March 28th, 2008
08:41 AM ET
14 years ago

Obama: Had Wright not retired, I'd have left church


Watch parts of Obama’s interview on “The View”

(CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama says in an interview scheduled to air on TV Friday that he would have left his church if his pastor had not retired and had not acknowledged making comments that "deeply offended people."

Obama talked about the dispute as it continued to brew over some of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright's sermons and comments, which many viewed as anti-American and racist toward whites.

Bulletins from Chicago's Trinity United Church of Christ in 2007 include comments - reprinted from other sources - that maintain South Africa and Israel worked on "an ethnic bomb that kills blacks and Arabs." They also quote a historian who said that "what the Zionist Jews did to the Palestinians is worse than what the Nazis did to the Jews."

The articles appeared in a church bulletin section called the "Pastor's Page," and include one that originally ran in The Los Angeles Times. That article was written by a senior official with Hamas, which the U.S. government considers a terrorist organization.

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soundoff (168 Responses)
  1. keith

    Hold up.

    The bulletin in question, July 10 and 22, he WASN'T in Church those weeks.

    As a matter of fact, on July 22nd he was on a campaign stop in Florida. There is video to prove it. He didn't even see those bulletins.

    Hell, I don't read all of my bulletins when I go to church.

    Come on CNN, be honest and start reporting on the other candidates "spiritual advisors". You can start with Hillary's "The Family" cult and McCain's Hagee and Parsley.

    Why is the AA preacher gettting worse treatment in the press than what Falwell and other conservatives preachers said about Americans who suffered deserved 9/11 and Katrina for immorality?

    Of course, I won't hold my breath for you printing these fact or looking into it.

    March 28, 2008 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  2. AJ

    What a liar. Obama had 20 years to leave the church and he stayed and listened to the racist, anti-american garbage spewed from the pulpit. Obama will get beat in the GE and I will do anything I can to help defeat him. I have been a democrat for almost 20 years but will take great pleasure in voting for McCain if Obama is the nominee.

    March 28, 2008 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  3. Prema

    When did he plan to Quit ????? if he did not retire !!!!!!! Is it because he is the presidential candidate now???? What happened for the last 20 years??? His preaching was Ok ???? What is wrong with this attitude ???? this is very fishy to me. To get the presidential nomination this guy will do anything ??? No moral values. It was ok all these years and is not ok??? I could throw up as America 45% behind this type of a guy to rule our great nation who says will unite the country. Please all press cre wake up! Anderson cooper/ L.King/King/Blitzer.....& MSNBC

    March 28, 2008 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  4. Jessica

    He is absolutely full of it! Are we really supposed to believe this? He had every opportunity in the world to leave the church in the last 20 years but CHOSE to stay. Of course it is convenient to say that you would leave now!

    March 28, 2008 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  5. Craig TX

    Sure you would have.

    March 28, 2008 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  6. ernest

    i think what he is trying to say is had the videos not come out he will not have been forced to make that speech, if he really believed half the crap he was feeding us he will have given the speech to his church years ago when he had no political ambition, Americans are too easily duped, first GW Bush than another lightweight Obama, we deserve whatever we get because we vote based on soundbites and you have media like MSNBC who should put a disclaimer on every show saying :Paid for by OBama for president:" How sad

    March 28, 2008 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  7. sparraguslover

    liar liar liar. you are only saying that because you were cuaght on your lies.


    Hillary or McCain

    March 28, 2008 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  8. thelma nashville tn.

    well hilliary is one more reason you should stop this circus and drop out of this race because theres no way you will beat obama. you have thrown everything at him includeing the kitchen sink and he is still standing

    March 28, 2008 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  9. Dennis Philadelphia

    I think It would be smart of Sen. Obama to have a sit down with his new pastor and see what his views are concerning Isreal, white america, Italians, and other issues that could effect him in the general election. If he doesnt feel comfortable after the meeting then he should move his membership to another place of worship. It's sad when the church can't focus on spiritual things. I'm sure this church does a lot of good things for the community, but it seems like the church only makes headlines when its involved in something stupid.

    March 28, 2008 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  10. Slept in Church for 20 years

    'Honest officer, I was going to slow down at the next stop sign!!!"

    He should have quit this church the FIRST time Wright used HATE SPEECH.

    It's like asking a 4 year old with chocolate all over his face if he has been in the candy.....


    March 28, 2008 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  11. bryen

    "I cannot disown Pastor Wright".... hmmmm

    March 28, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  12. Black N White Cookie

    Are you kidding me NOT Mr. " I can no more denounce Rev. Wright no more than I can my grandmother" Obama is such a double talker. He is only doing this because he under so much pressure from the back lash of this...Rev. Wright is still a part of the church and still has some say in the church because he is still considered Sr. Pastor. So the question is when will he leave the church?

    March 28, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  13. Obama all the way...

    Haven't we had enough of this drivel already?? It's been asked AND answered. Move on...

    I am looking forward to letting Obama focus on the issues...and for him to become the nomimee...

    Wright isn't running, but OBAMA is and he is an honest, transparent man..we need him!!!

    I'll take Barack over Hillary...any day of the week!!!

    March 28, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  14. Joe Tester

    Now that BHO wants both ways again: He would have left his church had his mentor and hatemonger for 20 years stayed, didn't he just say, in his so aclaimed speech, he could not disown his mentor Wright, just as he cannot disown his white grandmother? Does he disown his mentor or not? Another proof of his hypocrisy, and phony claims.

    March 28, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  15. kathy in ohio

    I think the correction is; since you found out about my church and its teaching I had no choice but to make this statement. I only did this so I can get the vote of some many that my beliefs have offended. Obama’s family has made this election about race and in all of their speeches its not so much for the good of our country but more for the black community and it being their time and for us to support this.

    March 28, 2008 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  16. Mike

    He's starting to sound like clinton..."I would have"...after the fact...sad

    March 28, 2008 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  17. Independant

    -–Sure he would have !!!!!!!!!!!!!---

    March 28, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  18. Jdona

    Well people, now you know why Obama sat in the pews for twenty years. He was waiting on Wright to RETIRE! LOL! This is the single most obvious political pandering I have ever seen. Talk about finesse!

    March 28, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
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