    This blog is clearly being moderated by a obama voter. All the other blogs are 50:1 not for obama

    March 18, 2008 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
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