June 30th, 2008
02:16 PM ET
15 years ago

Obama responds to attacks on his patriotism

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/06/30/campaign.wrap/art.obama.ap.jpg caption="Sen. Barack Obama's speech on patriotism comes days before the Fourth of July."](CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama defended his patriotism Monday, telling a crowd in Independence, Missouri, that his "deep and abiding love for this country" is the reason he is running for president.

"At certain times over the last 16 months, I have found, for the first time, my patriotism challenged - at times as a result of my own carelessness, more often as a result of the desire by some to score political points and raise fears and doubts about who I am and what I stand for," he said in President Harry Truman's hometown, just days before the Fourth of July.

Obama vowed to never question the patriotism of others in the campaign, adding "I will not stand idly by when I hear others question mine."

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (167 Responses)
  1. Ken Pittsburgh

    I was not question about my Patriotism when I was drafted and served Obama has as much military expericence as say a Dick Cheny

    June 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  2. sacto joe

    BEWARE!!!
    A lot of NEOCONS posing as Clinton or Obama supporters are posting hate mail. They're trying to drive a wedge between us!
    RESIST THE NEOCON HATE MACHINE!

    June 30, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  3. Native-Floridian

    Hey CNN, What's with the baby face picture of Obama? Maybe he's too young to be president.
    By the way, who writes Obama's speeches?
    Obama's patriotism is in question when he sits in a church for 20 years that spits out hate of the United States.
    I do not believe he is ready to be president. He's got too thin of a resume. Being a community organizer is not qualifications to be President.
    MB, you've got it wrong with McCain saying that we will be in Iraq for 100 years. That's an Obama smear attack. Get your facts right. You should research Obama's record before you attack the other guy. Look at your Obama Obamanet or is that raisenettet?

    June 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  4. citizen

    It's funny that Obama feels so insecure on this issue that he needs to come out and defend himself against "attacks" McCain hasn't even leveled against him.

    June 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  5. Danel

    Marilyn and Vomitus: Are you better off now than 4 years ago? That must explains why you want 4 more years.

    June 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  6. The T

    Go ahead Repub, look at the score broad...looks like old man Mc is going down. Real America who love this country and not the LOBBIESt sees that Sen. Obama is a real America....PERIOD

    June 30, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  7. Down with Obama

    Hey listen sascto joe...we are not Republicans posting as Clinton supporters. We are DEMOCRATS that will NOT be voting for the SELECTED pick by the DNC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Millions of us will be voting for McCain, writing in Hillary or voting for a third party candidate!!!!!!!!!

    Get over your lies about who we are!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Obama has about as much patriotism for the US as Osama does!!!!!!!!!

    June 30, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  8. Mike H

    An American Patriot is one who defends the Constitution against enemies from within and without the nation. Obama seems to be such a patriot.

    Those who trashed our constitutional guarantees and rights, Gonzales, Rove, Cheney, they are the traitors. Also, anyone who helps the Israeli Lobby manipulate this country into a war with Iran is a traitor.

    June 30, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  9. Chris

    It's sad that any American , let alone a Prsidential Candidate has to "prove" their patriotism.

    Smears/distractions have really hurt this country

    Obama '08

    June 30, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  10. starr

    Stand up for what you beleive Mr. Obama. I beleive you are going to be the next president, I beleive that you will do just as good of a job or better, I beleive that you love this country. Don't even play into the ramblings of mccain or anyone else ...... God Bless you!!!!!!

    June 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  11. Shelly in IL

    I have to say, CNN, this guy is working hard...lol

    June 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  12. therealist

    Obama said that his "deep and abiding love for this country" is the reason he is running for president.

    WHAT!? This man really will say anything to get elected!!

    June 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  13. jack

    You can always spot the PHONY PATRIOTS. They are the ones who wear little flags in their lapels and boast of their patriotism, but when ask "did you serve? And what branch?" that sheepish grin comes over their face and all you hear are the excueses.

    Bring back the draft.

    Serve in uniform, or as a "civil worker". But everyone owes their country 6 years of service.

    Only then can we have the "Patriot" discussion.

    June 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  14. Norma

    McCain likes to use his military service for political gain..
    Thats the only thing he runs on. Doesn't qualify him to be president and sure as hell doesn't make him more patriotic.

    "I will not stand idly by when I hear others question mine."
    You go Obama, don't let the republicans question it..

    As a military wife I say " Stop using the military for political purposes"

    June 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  15. Vanessa

    You left out the best part of the speech and the best aspect. The quote by Mark Twain, "Patriotism is supporting your country all the time and supporting your government when it deserves it." As a nation we need to uphold the ideals of America and if need be educate ourselves on what American ideals are because when you hear folks saying you aren't a patriot because you hold your government to those ideals, you can't help but to wonder how do tthese so-called patriots think we got this far in the first place? From Shay's Rebellion to Abu Grahibb, we have called on America to deliver on its promise and we should never stop.

    Good on Obama for inspiring us. God bless him!! God bless America!!

    June 30, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  16. gary

    TIME WILL TELL.

    June 30, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  17. Julie

    So will he keep his pledge to not question someone's patriotism just like he kept his pledge about public financing?

    June 30, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  18. Casey in CA.

    Surely the American public has learn enough in 8 years to not fall for the GOPs tired old politics of fear and shame.... the accusations of "you're not patriotic" and "terrorists will come" are more of the same.

    NO BUSH THIRD TERM

    Hello? America? Are you better off today than 8 years ago?

    June 30, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  19. Mike - Texas

    .
    Now he tries to redifine patriotism.

    Just like a liberal, if you don't fit the mold, you change the mold to fit you!

    Since he keeps bringing it up, he must be insecure about his own patriotism!! In other words he is having to prove it to himself that he is patriotic! NOT

    .

    June 30, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  20. Sue

    YES, OBAMA IN YOUR BOOK YOU DID SAY YOU WOULD ALWAYS TAKE THE MUSLIM SIDE. . . THAT DOES NOT SOUND LIKE PATRIOTISM TO THE U.S . TO ME.

    June 30, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  21. WoMeN4McCain

    I'm a Republican supporting McCain and I would never question his patriotism. His fellow democrats who are doing it need to take a look at themselves and their motives for trying to divide their own party. They are mean, selfish whiners who are making everyone sick. Especially that puma bunch or whatever they are calling themselves. News Flash....Puma Pac...the republicans don't want or need your support. You are nothing but people who thrive on stirring up trouble and you should all be taken to an island somewhere and dropped off and left there. You abandon your party cause you don't get your way like little babies....why would we want you. First sign things don't go your way, you'll be doing the same thing again. GROW UP

    June 30, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  22. Obama-Junkie, IL

    I approach negativity with positivity, pessimism with optimism, and hate with love.

    By staying positive and strong Obama will be the next president of the US!

    June 30, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  23. Mike D

    obama makes you mccain idiots look bad, real bad.

    June 30, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  24. Fella from Chicago

    bdiddy from Chicago....you're right on all counts.
    Big Al--Who you calling crooks? Barack and I are from Chicago and we know crooks when we see 'em. Like uh..Rezko and our Democratic Governor with the funny last name who's about to be indicted by the Feds.
    If you're from Chicago you're smudged if not dirty from playing politics in the Windy City.
    Obama is no Messiah. Heck, he's not even a choir boy, but he's got all you suburban white folks fooled.

    June 30, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  25. Bill

    This criticism about patriotism is just a deflection from tallking about real issues. Might as well criticize Obama for not loving his mommy.

    Grow up people.

    June 30, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
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