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

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


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. Nancy

    Barack, all your supporters know you are not that kind of man. Hillary would have "folded" under this kind of attack. You are showing just how strong a president you will be. Sorry media, but the Obama supporters just don't cave under pressure. We will not let your biased opinions sway us.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  2. Kim P. Atlanta, GA

    I am not outraged Sen. Obama that you have to now denounce and reject the "man" as well as his personal views. I am outraged that you were put in a position not by Rev. Wright, but by the racist and bigoted American public and the media that feeds into their sick needs to keep any and everyone of color in their place. What this proves, you still can only achieve in these United States of America to the level and degree approved and sanctioned by White America. Shame on you America. Shame on us all

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  3. Buck Burton

    I believe his views are exactly the same as Rev. Wright, that's why he attended for 20 years and was completely comfortable with it. He simply got caught and is looking for a way to minimize the damage.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  4. emily Steinberg

    Great Job! Excellent comments!!!!!
    Now, let's move on, and talk about the issues that are hurting our country!

    Obama '08!!!!!!!!!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  5. America makes me sad!!!

    Good for you Obama!! It's a shame that American is sooo one sided here!! This is a bunch of BS!!! McCain and Hillary can have equally radical pastors as well and never have to answer for it! NEVER!!! My country has lost her mind over the fact that Obama is a black man running for President!! Everything that he does he has to do it 150% better then Hillary or McCain! Let's face it (and I can't believe that I'm actually saying this but......) my country is extremely racist!! I didn't find that out until Obama starting running for president! I have heard and seen some surprising actions among our people and the media as well. The media uses other words to define why he's not electable but it's all about racism!! It makes me extremely sad!!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  6. What is This?

    You criticize him, and when he finally comes out very strongly against it, it isn't enough. Hillary has former pastors of hers that are just as literature in hate speech, but it isn't covered.

    This shouldn't even be news. Obama is not Wright. Bill isn't supposed to share views with Hillary (Hello CFTA), and they're married!

    He speaks for himself. Now let it go.

    Democratic Unity '08

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  7. Janet

    It is great that Obama stands as a man. Obama is always prepared to step up and admit and/or address concerns surrounding him. Hillary lies constantly about gun fire shooting over her head, her husband's affairs, and how hard she worked in the White House.
    If Hillary wins the nomination I will vote for McCain.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  8. Thomas

    Just like your sweet , misguided, grandma right Barry Obama?? This guy is going to rewrite the book on how to be a "slick, don't ever let it stick" politician. I am waiting for him to denounce his grandma & maybe even his wife in the coming months if it will help him get elected. What a fraud.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  9. denise

    I agree we need to move forward..Rev.Wright isn't running for President Obama is..For those of you that are making Rev Wright an issue wasn't going to vote for Obama in the first place..I will say we still don't treat everybody in this country as a equal..I listened to the Tom Joyner Show this morning and i was stunned to hear an article that Pat Buchanon wrote and how he talked really down on Black people..Where's the new's story about that..Pat 's comment happened 4 wks ago i suggest ya google it..Race is still a factor in this country and comments like what Pat Buchanan said lets me know that White America isn't going to let Obama win that's why Rev Wright 's comment s keep coming up folks are looking for excuses

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  10. Alex - Austin

    Obama is not Rev Wright. That fact should be even clearer now than it was when they were born at different times with different parents. Who would have thought a person could have such different ideas from their pastor??
    God please bless America!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  11. jp

    Please people, just look at his wife's comments, you don't have to be a FREAKIN ROCKET scientist to connect the dots!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  12. Newman

    Get beyond the culture wars and distractions. Win Indiana and NC and unite the party behind Obama.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  13. Poca

    I AM WITH YOU OBAMA! What Rev. Wright did was WRONG! He is looking for SELF INTEREST! Not all African American CHURCHES are like that...... I am PROUD TO BE AN OBAMA for President of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA SUPPORTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  14. Hank in PA

    Whoop tee dooo

    Obama surely knew a lot more about how Obama really acts/thinks than he ever will admit after a 20 year close personal friendship and mentorship. Clearly, Obama is finding out what it is like to be under the critical eye of the nation, and he suddenly is realizing how big an issue his past HAS to be, with his limited national exposure prior to this!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  15. Nora

    It is so unfortunate that Wright feels the need to stand in the way of Obama and the White House. As a Christian I feel like Wright is allowing his ego to overpower his love for Christ and for his people. What a sad situation. I pray that Obama overcomes this situation and continues to show how God's light shines on him for the prayers of the righteous are never forsaken. Wright will regret his choices.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  16. wkf

    Give me a break..now that his Poll numbers are slipping and Hillary is showing strength against McCain he slams Wright.

    You are DONE Obama.

    Hillary '08!!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  17. ChimChim

    Good job, Mr Obama. It only took a couple of months after your polls and recent lost primary contests to distance yourself further from Wright. That's the indecisve leadership we're looking for.

    Obama 2016!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  18. tim ohio

    The Titanic is taking on water! The Carpathia (Hillary) is waiting there to save all the super delagates from going under in Novemeber. Jump!
    Save yourselves and us(democrats) !! Give 'em hell Hillary!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  19. John

    Wright is no different than any other religious leader who knows nothing about the Bible and seeks only to make a fortune of the backs of innocent people. Need proof? How does he reconcile his "patriotism" with Matthew 24:52 Return your sword to its place, for all those who take the sword will perish by the sword. He not only does not teach the truth, he promotes falsehoods and thus misleads others. He is con, a snake, and nothing more than a follower of Satan.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  20. Kyla

    I am once again proud of Sen. Barack Obama.

    He has proven once again how a leader should handle an issue.

    I will lead this country much better than any other candidate.

    I will never vote for Hillary Clinton!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  21. Independent

    Good job Obama... I understand what exactly it means to know an arrogant and ego maniac preacher. Some of these ministers are loud mouth jerks that needs to be put in their place. Remember all preachers are not called of God they are called by themselves.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  22. Randal NYC

    This is sad. I truly believe Obama and I think Wright has been extreamly selfish in this whole ordeal.
    A black man sunk the first possible black president.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  23. kim nyc


    Sen. Obama please let this be your last response to Rev. Wright. Stop adding to the discussion after today's strong response. Educated people can tell the difference b/w you and the reverand. You are not nearly the same person or share the same views. I would bet that more than 50% of Americans understand this concept. BUT ..... BUT let's not forget the weaker 50% of America. Probably the same 50% that voted for bush in 2004. There are many many bandwagoners here in the US who don't have the ability to think situations beyond the initial layer.

    Don't count on us to be smart. Stop respsonding on Wright, ignore and brush it off.

    OBAMA 08!!!

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  24. Eppich

    He did what Karl Rove told him to do. Why do you think Karl Rove is offering advice to Obama? Maybe he know that he is an easier target for the Republicans to go after in November.

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  25. John

    My Father always said if someone hesitates to speak what they are saying than it is rehearsed or not the truth...when he was answering those questions it seemed that every other word was silence then a "UMM" or an "UHHH" Seems as if he wasnt speaking from the heart to me....

    April 29, 2008 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
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