Samantha Power left the Obama campaign for calling Hillary Clinton a “monster.”
Geraldine Ferraro left the Hillary campaign for saying Barack Obama would not be where he is today if he weren’t black. (Mickey Kaus accurately notes that it’s difficult to embody post-racial hopes when you’re white.)
Rev. Jeremiah Wright has no official position with the Obama campaign, and it’s almost a shame, because that means he can’t resign to distance himself from the candidate.
If you had heard that your pastor had said the following….
“The government gives them the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strike law and then wants us to sing ‘God Bless America.’ No, no, no, God damn America, that’s in the Bible for killing innocent people,” he said in a 2003 sermon. “God damn America for treating our citizens as less than human. God damn America for as long as she acts like she is God and she is supreme.”
In addition to damning America, he told his congregation on the Sunday after Sept. 11, 2001 that the United States had brought on al Qaeda’s attacks because of its own terrorism.
“We bombed Hiroshima, we bombed Nagasaki, and we nuked far more than the thousands in New York and the Pentagon, and we never batted an eye,” Rev. Wright said in a sermon on Sept. 16, 2001.
“We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans, and now we are indignant because the stuff we have done overseas is now brought right back to our own front yards. America’s chickens are coming home to roost,” he told his congregation.
…would your reaction be:
“I don’t think my church is actually particularly controversial.” He said Rev. Wright “is like an old uncle who says things I don’t always agree with,” telling a Jewish group that everyone has someone like that in their family.
If you had a relative who said America had 9/11 coming, would you still be on good terms with that relative?
And would a statement like this seem sufficient?
In a statement to ABCNews.com, Obama’s press spokesman Bill Burton said, “Sen. Obama has said repeatedly that personal attacks such as this have no place in this campaign or our politics, whether they’re offered from a platform at a rally or the pulpit of a church. Sen. Obama does not think of the pastor of his church in political terms. Like a member of his family, there are things he says with which Sen. Obama deeply disagrees. But now that he is retired, that doesn’t detract from Sen. Obama’s affection for Rev. Wright or his appreciation for the good works he has done.”
By the way, notice the default setting of the Obama campaign, decrying a “personal attack.” But this wasn’t a personal attack. Wright didn’t denounce any individual personally. He denounced the country. It was a national attack, if anything.