April 30th, 2008
03:37 PM ET
10 years ago

Clinton calls Wright comments 'offensive and outrageous'

 Clinton sharply criticized Wright Wednesday.

Clinton sharply criticized Wright Wednesday.

(CNN) - Hillary Clinton said Wednesday she personally took offense to the Rev. Jeremiah Wright's recent comments, the New York senator’s harshest assessment yet of Barack Obama's former minister.

"I think it’s offensive and outrageous. I’m going to express my opinion, others can express theirs," Clinton told Fox’s Bill O'Reilly. "It is part of just, you know, an atmosphere we’re in today.”

The comments appear to be a shift in Clinton’s tone on the matter. On Tuesday she criticized Republican presidential nominee John McCain for not doing enough to stop Republican ads running in North Carolina and Mississippi that feature Wright's comments.

"I regret the efforts by the Republicans to politicize this matter," Clinton said of the ad.

Speaking at the National Press Club Monday, Wright did not back down from some of his controversial remarks, including those that seemed to suggest the U.S. government might be responsible for the spread of AIDS among African-Americans, and his equation of U.S. wartime efforts with terrorism.

Wright also said Obama was acting like a politician in denouncing his controversial sermons.

Speaking with reporters Tuesday, Obama said he was outraged with Wright's latest comments.

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

Obama also said Wright's comments were not only "divisive and destructive," but they "end up giving comfort to those who prey on hate."

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (499 Responses)
  1. Pam, WV

    Hillary, I agree with Moses, Ca – Are you sure you want ot go there? You of all people should stick to the issues, unless you want someone to start digging in your closet – does the name Peter Paul ring a bell. Let's just stick to the issues. Rev. Wright is not running for President. His statements do not reflect on Sen. Obama's character; however should we start digging into things that do reflect on yours.

    April 30, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  2. Pam

    Hillary Clinton...queen of the bandwagon jumpers!

    April 30, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  3. Ryan - Texas

    Let the comments die. Even McCain said that he doesn't believe Barack has the same views as Rev. Wright. Just let it die!

    April 30, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  4. Eric

    I'll be watching Hillary, GIVE EM HELL GIRL!!!


    April 30, 2008 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  5. George

    where the hell did my comment go?????????????????

    April 30, 2008 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  6. Tony

    ENOUGH PEOPLE!!! Why are we all fighting?. For anyone that still doesn't know by now that Hillary will never win the nomination and that Obama is the democratic nominee, you must be dreaming. It's time to unite against the Republicans.

    April 30, 2008 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  7. Patrick

    Every person I've spoken to since Monday has mentioned their opinion on this Wright controversy. Are we to expect that Senator Clinton should also have an opinion? I mean, for pete's sake people, if Senator Clinton went to a white church with a racist preacher, she would have been forced from this race long ago.

    People should stop dissing both candidates, they need to come together so we can win the white house in November.

    Go Hillary!
    New York City

    April 30, 2008 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  8. fastrack

    Psychology 101 starts with the other golden rule: "Refuse to reward negative behavior".

    If everyone will just stop responding to this issue, it will die its own death. Hillary, if you want to butt into something, make it an issue that actually INVOLVES you.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  9. Catherine

    Sure Hilliary Clinton was offended by these remarks just like she was mis-spoke with the sniper fire. This is exactly what she thinks she need to win the primaries, she running out of money and the American people see straight thru her and Bill. Rev. Wright is not running for president OBAMA is, but this is just another thing to get us off of the issues at hand. We need affordable healthcare, get the troops out of IRAQ, work on medicare and the country is in a recession; let's stay focus.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  10. Wendy, NC

    If I, a white girl, stood in the middle of my church and shouted how Black America was responsible for all that is wrong in White America etc etc etc, and The Clintons happened to be members of my congregation for the past 20 years, and they sat there and said Amen, yes Jesus, yes Lord, and Amen to every derrogatory thing I had to say....I could only begin to imagine the criticizim they would face.

    Do not expect me to turn a blind eye to such blatant and inexcusable RACISIM. I will not vote for a man that can condone such actions.

    "I dream of a world where MY daughter will be judged not by the color of her skin, but by the content of her character. "

    Well I am judging Obama by the content of his character....maybe you should to.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  11. MMN - Milwaukee WI

    Nothing new a Clinton will pat you on your back with a smile on their face while they piss on you down your leg.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  12. Patricia Weller, Westminster, Maryland

    There is something very strange going on with Hillary and her campaign.

    First, when the news was all about Obama getting set to appear on Fox News, suddenly Hillary issues a debate challenge, as if she knew he would be asked about it on Fox News.

    Then right before she is to appear on Bill O'Reilly, suddenly Rev. Wright breaks his silence and loses whatever sympathy he originally had, AND Hillary gets to comment on that on her O'Reilly appearance.

    Add to that how often Hillary praises John McCain, and now today, Karl Rove criticizing John McCain (for being too private), and you have to wonder.

    Is it all just coincidence? Perhaps a hungry investigative reporter could find out just how close Hillary's ties are to Rupert Murdoch, Richard Mellon Scaithe, Karl Rove, and others. Does Hillary want the Democratic nomination so much that she would trade favors for it, and then take her chances in the general election???

    I am really starting to wonder.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  13. Mary

    Hillary, why don't you answer questions about the affair you had with the politician visiting from Venezuela in 1995?

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  14. HP Boston

    Madame President you have fought the fight and you are almost there.
    We have some more vetting to do on Obama He is damaging the party and we must have him out of this race pronto!
    He is devise and not to be trusted with our America.
    He will never be able to lead as he lacks judgement and tolerance.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  15. Stephanie-in-Vegas

    The Superdelegates would dumb as hell to hand over this nomination to a lying hypocrite, who would do and say anything to get what she wants.....Again, with her this election is not about the American People, it's about her and good ole Bubba and the legacy they hope to extend with this presidency.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  16. farley

    I think Obama already closed the door on Wright and it really shows the power of the media if they choose to regurgitate the issue.

    Wright has a right to say whatever he wants , its the media's preroggative to decide whether to give him a voice.

    Its really Obama's prerogative to come up with a new policy announcement to change the paradigm of the conversation

    But if Hillary Clinton wrests the nomination by saying blue collars won't vote for him thats similar to an office hiring situation where someone says I'm not racist but I think one of my colleagues is, so we can't bring in the visbile minority because I think someone might not like him.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  17. Lonny, Seattle

    For all of you idiots that keep bringing up the Rezko stuff:

    "Here’s what happened: In 2005, Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, bid $1.65 million for a house on the south side of Chicago. According to newspaper reports, the owner was also trying to sell an undeveloped parcel of land adjacent to the property Obama was buying, and he wanted the sales of the two to close on the same day. Obama has said that he mentioned he was buying the house to a longtime political patron, Antoin (Tony) Rezko, a developer. Rezko’s wife wound up buying the lot adjacent to Obama’s. At the request of the Obamas, who were seeking a bit more space for their yard, she later sold them a 10-foot wide strip, or about one-sixth, of her land. The Obamas paid $104,500 for it, or about one-sixth of what Mrs. Rezko had paid for the entire property. "

    Thats from Factcheck.org

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  18. Lucy Windy Chicago, IL

    Obama has Rev. Wright

    Clinton has White Water, Monica, Bosnia, travelgate, Paul, Penn etc. Now the holiday on the gas tax? So we can all pay more in the Fall, have unsafe roads and the loss of 370,000 job in road construction. Hillary did you go to college? Hillary is a joke to all. Go back to your trailer park.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  19. becky

    I just wish Hillary and the Media would "SHUT UP" over this crap.
    When in our lifetime did you ever think someone would be racked through the coals over someone else statements. If that is the case then a whole lot of church goes have some answering to do to me.

    April 30, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  20. Eric



    April 30, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  21. Elizabeth

    I find it outrageous and offensive that a sitting president committed perjury, committed lewd and immoral acts in the White House and lied to the American people about it. WIll she denounce Bill Clinton? After all, you do get to choose your husband. Hillary has many fine qualities. Why doesn't she just run on her experience and stop hypocritically attacking Obama ? Please stick to the issues!

    April 30, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  22. Fed Up

    Hillary said she would have left the church because it was unethical. Why did she stay with Bill then?

    April 30, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  23. Peter, DC transplant

    Go Hillary! I always knew you had the stones to criticize the republicans and then take the same arguments for your benefit! What the rest of the world fails to grasp, is that you don't think its wrong that the republicans have seized on this politically, its that you think you can do it better! So you scold them, and then make it all your own! Brilliant! Boy, sure can't wait to see what she'll repudiate/embrace next!

    April 30, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  24. seal

    why has she all over changed her tone about Wright? I think she should first tell us more about this ´Peter Paul Hillary Clinton ´ issue

    google.... (peter paul Hillary Clinton)

    April 30, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  25. Paulinus, Canada

    This is a ploy by Hillary to get a retaliation from Rev Wright, in order to blemish Obama

    April 30, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
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