April 29th, 2008
02:51 PM ET
3 years ago

Obama says he's 'outraged' with pastor's comments

CNN

Watch Barack Obama comment on his former pastor.

(CNN) - In his harshest criticism yet of his former minister, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Barack Obama said he was “outraged” by Wright’s comments at the National Press Club Monday, and “saddened by the spectacle.”

“I have been a member of Trinity Church since 1992. I have known Rev. Wright for almost 20 years,” he said at a Winston-Salem, North Carolina press conference Tuesday. “The person I saw yesterday is not the person I met 20 years ago.”

Obama said he was outraged by Wright’s remarks that seemed to suggest the U.S. government might be responsible for the spread of AIDS in the black community, and his equation of some American wartime efforts with terrorism. And he seemed to signal a complete break with his former minister.

“What particularly angered me was his suggestion somehow that my previous denunciation of his remarks were somehow political posturing,” said Obama, who added that Wright had shown “little regard for me” and seemed more concerned with “taking center stage.”

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (866 Responses)
  1. Dave, PA

    Too little, too late, too many changes in his position:

    "I didn't hear those statements."
    "You have to understand the context."
    "I would have left the church if he hadn't retired."
    "I'm outraged by his statements!"

    How do you undo twenty years of subtle brainwashing?

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  2. OBAMA SUPPORTER IN IOWA

    I am a 54 year white woman who supports Obama and I happen to agree with everything I've heard Rev. Wright say on TV. I spoke with my 78 and 77 year old white parents and they agree too. Why is this such an issue? Why is CNN trying to tell everyone what they should think and feel about the comments Rev. Wright made? What am I missing? Does everyone else think we live in a perfect country that's never made any mistakes?

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  3. Armando

    I must say that I don't know what to make of Rev.Wright but I do know one thing "Every time I see and hear Barack Obama speak I am in awe" and he will have my vote.

    Obama is a great man

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  4. Jamaal Kansas

    Barack keep going we believe you it is just the Hilary supporters and the Mcshame supporters trying to take you down Keeping going and I am sending 150 dollars right now Obama 08 Keep going every donate to day to show everyone we are sticking with Barack Obama

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  5. Chuck

    I must adimit I have listened to two of his sermons and I didnt think they were that bad; however I am with you on this. Rev Wright just seemed to me to be posturing and almost willfully trying to hurt your campaign. It is such a shame the way he acted at the National Press Club, to me his actions were borderling arrogant, condesenting and contemptious add in a bit of mockery on top. Good to see you take this stand.
    Im with you all the way.

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  6. CB in Florida

    Come On Obama! Get that clown Rev. Wright out of the discussion and get back on your game and to the issues. Rev Wright's love with the media attention and their apparent love affair with him will not stop. Stay with the issues voters want to hear about. Many of us are steadfastly with you in your quest. God bless you; let’s show America the man we believe in that's kicked much butt since Super Tuesday! YES YOU CAN, YES WE CAN! OBAMA 08!

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  7. Onari

    BO, you are not serious...if you have being going to that church for 20 years and did know your pastor then there is either or both of two things has happened viz: you are economical with the truth or you have very bad judgment...I cant imagine taking my kids to this kind church...that church is a training ground for hate and extremism. BO just drop out of the race, you are just another politician, that can say anything to get elected....

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  8. nish

    Hillary and MSM wants to keep the wright issue alive
    to use him as a weapon against Obama

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  9. June

    Yes, Barack, all well and good that Wright is not the same person. But when did he become what he is today, overnight? I doubt it and so do many other Americans who believe you should have distanced yourself from him years ago; too little, too late, Barack. Go Hillary!

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  10. Jim

    Why do we pay so much attention to Clinton's problems and not to Obama's? If the situation was different, and this was Clinton's pastor, you would hear twice the outcry on these message boards.

    April 29, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  11. Black Church Goer

    Rev. Wright does not speak for the black church, Barack Obama, or black people. He is a self absorbed individual who is probably being financed by Clinton supporters to go on this PR tour. What an idiot!!!

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  12. Chris

    You knew this man for 20 years. You have poor judgment. This disqualifies you for the presidency. This man "is like family". What else could you drag us (US) into? You are too inexperienced at a national level, certainly at an international level, and this proved it. You need to be trained into this position. Perhaps as Vice Pres. If Hillary will still have you that is.

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  13. will

    guess what obama just lost the black vote,how can you throw MR Wright under the train

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  14. Jack

    Obama is behaving like a typical Washington politician and talks bull about change and what not....

    Wright was right "Obama talks as a politician"

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  15. Allen

    The next Obama controversy is going to be his Muslim past-you can take this to the bank....

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  16. Paige, Raleigh, NC

    I am so sincerely glad that Senator Obama chose to speak out today to clarify his views regarding Rev. Wright.

    Good job Obama and you have my vote!

    And, religion should not even be in the mix with politics. I don't care what peoples pastors say in the pulpit every Sunday. It's who YOU are (not your pastors words) that matter. It just infuriates me that the media is even giving Reverend Wright any air time at all. Let the candidates talk about issues! At least Senator Obama is honest. Clinton's campaign has been built on lie after lie (you can't deny it).

    Again, great job Obama!

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  17. All American--->

    I'm not voting for Rev. Wright. I'm voting for Sen. Obama and I wish the media would focus on the ISSUES instead of continuously trying to distract us.

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  18. ike

    Someone else will say anything to get elected. Oops looks like the Obaba train in coming off the tracks. I just hope we wise up before we elect another Bush. If you stop and listen to what he says he is selling the same smoke and mirrors that bush did twice. Heck Carl Rove is so impressed he offerd to help him. Wonder if that is because in a general election he would get pounded.

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  19. Sarah

    Obama in 08!
    Now let's focus on the real issues: health care, the economy, Iraq & Afghanistan, slowing climate change, and helping the American dream live again.

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  20. Chicagoman

    Now, do you see what a phony Obama is? I'm sure he read Carl Rove's advice on Newsweek. Rove suggested Obama repudiate his pastor more strongly to win back the voters he is losing.

    Now he is doing just that!

    What a phony! Do you trust him for change?

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  21. Matt

    This is the side of Mr. Obama I've been waiting to see. He realized the danger Rev. Wright posed to his candidacy and he finally cut him lose. He also realized that he owes it to the American people and to his supporters to truly fight for this nomination and for the presidency. Today was not an easy one for Mr. Obama, but he demonstrated courageous conviction and undeniable leadership. There is too much at stake in this election, and Mr. Obama provides us all with the opportunity to renew our country, restore our standing in the world, and to heal the divisions that have plagued us for much too long.

    God bless you Mr. Obama and may God bless America!

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  22. Jordan Howard

    I find it HILARIOUS how people are calling Obama a liar and then telling people to vote for Hilary.
    For starters you are speculating that Obama is lying.
    Also, Hilary Clinton's lying is WELL DOCUMENTED.
    Nothing suprises me anymore with a Hilary supporter. These are the same people who voted for George W based on who his father was. Hilary is not Bill. Obama is not Jerimiah. Let's stick to the issues and the clear winner is Obama.

    Obama 08

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  23. Andy

    Well...I was really on the fence but now my mind is made up...Hillary is the best choice. Hillary come on down!

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  24. Nancy

    Dear CNN Readers: "Politician" is not spelled P-o-l-i-t-i-o-n. I expect better from educated liberals.

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  25. Eli

    OBAMA, what a joke

    April 29, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
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