June 21st, 2008
11:00 AM ET
12 years ago

Obama: 'They're going to try to make you afraid of me'

ALT TEXT

Obama: GOP will say ‘And did I mention he’s black?’" Photo credit: CNN.

JACKSONVILLE, Florida (CNN) - Barack Obama told supporters that Republicans will “try to make you afraid of me” in remarks he made Friday at a Florida fundraiser.

"The choice is clear. Most of all we can choose between hope and fear. It is going to be very difficult for Republicans to run on their stewardship of the economy or their outstanding foreign policy.

“We know what kind of campaign they’re going to run,” said the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee. “They’re going to try to make you afraid. They’re going to try to make you afraid of me. ‘He’s young and inexperienced and he’s got a funny name. And did I mention he’s black?’"

In similar comments at a Chicago fundraiser last Thursday, Obama told supporters that Republicans would try to portray both him and his wife Michelle as "scary."

"They’re going to try to make me into a scary guy,” he said last week. “They’re even trying to make Michelle into a scary person. Right?" And so that drumbeat – 'we’re not sure if he’s patriotic or not; we’re not sure if he is too black.'

"I don’t know, before I wasn’t black enough," said Obama. "'Now he might be too black. We don’t know whether he’s going to socialize – well, who knows what.'"

Last week, the Illinois senator’s campaign launched a Web site to directly respond to and discredit Internet rumors about him and his wife that have dogged his presidential effort.

soundoff (214 Responses)
  1. Reggie

    A lot of people are afraid of Obama. He's lacks the experience necessary to be president of the U.S.

    June 20, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  2. Bob

    Thank god I have a good accountant if this yahoo gets in....... For all us so called "Rich People" 250K or above . Come Jan 1 I will be upping the old defered compensation package and using every tax loop hole known to man to get below the magic number. I refuse to let my hard earned money go to some fool who cant afford his mortage or some BS social programs for the inner city.

    Call me racist or selfish if you want ....... This is suppose to be the country where hard work pays off. I dont call getting taxed at %40 a reward. Democrats breed laziness, no responsibilty and no accountability.

    For all you uneducated whining about not having the oppurtunity to go to college join the military they will pay for it.

    June 20, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  3. CMS

    Why is it anytime he is legitmately criticized either he is a victim or not his fault? Its starting to stack up to look like it might actually be his judgement....oh wait, he isnt responsible for that either.

    If he were sincere about his apology to the two Muslim women who wore headscarfs to his rally and were excluded from the podium shot, he would have had them prominently featured in his very next speech. Instead he blasts his volunteers as being discriminatory and still hasnt had the women in a podium shot out of fear for being seen as sympathetic to Muslims.

    As they say, "the fish stinks from the head...."

    June 20, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  4. mei

    Republicans are really good at getting useless labels to stick.

    June 20, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  5. Ben

    Will we ever have a mexican,indian,chinese,,japanise,jew,armenian,turquish,italian,etc,
    for president? Perhaps not. Why not? Because they all have one thing in common.They are all members of minority groups.aren't they tired of just being simply background figures for opinion polls.
    X% of coreans will vote for Z candidate. X% of jews will vote for Z candidate, and on and on.
    This the first time in our history someone of a minority race has the chance to break the whites only monoploly. Hillary has done much to let small girls know they too have a chancd to be president. Obama lets small children of all races know they too have the same oppertunityy. So if I were a member of any minority I would vote for Obama. Perhaps some day a mexican or a jew will become president. Being white does not make you better than anyone.being
    a christian doed not make you better either.

    June 20, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  6. Winthorp

    You know what. Let's just say, for the sake of argument, Obama, is the sneaky, underhand liar everyone who doesn't likes him claims he is. Who cares? Its politics! The point is that you chose the LEAST slimy, underhand liar.

    June 20, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  7. Moon Maiden from Lake Michigan

    DEAR OBAMA,
    I'M NOT AFRAID OF YOU. I LOVE YOUR ARROGANCE, YOUR CHARISMA, AND YOUR STRENGTH AND MICHELE. CARRY ON WITH YOUR CAMP AND LETS MAKE THE USA WHAT IS ONCE WAS AND EVEN BETTER.

    June 20, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  8. Jim Lang

    When I hear or read "elitist" and "arrogant" i hear or read "uppity." Race is a huge issue, it is the elephant in the room. Did anyone really believe that racism had been eliminated or rendered irrelevant? Any reference to America "being ready for a Black president" is a racist comment. Think about what this comment can imply: That Black people need to wait longer for white people to feel it's "time"? That Black people aren't ready yet (because of ?) to take such a leadership role? Get ready for it: This election is about racism front and center and white people who have been willfully ignorant of their white privilege are going to become mighty uncomfortable before this election ends. With Obama as president. God willing.

    June 20, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  9. Hadasha Phelps

    You know, I love Barack Obama, but I love his haters even more...

    OBAMA '08!!

    June 20, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  10. jane

    THIS SPEECH PROVES HE HAS NOTHING TO RUN ON BUT THE FACT HE IS BLACK. CRY BABY OBAMA WANTS THE AMERICAN PEOPLE TO FEEL GUILTY BECAUSE THE BLACKS HAVE BEEN MISTREATED IN THIS COUNTRY FOR HUNDREDS OF YEARS. THIS IS NOT A REASON TO VOTE FOR HIM FOR THE MOST POWERFUL JOB IN THE WORLD. I PERSONALLY WOULD SUPPORT ANY QUALIFIED PERSON BLACK, WHITE, MAN, OR WOMAN BUT OBAMA IS SIMPLY NOT QUALIFIED. HE HAS NO EXPERIENCE, NO SOLUTIIONS, HE WAS IN THE SENATE 143 DAYS BEFORE HE ANNOUNCED HE WAS GOING TO RUN. ON 130 OCCASIONS HE DID NOT SAY FOR OR AGAINST SIMPLY PRESANT. HE HAD ONE MEETING HE HAD TO RUN AND HE DIDN'T SHOW UP BECAUSE HIS CAMPAIGN SCHEDULE DIDN'T PERMIT IT. HE IS THE BIGGEST THEREFORE HE IS RUNNING SIMPLY ON THE FACT HE IS BLACK. REMEMBER HILLARY SHE ALWAYS SAID SHE WAS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT AND SHE HAPPENS TO BE A WOMAN. OBAMA SAYS HE IS A BLACK MAN RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT. HE IS THE MOST DANGEROUS KIND OF RACIST IN THE WORLD. YES THE OBAMA’S ARE SCARY
    DEMOCRATS FOR McCAIN

    June 20, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  11. FL Dem

    I'm far more afraid of McCain and his never-ending war than I am Obama! I think McCain's idea of "winning" in the middle east will break us financially just like the Soviet Union went broke and fell apart. Obama is a good man. He has my vote.

    June 20, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  12. Clinton/McCain

    You did that to yourself, buddy! lol

    June 20, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  13. CMS

    "McCain=the draft June 20th, 2008 7:05 pm ET

    Obama is right.
    It's all fear and smear from the republican machine.
    The same fearmongering used to elect Bush.
    Not this time!!"

    Isnt that what you are doing with your screen name? McCain has never advocated the draft. In fact it was democrats (charlie rangel) who last introduced a bill to enact the draft. Ironic, when you look at the facts huh?

    June 20, 2008 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  14. Mikey

    This guy will surely submarine his own campaign between now and november. CHANGE? HOW WILL YOU CHANGE? Is america in such a bad situation? No serious terror attacks since 9/11. High gas prices yes, but have you seen what other countries are paying? The gas issue and the economy issue is a WORLDWIDE issue, not a doing of our government. And you gotta be kidding me that Barack didnt know his good friend the reverend had beliefs of hatred. You zombies keep drinking the kool aid, the realist will bail you out.

    June 20, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  15. Peter E

    There he goes again, putting on the 'victim of the world' charade. It didn't work for Hillary, and it won't suit him either.

    June 20, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  16. Republicans have a place at the table with Obama

    “Republicans have a place at the table with Obama”

    Hello, I am Kevin from GA. Over the last few elections, must Democratic candidates write off my State and spend most of their time in these so called “swing states”. However, Barack Obama seems to be running for President to bring this country, The United States back together again. Over the last 7 Years, if you have not noticed, George W Bush forgot about the people that help him be elected- ME!

    George W Bush along with John McCain have misled lead many of us by sending our children to war, left many of our kids behind, and have not spent a moment of time during a fully Republican Administration- promoting the Republican agenda.

    As a registered Republican, I just want a President that believes in God, allows me to keep my guns, will keep me safe from harm, and seems to understand that life is important. I am not a Democratic. I will be voting for Barack Obama.

    Obama is the type of guy you want to have a beer with or invite over just to pick his brain. I am white, I work, I am male, and I am voting for Obama. The Republicans' forgot about ME. This year I will forget about them.

    I Love America Go Obama!

    June 20, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  17. Monica

    I was an avid Hillary supporter, but the party must stick together. Can anyone tell me specifically one lie or one sleazy tactic that Obama has used? Dislike someone for philisophical reasons or at least valid reasons. The ignorance of those who are scared, uninformed, and vocal is what tears our democracy down. Voting for McCain is like picking the high calorie, high fat food because you know what it tastes like even though it's bad for you (the continuation of bad Republican policis). Instead try the low calorie, high fiber, high protein food that's good for you. Just because it's different and may make you face some truths about your health (America's health) doesn't mean we shouldn't or don't need to do it. In fact, if we plan to survive, we have to do it! Support Obama.

    June 20, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  18. Independent-woman-4-Obama

    I see that the "hate-mongers" are alive and well, on this blog. "Arrogant"? Really? A poor black kid from a broken home that had to work his way up?

    To those who keep crying experience........ where was McCain's wisdom and experience when Bush was lying to him about the reason to go to war with Iraq?

    Where was McCain's experience & wisdom when he voted for the Bill that ALLOWED hedge funds to bet on the price of Oil, a little something called "The Enron Loophole"?

    Where was McCain's experience and the wisdom that should come with it, when he was singing "bomb. bomb, bomb Iran"?

    Where was McCain's experience and the wisdom that should come with it when he voted AGAINST some of the federal help that Katrina victims should have had?

    Where is McCain's experience and the wisdom that should come with it when he says that we can stay in Iraq for a 100 years?

    Where is McCain's experience and the wisdom that should come with it when he wants to drill on all our coasts....... even though we consumers wont see that oil for 10 or more years? Even though he can not control the price of oil?

    All of you who despise Sen. Obama are free to vote for yet ANOTHER FAILED PRESIDENT, ( I remember how you hated Gore & Kerry)....... and now look at the MESS WE ARE IN!

    ALL OF YOU "CONSERVATIVES" NEVER MENTION YOUR PLAN TO PAY OFF OUR NATIONAL DEBT OF OVER $10 TRILLION, FOR WHICH WE CAN THANK THE REPUBLICANS AND BUSH (REMEMBER THE DEMS HAVE ONLY HAD CONTROL OF CONGRESS FOR JUST BARELY TWO YEARS).

    The debt we owe mostly to Saudi Arabia, Dubai and CHINA! Thanks Republicans!

    June 20, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  19. slick and manipulative

    You lie very easily and never think twice about the contradiction.

    That is why I fear you.

    Cocky, arrogant, elitist, swaggering, jeering and mocking... the same as BUSH.

    But... you do it so much smoother and with finesse... the sophisticated man's duplicitous liar.

    I am too smart for your slick namipulation.

    June 20, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  20. Peter E

    Considering all the one-sided coverage the Obama New Network keeps giving him I don't think he can truly claim to be a 'victim' of any fear-mongering.

    June 20, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  21. Z

    "And did I mention he was black?"

    What a racial statement that is. Obama you are a joke!!

    Yes you are black, inexperienced and have funny name. I am glad you realize that you socialist pig!!!!!!

    Democrats that are for Obama know that the fold has scattered. I think it funny that Democrats for Obama keep yelling for the Dems to unite. I welcome the Democrats that are voting for McCain. Those of you following Obama need to follow your fellow Dems voting for McCain.

    Thanks to all the Democrats that are giving McCain your vote. I respect you for that and I am relieved to know that you see Obama for what he is. It has nothing to do regarding Republicans or Democrats what it does have to do with is protecting our country from a tyrant such as Obama!

    McCain 2008

    June 20, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  22. Brian

    Yes they are. Many in the christian community think he may be the antichrist of scripture. The scarest thing to me however is the number of people who will vote for him because of his color and not his politics or lack thereof...

    June 20, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  23. No McCain in 08

    Wake up America! Stop falling for the GOP smear campaign. They do it every four years because they have no real grasp on how to fix the problems that face this country. Obviously, that is how we got G. W. Bush, who will go down in history as one of the worst presidents ever. Obama all the way!!!!

    June 20, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  24. Monica

    Add an "e" to policies for me please!

    June 20, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  25. Tom

    Mr. Obama – you (and for that matter your wife) are a lot of things, some good, some bad but most are just silly and naive. So no, no one's afraid of you or your wife. Disgusted with YOUR race baiting that you continue to do, angry with the garbage you've pulled ever since your days in Chicago right up to these quotes, confused by your constant flip flopping on issues, amazed at your continuing lack of ability to make decisions (even minor ones) and repulsed by the fact that you are trying to make it into the white house based primarily upon the color of your skin. The republicans didn't bring this up, YOU did in this quote and in the primaries. That's why I voted for Hillary and why I'll vote for McCain. Not because you're scary, not because you're black or brown or pink or orange or blue or red but because you disgust me with your empty rhetoric and constant race baiting, your sarcasm and arrogance and willingness to personally demean (through your campaign of course) anyone who disagrees and your supporters following suit. Your the worst kind of old school politician that you pretend to abhor. You are a poor example of a politician and an even worse example of a human being.

    June 20, 2008 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
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