July 13th, 2008
05:30 PM ET
6 years ago

Obama not worried he's too preachy

Barack Obama says he does not worry about coming off as too preachy in his speeches.
Barack Obama says he does not worry about coming off as too preachy in his speeches.

SAN DIEGO, California (CNN) – Barack Obama says he hasn’t spoken to Rev. Jesse Jackson since the pastor was caught by an open mic saying that Obama is “talking down to black people,” and using a vulgar expression to vent his feelings about the candidate.

“I had spoken to him before, a few days before,” Obama told a gaggle of reporters aboard his campaign plane, “and we had actually discussed some of the concerns he had raised about my fatherhood speech.”

Obama spoke at an African-American church on Father’s Day and took black absentee fathers to task for shirking their responsibilities.

“I told [Jackson] that I absolutely believe that we have structural inequalities in this country that have to be dealt with,” said Obama. “We also have to recognize that there is a particular problem when more than a half of African-American children are growing up without a father in the house and often times not even knowing their father.”

“That is a problem and I won’t back up one bit in asserting that that’s a problem that we have to be honest about,” he added.

Asked how Jackson replied, Obama told CNN, “I think it would be hard for him to disagree with that since many of the things I have said are the things that he has said in the past.”

When a reporter remarked that bad fathering isn’t something that can be fixed by a federal policy, Obama responded that his June speech sparked a conversation and has given him “something of a bully pulpit.”

“I do think part of the role of president is to offer his or her opinions about critical issues, not all of which can be solved by government, but make a big difference in the quality of our society. That doesn’t mean that we’re going to solve these problems overnight, but I’d like to think that if a president says that something’s important, that some people might pay some attention.”

But does he worry about coming off as too preachy?

“No.”


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (538 Responses)
  1. ARE-YOU-FOR-REAL

    With that type of language from the Rev. Jessie Jackson. The Rev. should be removed from his name.

    July 13, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  2. The True IS!!!!!!

    Mr Obama spoke at an African-American church on Father’s Day and took black absentee fathers to task for shirking their responsibilities.
    I think the timing was appropriate…..On father's day…….. I'm sorry Mr Jackson that is not coming down on Black men it is the truth…. ..When more than a half of African-American children are growing up without a father in the house and often times not even knowing their father.”
    it is a Problem……. Now if you Mr Jackson have an agenda to discuss with black men feel free to so do .*****************TO LISA Jesse Jackson had a very close relationship with Bill Clinton, they were like best friends*********,LIKE 2 peas In a pot they both CHEATED on their WIVES!!! CASE CLOSED!!!! Obama 08/201

    July 13, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  3. Allen

    Not all presidents are going to tell us what we want to hear just for the vote. I commend Obama for speaking his mind, thats what America is all about. Free speach.

    The truth hurts, deal with it.

    July 13, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  4. Clinton/McCain

    Yes, Obama IS too preachy. I've noticed it and many of my friends have commented about this. He DOES seem more like a preacher and that's not good.

    July 13, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  5. Marie Everett

    Was there an improvement in the social position of black parenting in Chicago while he was "fixing everything there"? I don't think so, as Chicago is still at the top of the heap in fatherless families as well as crime. Obama, drop out of the race for President; you simply don't know what you are talking about and the intelligent people of our country don't want you. You will say anything. You're just a talker, not a doer.

    July 13, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  6. Storm

    It's nice that Obama is concerned about this issue, but if any one of a different color would have said the same thing it would have been broadcast nationally as racists. The divide keeps getting wider.

    July 13, 2008 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  7. kayla

    to all you obama haters, CHANGE IS GONNA COME'! whether you want to or not. Obama o8

    July 13, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  8. Mike

    Maybe the media should give McCain the same air time they do Obama. As a dem I am backing McCain. I do not trust Obama and he has zero experience. And he sounds more like a preacher then a person running for office. I would like to see him and McCain in a town hall meeting because Obama would show that as a cand. he has nothing to say that made any sense. He talks alot but no answers or plan for this country. McCain has this dems vote. And many more dems are feeling the same.

    July 13, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  9. Sue

    Angela McKinney for VP!!

    July 13, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  10. Independent White Woman For Obama

    Obama 08/2012

    July 13, 2008 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  11. DflateMacsStr8TalkXpress: Econ MIA, AWOL on facts, POW on the truth

    Regardless of your race or politics, this is square one of many in the foundation of personal responsibility. Jesse Jackson doesn't understand because his thinking and methods are limited and outdated, but government can only provide incentives once the individual meets or exceeds his own path of self-reliance toward a specific predetermined goal.

    July 13, 2008 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  12. Sean from Orlando

    At last, I agree with Obama on something. Let him ramble all he wants to and preach his memorized speaches that were all written by someone else. What Obama needs to be worried about his the voters who had their votes stolen by the DNC that he has yet to be able to switch to his side. His lies through recent flip-flops on key issues, and his support of the Bush wire-tapping policy that not even Clinton or McCain supported and yet he voted for, a policy the infrindges on the privacy rights of all American's. Through his lies and support of Bush policy plus his change in tone on the war, I have even seen people that were going to vote for him that do not plan on it now. Then there is the issue of the fact that the people know what VP they want and in FL and MI where he refused to support voters rights because he would have lost, the people know and are fully ready to vote McCain to take their voice back from Obama and the DNC.

    July 13, 2008 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  13. Isidoro from Germany

    I wonder sometimes that lot of people make always stupid comments which have nothing constructive but only hatrad! ...just because Hillary lost the game! Come on, let´s talk issues with fairness and fair play!!!

    July 13, 2008 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  14. Independent White Woman For Obama

    INDEPENDENT WHITE WOMAN for OBAMA Mr Obama spoke at an African-American church on Father’s Day and took black absentee fathers to task for shirking their responsibilities.
    I think the timing was appropriate…..On father's day…….. I'm sorry Mr Jackson that is not coming down on Black men it is the truth…. ..When more than a half of African-American children are growing up without a father in the house and often times not even knowing their father.”
    it is a Problem……. Now if you Mr Jackson have an agenda to discuss with black men feel free to so do .*****************TO LISA Jesse Jackson had a very close relationship with Bill Clinton, they were like best friends*********,LIKE 2 peas In a pot they both CHEATED on their WIVES!!! CASE CLOSED!!!! Obama 08/2012

    July 13, 2008 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  15. IfleftiswrongthenIdontwant2beright

    Jessie Jackson was wrong to express his thoughts the way that he did because is a Reverend. It is his right to disagree with Senator Obama in regards to faith based imitatives. However, he could have been more effective and professional just by talking to Senator Obama. If Mr. Jackson's son is working so close with Senator Obama, I am sure Mr. Jackson has his telephone number... He had the number to call and apologize.

    Senator Obama is not too preachy. There are always more than way solution to every problem or concern. Unfortunately for Senator Obama, it is darn if you do and darn if you don't.

    July 13, 2008 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  16. Fitz

    I can't believe the primaries are over with and I am reading the same type of comments from the same type of people as before. People are just looking for a reason any reason to criticize Obama. Go criticize McCain and you can also attribute alot of this sentiment to your gal Hillary.

    We need someone in higher office who will tackle some of these issues ok, when you move past Oil and tthings that control our country, it would be nice to have a people's president for a change.

    July 13, 2008 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  17. Aaron from North Carolina

    it's not common sense...obama is right..and is right on just about every other issue we face..i'm not a smart man.. but i have common sense..and i would be in favor of every american taking an i.q test before they are allowed to vote...i mean come on... look who WE "the people" voted in 2x's...in the last 8 years...heres a piece of advice...stop reading JUST the caption and headlines...and read the subject it's pertaining..and on a second note...fox news is one of the most BIASED new brodcastors i've ever known...

    July 13, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  18. Sandy

    I agree with Mr. Obama 100%. Just because a man has trouble finding work is NO REASON to not a part of his family. I'm in the military and I still see men with children whose lives they're not a part of. Sure they send a check every month but that still does not make up for the fact that he's not there.

    July 13, 2008 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  19. Griff

    Your an Idiot Obama... Come on CNN how can you support this Guy, who is on the Ferris Wheel most of the time. Riding the Big Dipper; the rest of the time.. Or maybe an Odd ride on the Dodg, em's... Now they want to talk to Obama about Candian Oil... he is against NAFTA. Well not now! The Flibbety Gibet... Now he's flipped again. He's Liar, a Cheat, What else CNN????

    July 13, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  20. linwalk

    Obama has said nothing wrong. All the negative comments below are from Hillary supporters.

    Jesse can't talk...what about his love child. OPPS...absent t father

    July 13, 2008 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  21. Dorothy, White Salmon, Wa

    Obama isn't saying anything that Jesse Jackson or Bill Cosby have said in the past and he is completely right – the black community should listen to him. However, I don't like the guy – I don't trust him. He wants to take over the Democrat National Convention and not allow Hillary's name to even be entered with all her delegates who voted for her. He bought SuperDelegates and maybe he is afraid that some of them will vote for Hillary and she will end up with the nomination. Well, that is the only way a Democrat will get my vote.

    I don't want another arrogant president. I would rather take my chances with John McCain.

    July 13, 2008 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  22. Poll This!

    No gary, he isn't, you misguided little republican. Not that there's anything wrong with being a muslim, or knowing them, or talking with them. But you and people like you calling him that is like me calling you a Jehova's witness, just for fun. Empty, non-credible name calling.

    July 13, 2008 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  23. BIFF HUSSEIN BIFFINGTON

    BIFF HUSSEIN BIFFINGTON

    VOTE 4 obama

    VOTE 4 obama

    VOTE 4 obama

    VOTE 4 obama

    Obama 08/2012

    July 13, 2008 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  24. Independent White Woman For Obama

    YES!!!!!

    July 13, 2008 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  25. Judy Barnett

    I'm glad to see all blacks aren't for Obama, i think we have a ego-monster here, young, black, half-black that make a drifferent here really, i don't think most hard working black care really, just like hard working whites, trying to raise a family, jobs, homes, gas, cost of living, oil sky-high, gas sky-high, medical, now really, maybe this is why people white, blacks voted Hillary, this playing games isn't right, votes, people want answers and they want a strong leader, not words of others, he might be black and that's great, however the American people wants answers this time, he has covered alot to come up with nothing so far.

    July 13, 2008 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
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