July 29th, 2010
10:31 AM ET
13 years ago

Obama: Sherrod deserved better

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama said Thursday that Shirley Sherrod "deserves better than what happens last week when a bogus controversy ... led to her forced resignation."

"Many are to blame" for the reaction that followed, he said, "including my own administration."

Her whole story, Obama said he told Sherrod, "is exactly the kind of story we need to hear in America (because) we all have our biases."

The president made his remarks during an appearance at the National Urban League's 100th Anniversary Convention in Washington.

Filed under: President Obama • Shirley Sherrod
soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. Augsbee

    Sorry, but this lady is to blame for the problems she caused President Obama, the administration, NAACP, Fox News, her boss, the Agriculture Dept. all because she did not stand her ground and demand a meeting with her bosses to explain her words, her actions, feelings in the past, her redemption with the farmer. Sherrod was irresponsible to the President and everyone else that got caught up in this mess.
    She was not so timid, shy, simple lady when she filed a huge lawsuit against the Agriculture Dept. in 1997 and won $300,000 out of the $13 million they were awarded by the court.
    Sherrod owes President Obama an apology for this embarrasing mess.

    July 29, 2010 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  2. rachel

    Why doesnt he just say including myself?

    July 29, 2010 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  3. Rick McDaniel

    There are still unanswered questions, and frankly her unwillingness to be reinstated, where she obviously would have been investigated, indicates some skeletons in the closet, so in my view, while due process should have come into play, perhaps it is just as well she did not accept the offer to return.

    There was no question, of the admission to past performance being less than it should have been, in the speech in the video.

    July 29, 2010 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  4. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    We call these teachable moments and it looks like the the President did learn from the Skip Gates incident not to jump the gun. However, I think Sec. Vilsack jumped the gun.

    July 29, 2010 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  5. Dave

    At least the members of the Obama administration involved in this mess have apologized profusely for their actions personally to Ms. Sherrod. We haven't heard anything from Fox or that wing nut who started this whole mess in the way of apology.

    Not that we expected any. They have no morals or accountablility to anyone.

    July 29, 2010 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  6. Dan

    'Her whole story, Obama said he told Sherrod, "is exactly the kind of story we need to hear in America (because) we all have our biases." '

    Exactly right. This woman makes an honest effort to talk about the realities of race relations–a kind of conversation this country desperately needs–in the context of trying to enlighten people and she's persecuted.

    A disgusting example of the depths to which "journalism" has fallen and the person who perpetrated it ought to be ostracized, if not prosecuted for libel. Instead he's being lauded as a hero by the sick bigots of the right. Shows how beyond the mainstream these people are and how dangerous it will be if they ever come to power.

    July 29, 2010 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  7. Chipster

    I suspect that the conservatives, who talk so boldly about accountability and responsibility but seldom hold themselves to that standard, will be the first to pounce on the President for being accountable and expressing regret, taking responsibility, for his Administration's hasty actions. Sherrod should sue Breitbard for defamation. His lame attempts to justify splicing the tape to completely mislead the public fall short. If his current excuses were true, no splicing would have been required at all. It didn't support his agenda so he manipulated it and the public. What a slimy thing to do!

    July 29, 2010 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  8. La Piovra

    Ms. Sherrod indeed deserved better. She was "collateral damage" in Breitbart's deliberate fabrication to prove a point he couldn't prove with facts, and then in the NAACP's and the Administration's stampede to prove they were not, either, guilty of "playing the race card" (an accusation almost always initiated by white racists, just as Holocaust denial is always a position taken by those who want to murder Jews). Human beings are not mere pawns in ideological chess.

    July 29, 2010 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  9. Marcus

    Not dodging the fact or the responsability for it...
    Oh, yeah, it's not that Texan... It's the Hawaiian!!!

    July 29, 2010 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  10. Angus McDugan

    Can't Obama learn from his past and not REACT without a bit more information? Before you Obama zealots start going off on the USDA chief, remember that Obama runs the show. Every leader is responsible for their entire organization. And before you Obama zealots go off on the government is too big for Obama to know everything going on then why the heck did he run for president if he can't manage it?

    July 29, 2010 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  11. when a bogus controversy ... led to her forced resignation

    then why didn't you step in to help her?

    July 29, 2010 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  12. Still not paid to blog

    The real news with this issue is that Fox News is not a news organization, but is simply a propaganda tool of the haters and profiteers of this country and of multinational conglomerates. This handling of Ms. Sherrod's speech gives indisputable proof that Fox cannot be trusted as a news source. Journalists are supposed to check the facts before they present a story: Journalism 101. Digging up manipulated video and pretending to inform their viewers with the "truth" is certainly not journalism, no matter how convincing their anchors are. The lazy so-called patriots who take the word of these liars as truth are harming the country they claim to love. Do your own research with a variety of sources before you make your assumptions.

    July 29, 2010 11:21 am at 11:21 am |

    That's ok, the whole country deserves better than OBAMA

    July 29, 2010 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  14. Monrob

    So did we Mr. President. Hillary would have been a better choice.

    July 29, 2010 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  15. Marvin

    From the CNN report:
    "Monday, Sherrod resigns. She says she was pressured by at least four phone calls from her superiors telling her the "White House" wants her to leave her job as the head of the Department of Agriculture's rural development office in Georgia."

    They blame their "fall guy", Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack when this appears to have come from the top.

    July 29, 2010 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  16. Hugo

    Her whole story, Obama said he told Sherrod, "is exactly the kind of story we need to hear in America (because) we all have our biases."
    Why is watered down to bias when it was a case of racial discrimination no matter how long ago or how much progress Ms. Sherrod has made with her internal issues? Would Strom Thurmond now be coined....such a biased old gentleman of the south...

    July 29, 2010 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  17. Jeff from Chicago

    "Many are to blame" for the reaction that followed, he said..

    Except, of course, Obama.

    July 29, 2010 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  18. Fair is Fair


    And the American people deserve a better president.

    July 29, 2010 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  19. doug

    Obama needed Glen Beck to tell him what to do.

    Right after Glen Beck demanded that Obama apologize to this woman, the white house reversed course and supported Sherrod and admited to making a mistake.

    The media will lie and say this is the fault of the good American media, but it was those conservatives who demanded that Obama apologize for jumping the gun.

    This was a good lesson, a lesson that proved that all Democrats are always 100% of the time dishonest and lying, that hate guides every word and decision that comes from a Democrat, and that those of us who judge people by character, not skin color have one thing in common, we all vote Republican.

    July 29, 2010 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  20. Shawn-Ga

    She sure did, however your administration and the NAACP didn't bother giving her a chance. Can't blame Fox they never mentioned her until after she had resigned. Can't blame Bush for this one either...

    This is "The cops acted stupidly" all over again, this administration shoots and then asks questions. However the knee jerk reactions show their racism and biases.

    Why do they challenge a law in AZ that asks the federal government to do their job, however cities who say "we know what federal law is but we do not care, we are a sanctuary city." those they leave alone... very telling!

    July 29, 2010 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  21. hypocricnnation

    Mrs. Sherrod Deserved Better, And Sure As Heck Didn't Get It From Your Administration.

    July 29, 2010 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  22. Independent In Albany

    Nobody deserves more blame than Fox News. Fake and Bogus would be more accurate

    July 29, 2010 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  23. Jeff In Ohio

    A President who takes responsibility. How refreshing.

    July 29, 2010 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  24. bfranklin

    Would someone please tell this guy that it is not HIS administration, it is OUR administration. And if he wants to say it is HIS administration, shouldn't he be apologizing to Ms. Sherrod. He never said the words "I'm sorry". Those words only seems to be in his vocabulary when he is talking down the U.S. to other countries.

    July 29, 2010 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  25. Ted

    This is the type of transparency we expect from the White House. The question is Why is everyone afraid of Fox News and the idiots such as Beck and Hannity and Limbarf? Why would anyone at the USDA base a personnel decision on the outrageous spewment from Fox news? Fox news, the media arm of the Grand Obstructionist Party could go out of business today and the world woudl be a better place.

    July 29, 2010 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
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