June 25th, 2008
04:45 PM ET
14 years ago

Nader: Obama trying to 'talk white'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/25/art.nader.gi.jpg caption="Nader is taking heat for his latest comments."](CNN) - Ralph Nader's presidential candidacy has received little media attention, but his latest critique of Barack Obama has come under fire for it's seemingly racial overtones.

Speaking with Colorado's Rocky Mountain News, Nader accused Obama of attempting to both "talk white" and appeal to "white guilt" in his quest to win the White House.

"There's only one thing different about Barack Obama when it comes to being a Democratic presidential candidate. He's half African-American," Nader told the paper in comments published Tuesday. "Whether that will make any difference, I don't know. I haven't heard him have a strong crackdown on economic exploitation in the ghettos. Payday loans, predatory lending, asbestos, lead. What's keeping him from doing that? Is it because he wants to talk white? He doesn't want to appear like Jesse Jackson? We'll see all that play out in the next few months and if he gets elected afterwards."

Obama's presidential campaign called those comments disappointing, and his communication's director, Robert Gibbs, said Tuesday they were "reprehensible and basically delusional."

"I don't think he's spent a lot of time looking at the record of Barack Obama," Gibbs said on MSNBC.

Nader, the longtime consumer advocate who was blamed by many Democrats for Al Gore’s loss in the 2000 presidential election, said Obama's top issue should be poverty in America, given his racial heritage.

Watch: Why is Nader running for president

Full story

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Ralph Nader
soundoff (284 Responses)
  1. Linda Esen

    LOL ; does he know that noooobody takes hime seriously....serioulsy tho

    June 25, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  2. Teri

    Nader has a right to say anything he wants- remember free speech?
    Obama supporters- you are supposed to disagree but not try to shut him up- that is the American way.
    And, why are you so afraid of a little criticism? You say your candidate is tough- so, can't he handle it?

    June 25, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  3. pam Eugene OR

    Nader, you are not relevant. so please hush!
    Is it a really slow news day CNN?
    On another subject: I just made my first and last contribution to Hillary Clinton. It actually felt pretty good. I did it because Barack asked me to. I still sent an equal amount to Obama. I have no interest in helping Hillary repay her personal debt but the vendors must be paid now.

    June 25, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  4. TGP

    Wow Ralph finally got it right....Obama is playing on white guilt!

    June 25, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  5. addis - observer

    ... not surprised!... "America has got Idiots" ...

    June 25, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  6. Generation X

    Operation Chaos = PUMA (Poor uneducated miserable adults)

    Nader is just like McCain = old and out of touch with the American people, it is time for a change. NOT THIS TIME!!!

    June 25, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  7. Ken Pittsburgh

    First there is Karl Rove saying that Obama is a county club snob little to forget that Pbama up to a few years ago would have to enter a counrty thur the back door and now we have Nader saying something this dumb, this must be the only way that h e can keep his name in the news so far you can not find in this election cycle without a flashlight,a map,both hands and radar.

    June 25, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  8. newbies don't know any better

    ONLY PRO- Obama comments are allowed and seen as truth.

    Any other comments or critcism are disappointing at best or RACIST at worse.

    The hypocritical pandering of the Obama campaign for their lying, divisive candidate who HAS literally done nothing for his country.

    Yet he presents himself as having perfect judgement and perfect insight.

    Obama is the only DEMocrat I have not been able to vote for in the last 35 years.

    That is how UNappealing his tactics of filthy lies and vulgar untrue attacks has been.

    June 25, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  9. Diane

    Nader is about as old as McCain and about as nutty. Can't understand why he tries to get into every election. What's his purpose in this? GET REAL!!

    June 25, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
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