(CNN) — The Rev. Jesse Jackson issued an apology to Barack Obama Wednesday for making what he called a "crude and hurtful" remark about the Illinois senator's recent comments directed toward some members of the black community.
According to Jackson, a Fox News microphone picked up comments he meant to deliver privately that seemed to disparage the presumptive Democratic nominee for appearing to lecture the black community on morality.
Jackson, who has endorsed Obama, didn't elaborate on the context of his remarks, except to say he was trying to explain that Obama was hurting his relationship with black voters by recently conducting "moral" lectures at African-American churches.
Watch: Jackson apologizes to Obama
Jackson's apology came a few hours before Fox News planned to air the remarks.
Speaking to CNN Wednesday, Jackson said he feels "very distressed" over the comments.
"This is a sound bite in a broader conversation about urban policy and racial disparities. I feel very distressed because I'm supportive of this campaign and with the senator, what he has done and is doing," he said. "I said he comes down as speaking down to black people. The moral message must be a much broader message. What we need really is racial justice and urban policy and jobs and health care. That's a range of issues on the menu.
"Then I said something I regret was crude. It was very private. And very much a sound bite," he also said.
In a statement issued earlier Wednesday to CNN, Jackson said, "For any harm or hurt that this hot mic private conversation may have caused, I apologize. My support for Senator Obama’s campaign is wide, deep and unequivocal. I cherish this redemptive and historical moment."
Over the course of the campaign season, Obama has at times directed criticism directly to the black community, most sharply in a Chicago speech on Father's Day that criticized some men for failing in their duties as parents.
"They have abandoned their responsibilities, acting like boys instead of men. And the foundations of our families are weaker because of it," Obama said then.
"You and I know how true this is in the African-American community. We know that more than half of all black children live in single-parent households, a number that has doubled — doubled — since we were children. We know the statistics: that children who grow up without a father are five times more likely to live in poverty and commit crime, nine times more likely to drop out of schools and twenty times more likely to end up in prison," he also said.
The Obama campaign had no immediate comment.
A positive point for Barack Obama – miffing Jesse Jackson.
What eaxctly did Mr. Jackson say?
Not an issue. You are trying to make it one. LET IT GO...There has to be something better to report. If not start doing like every other company and lay some of the workers off who write these stupid articles.
Jesse probably will vote for McCain behind the booth.
Why isn't CNN publishing what Jackson said about Obama?
If it were a white person making a negative comment, you would quote it in the press over and over. But,. oh no, it was said by a black person. So you don't print what was said. No where do I read what he actually said. A very continuing sad double standard. Tell us what he said!!
How could Mr. Adultery Jessie Jackson have any remarks about anybody. He need to clean his own house before he remark on somebody house... This is all the medial need to hear, they will spin this like eggs boiling in hot water....
Obama Keep Your head up...
Methinks someone is jealous of another's success. Now, Jackson looks petty and immature.
Jessie Jackson is known for putting his foot in his mouth. Remember when he made the infamous "Hymietown" remark when he ran for president in 1984? Mr. Jackson really needs to sit down.
I don't see a problem with telling dead beat dads to step up. He should be Thanked!
Fox news people are such piece's of crap, they are worse than the paparazzi, god i hope their ratings plumet.
Typical. Afterall, I am sure Jesse is jealous after all of his failed attempts at a party nomination. Also, why should a group be responsible for themselves when welfare and crutches from people like Jesse and Uncle Al exist?
Thank you Obama for holding people accountable!
The truth hurts.
WELL WHAT DID HE SAY???
Barack was right about his comments. It was "tough love." Fathers need to step up and take responsibility. Jesse should have been preaching this SAME message.
If only Obama had a different stand on abortion he would be an excellent candidate.
Jesse, please chill.
Everything that Obama said is true! Why didn't Jesse say it a long time ago? Or is he upset that he didn't say it first? I don't know, but this is the second time Jesse got caught saying something that he thought no one would hear?
Can't we keep this conversation in the family? I agree that there are challenges in the African-American community that are unparalleled in other communities. The solutions need to rise out of the community and not necessarily from the government.
I don't believe it! Jesse Jackson apologizes for something! Is this a sign of the apocalypse?!
Someone needs to lecture Obama.
Does it really matter? They both are totally unqualified to be President of this great Country.
Leave it to Jackson to call Obama's success a "redemptive" moment.
He just can't let it go. As long as there are people like him around, rascism will live on. Obama is going out of his way to keep race out of this. I commend him for that.
Hmmm...listening to the big deal CNN is making of this, makes me put CNN's professionalism in question, too ...
An apology. Hmm. Maybe he should clue Al Sharpton in on how those things work.