ABC: Obama contradicts a year of denial

posted at 2:03 pm on March 19, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

ABC News took a closer look at the Barack Obama speech on race yesterday and found curious discrepancies from past positions. Brian Ross and Avni Patel also note similar contradictions in Obama’s positions on Tony Rezko. It looks like some of the media has finally begun vetting the Democratic front-runner for the nomination:

Buried in his eloquent, highly praised speech on America’s racial divide, Sen. Barack Obama contradicted more than a year of denials and spin from him and his staff about his knowledge of Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s controversial sermons.

Similarly, Obama also has only recently given a much fuller accounting of his relationship with indicted political fixer Antoin “Tony” Rezko, a longtime friend, who his campaign once described as just one of “thousands of donors.”

Until yesterday, Obama said the only thing controversial he knew about Rev. Wright was his stand on issues relating to Africa, abortion and gay marriage. …

His initial reaction to the initial ABC News broadcast of Rev. Wright’s sermons denouncing the U.S. was that he had never heard his pastor of 20 years make any comments that were anti-U.S. until the tape was played on air.

But yesterday, he told a different story. “Did I ever hear him make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church? Yes,” he said in his speech yesterday in Philadelphia.

The ABC interview prior to the speech gives another datapoint on the claims of New Politics on behalf of Obama. Just as with Rezko, Obama tried minimizing his exposure to Wright’s sermons. Only after finding that a losing proposition did he acknowledge that he had listened to Wright’s incendiary speeches against America, but somehow failed to challenge him until other people began hearing the rhetoric for themselves. That followed within days of Obama’s acknowledgment that he had underreported Rezko’s financial contribution to Obama’s campaigns by a factor of five.

That initial reaction hardly commends Obama as a courageous statesman. It shows him as a politician of the usual stripe — one who attempts to spin out of a jam with half-truths and at best a graduated honesty dependent on how much evidence gets made public. Obama’s claim to conduct himself to a higher standard; indeed, because of his singular lack of experience and accomplishment, it’s the only claim he has for election to the nation’s highest office. If he doesn’t have that, then he has no basis for election at all.

Even the contradictory attempt to distance himself from Wright’s statements failed to make the case. He argued in the rest of speech that we need to put an end to divisiveness, and that Wright’s rhetoric belongs to the past, not the present or the future. Having said that, what did Obama ever do to make that case at his own church? Wright expounds these incendiary and unacceptable themes, as Obama himself admits, to the present and future generations at Trinity. Obama’s own children sit in those pews, as well as a large number of children from other families. Did Obama ever speak out even once to challenge Wright’s views?

If Obama can’t bring change he says is necessary to his own church, why should we trust him to bring change to the nation?


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Comments

Wait! What is that ugly head appearing out of the darkness? Why it’s the New Black Panther Party coming to the rescue.

Zaire67 on March 19, 2008 at 5:56 PM

Why not just ask Obama face to face. Why did you lie about what you know about Wright?

oakpack on March 19, 2008 at 6:00 PM

Obama is everything that ever bothered me about the Democrats, embodied in one empty suit. In a country of 300 million, there are thousands of people truly qualified to serve as President. Hundreds of them are black. And this is the best the Democrats could do? An ethically challenged Illinois machine pol with, at the least, a profound tolerance for vicious racist and anti-American views, skating into the election on a paper-thin resume, and forced to spend his campaign time explaining why we should all make allowances for the insane rants he’s quietly bathed in for 20 years? Are there no black Democrats who haven’t had chummy dinners with murderous terrorists, and who could take the campaign stage with a joyous, sincere cry of “God Bless America!” at every rally? I had the same sad feeling after the 2004 elections. The Democrats needed a military veteran to run against Bush… couldn’t they find one who wasn’t a fraud?

Are we asking too much to insist that our presidential candidates be qualified, and their patriotism unqualified?

Doctor Zero on March 19, 2008 at 6:00 PM

Obama is everything that ever bothered me about the Democrats, embodied in one empty suit. In a country of 300 million, there are thousands of people truly qualified to serve as President. Hundreds of them are black. And this is the best the Democrats could do? An ethically challenged Illinois machine pol with, at the least, a profound tolerance for vicious racist and anti-American views, skating into the election on a paper-thin resume, and forced to spend his campaign time explaining why we should all make allowances for the insane rants he’s quietly bathed in for 20 years? Are there no black Democrats who haven’t had chummy dinners with murderous terrorists, and who could take the campaign stage with a joyous, sincere cry of “God Bless America!” at every rally? I had the same sad feeling after the 2004 elections. The Democrats needed a military veteran to run against Bush… couldn’t they find one who wasn’t a fraud?

Are we asking too much to insist that our presidential candidates be qualified, and their patriotism unqualified?

Doctor Zero on March 19, 2008 at 6:00 PM

Well done Doctor Zero.

rplat on March 19, 2008 at 6:05 PM

Guess which candidate has an “Ultra-Right” agenda and was piled-on by the socialists?

That’s right.

So, the candidate despised by the socialists/communists has been the recipient of repeated lies in the MSM (and here on this blog), and the victim of voter suppression (in many forms, not the least of which was the cancellation of the originally scheduled debate for Feb 28 (references of which has since been “scrubbed” off wikipedia and CNN). Huckabee even sent a letter, signed by tens of thousands of American voters, asking McCain to hold a debate before the March 4th primaries. Going back to the Florida primaries, the MSM told viewers in Florida that Huckabee had left the state on the before the Tuesday primary. That was a bold-faced lie. Huckabee was still campaigning in Florida, but the media lied (in order to make people believe that Huckabee had conceded defeat) and suppress voter turnout for Huckabee.

McCain recently mocked Rick Santorum’s loss in his PA Senate re-election bid. While Rick lost for other reasons, McCain tried to suggest that it was Santorum’s conservative stand on immigration that led to his defeat.

McCain’s actions have been despicable. Conservatives need to understand that as things stand currently, we have a socialist as the “presumptive” nominee, and if nothing changes, you will have a choice between two socialists on the ballot in November…one “Republican” socialist and one “Democrat” socialist.

Wake up, Neo…

Red Pill on March 19, 2008 at 6:09 PM

I guess Brian Ross needs to fill time in between stories where he defends pedophiles.

Typhonsentra on March 19, 2008 at 6:09 PM

Joe McCarthy was right.

Red Pill on March 19, 2008 at 6:10 PM

New_Jersey_Buckeye on March 19, 2008

Did you read the whole story of her education and cultural life, including the “little Red Church” she went to?

Clearly his mother was way to the Left and had a big influence on little Barry. Mix in Rev. Wright’s Marxist theology, add his other ‘crazy uncle’ “Frank” to the mix, and an unmistakable pattern emerges.

While I do not believe he is a “mole” I do think he the most useful Useful Idiot the Left has in very long while.

Buy Danish on March 19, 2008 at 6:12 PM

Red Pill on March 19, 2008 at 6:10 PM

Dude, Huckabee is no longer running.

Get over it.

cs89 on March 19, 2008 at 6:14 PM

Would it be racist to call BO “burnt” toast?

Jeff_Boeing on March 19, 2008 at 6:25 PM

Would it be racist to call BO “burnt” toast?

Jeff_Boeing on March 19, 2008 at 6:25 PM

Nah. Not if one assumes you meant white bread burnt toast.

SouthernGent on March 19, 2008 at 6:31 PM

Yes, it would be racist. To atone, you’ll need to attend endless seminars in PC at a re-education camp.

Please report to your nearest university, ASAP.

AZCoyote on March 19, 2008 at 6:31 PM

Those super delegates are really going to be in a quandary.

Will they vote for the racist candidate with the delegates or the race-baiting candidate with the late-breaking momentum?

Operation Chaos is in Full Effect.

Dorvillian on March 19, 2008 at 6:42 PM

Obama, who is too weak to stand up in a church and say to a cranky, bigoted, foul-mouthed, racist conspiracy freak whooping it up in the pulpit: “You’re wrong, reverend.” wants to lead the world’s only superpower.

Nah.

Let him learn to show some courage among his congregation, first.

profitsbeard on March 19, 2008 at 6:53 PM

The fact that Obama could listen to Wright’s drivel for twenty years is truly amazing. That, in and of itself, bears truth to the lie that he had never heard such things before. What kind of idiots does he think we are? Liberals?

And here’s the other thing: Why can’t Obama just admit that he lied when told everyone he would confront Rev. Wright if he had heard such things from the pulpit? Does he just expect us to forget about it–the same way we are supposed to forget about his “former” preacher’s Marxist liberation theology?

It seems unreasonable to hate whites and then expect them to vote for you. Yet, that seems to be the contradictory basis of Obama’s campaign of reconciliation.

Stepan on March 19, 2008 at 6:53 PM

Obama is one screwed up dude. He was raised by his affluent white mother in Hawaii which almost has no black people. THEN he spends his entire adult life in a black-segregationist, white-hating church. Dude’s got issues.

After the fist fights and riots for this year’s Dhimmicrat convention are over I’m thinking that I’d still like to see Hillary up against McCain. It’s a tough choice though as either will get trounced by Juan.

Mojave Mark on March 19, 2008 at 7:01 PM

Funny, not one lib seems to have any problem with Wright! They believe everything he says– Wright is a mentor of the Michael Moores and Keith Olbermann’s of the media. That echo chamber is totally insulated from reality.

leftnomore on March 19, 2008 at 7:08 PM

I will not pat blacks on the head and say, “Isn’t that cute?” As a post-racial American, I do not believe “the legacy of slavery” gives black people the right to be permanently ill-mannered.

I LOVE YOU, ANN COULTER!

SouthernGent on March 19, 2008 at 7:10 PM

It’s a tough choice though as either will get trounced by Juan.

That’s assuming McCain will realize he has to OPPOSE Dhimmicrats now.

leftnomore on March 19, 2008 at 7:10 PM

New_Jersey_Buckeye on March 19, 2008

You might want to take a gander at this link about a mentor, that Buy Danish also provided.
http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/2289

a capella on March 19, 2008 at 7:13 PM

Reviews of BHO speech on race:

1st prize for eloquence: Charles Krauthammer on Special Report tonight.
1st price for clarity and brevity: Rush Limbaugh — “Barack Obama Turns Issue of Hate into an Issue of Race.”

petefrt on March 19, 2008 at 7:18 PM

a capella on March 19, 2008 at 7:13 PM

Thanks! I meant to provide that link but got postus interruptus and got off task.

Buy Danish on March 19, 2008 at 7:40 PM

Why not just ask Obama face to face. Why did you lie about what you know about Wright?

oakpack on March 19, 2008 at 6:00 PM

Haven’t you ever noticed that he doesn’t take questions?
A perfect Q and A would have been after his speech.
Instead he ran, his chickens must have been coming home to roost.

ArmyAunt on March 19, 2008 at 8:01 PM

Obama the Cowardly Lion:

Too afraid to confront his pastor.
Too afraid to confront Rezco.
Too afraid to vote in the State Senate.
Too afraid to face Saddam Hussein.
Too afraid to answer more than 8 questions.

I’m afraid he can’t be President.

faraway on March 19, 2008 at 8:03 PM

If only Barack had said this…

http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/billcosbypoundcakespeech.htm

Lockstein13 on March 19, 2008 at 8:14 PM

ArmyAunt on March 19, 2008 at 8:01 PM

That’s because he’s accustomed to getting a free pass from the MSM. Shine a little light on the Obama campaign it withers from the heat. And that’s just in the primary, with a very friendly press corps.

Kudo’s to ABC for finally growing a pair and doing their job.

Hog Wild on March 19, 2008 at 8:25 PM

The links provided by BuyDanish and a capella from the Canada Free Press about Obama’s connections to Marxism show an eerie pattern of his need for influential father figures in determining who he is. Strange and disturbing.

onlineanalyst on March 19, 2008 at 9:19 PM

If only he had given that speech in MASSATOOSITS.

Can’t believe this guy is actually running for President.

benrand on March 19, 2008 at 9:19 PM

Michael Medved has a very insightful analysis of the poseur communicator’s speech at Townhall.com:

“http://www.townhall.com/Columnists/MichaelMedved/2008/03/19/three_big_problems_with_baracks_speech

Stepan on March 19, 2008 at 9:44 PM

Buried in his eloquent, highly praised speech on America’s racial divide, Sen. Barack Obama contradicted more than a year of denials and spin from him and his staff about his knowledge of Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s controversial sermons.

Wow, what editor let that slip past him?

Kralizec on March 19, 2008 at 11:31 PM

cs89 on March 19, 2008 at 6:14 PM

Dude, You’re content to concede that the Presidency of the United States to one of three candidates who are all socialists and who all have taken very specific actions to advance the agenda of the Communist Party of the United States?

We are supposed to defend the Constitution of the United States from all enemies, foreign or domestic. All three active candidates are domestic enemies of the Constitution of the United States. I don’t say that lightly. McCain may have an (R) next to his name, but McCain-Fiengold is an unconstitutional restriction of first amendment rights. McCain-Kennedy was an abomination that McCain would resusitate and drive to completion as President.

Don’t jump all over me for this, but did it ever occur to anyone that while John McCain was a POW for year upon year that his captors may have brainwashed him into being a communist? His actions, from amnesty to campaign finance reform to leading the gang of 14 to calling Alito “too conservative” to calling evangelical Christians “agents of intolerance” are all actions consistent with the agenda of the Communist Party USA!

I, for one, will stand up to defend the Constitution of the United States from domestic enemies. Our service men and women are willing to die for our freedom; the least we can do is be willing to live for our freedom.

Red Pill on March 19, 2008 at 11:51 PM

Don’t jump all over me for this, but did it ever occur to anyone that while John McCain was a POW for year upon year that his captors may have brainwashed him into being a communist? His actions, from amnesty to campaign finance reform to leading the gang of 14 to calling Alito “too conservative” to calling evangelical Christians “agents of intolerance” are all actions consistent with the agenda of the Communist Party USA!
Red Pill on March 19, 2008 at 11:51 PM

Good grief. I’m not a big McCain fan, but this is truly connect the dots stuff. One of his strong points is supporting and strengthening our military. Last I looked, that wasn’t part of the Communist agenda.

a capella on March 20, 2008 at 12:19 AM

Don’t kid yourselves. Any media that wants Hillary to win will go after him. Any that want Obama to win will go after her. It’s even crossed into the entertainment world with Fey sniping at Stewart.

I guess McCain gets pretty much a free pass until the Democrats finish trying to destroy one another.

Benaiah on March 20, 2008 at 1:04 AM

Since the MSM itself is based upon a lie – the presentation of DNC propaganda is “objective news” – it is incapable of revealing the lies of its fellow travelers. Perhaps they will report about a few small rough edges, but they will never get to the root of anything. To do so would be to undermine their own reason for being.

Halley on March 20, 2008 at 3:17 AM

I guess the democrat stupor-delegates will have to dump this loser. Obama looks pretty small and pathetic next to McCain, as detestable and petty as McCain has been.
.
At least Hillary can fake a resume and try to act human.

Right_of_Attila on March 20, 2008 at 6:24 AM

A legitimate question to Obama would be,
“Does your understanding of Black Liberation Theology,
in which the rich Western nations (being tactful here)
oppress people of other ethnicities all round the world,
mean that you have a fundamental opposition to winning the
War on Terror, really The War On Jihadists who are attacking
us?”.
As commander-in-chief, if his agenda is to subjugate America
to the Third World, or the UN, we need to know about it.

davem on March 20, 2008 at 7:13 AM

“A lack of economic opportunity among black men, and the shame and frustration that came from not being able to provide for one’s family, contributed to the erosion of black families . . .”

Obama takes the standard liberal position that large numbers of black men abandon their wives and children because our racist society won’t give them jobs.

Obama’s own black father was a Harvard-trained economist. He was also a Kenyan — someone who had not grown up with the legacy of slavery, or Jim Crow, etc. Yet Obama’s father abandoned his wife and child when Obama was just a baby. Obama’s father returned to Kenya, where he worked as a government minister. Presumably, Obama Sr. earned enough in that job to at least contribute to Obama Jr.’s care and to visit with his son occasionally — but he chose not to do so.

AZCoyote on March 20, 2008 at 10:10 AM

Of course, Obama never actually heard any of this hatemongering “while sitting in the pew.” Heck, he heard ALL of it on the DVD. This is not a stupid man, just your average duplicitous, lawyer parsing, politician.

Because he watched it on his TV set, the ever lawyerly Obama could simply present the narrowest version of the truth, he could Clintonspeak it. Obama the canny politician would never leave his flank so exposed as to not be fully informed about Jeremiah’s hate talk. He knew it all. He’d heard it all. He’d watched it all…just not in church…in the comfort of his home!

Remember, all his denials are cleverly followed by qualifiers that allowed him a world of wiggle room. Just like Clinton, “it all depends upon what ‘is’ is. Same stuff, different day.

marybel on March 20, 2008 at 11:14 AM

Anyone remember Trent Lott being run out of the Senate for merely stating some pleasantries at a 100th birthday party and retirement celebration for Sen. Thurmond (R-S.C.) in the Dirksen Senate Office Building?

Lott said, “I want to say this about my state: When Strom Thurmond ran for president, we voted for him. We’re proud of it. And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn’t have had all these problems over all these years, either.”

Oh, the humanity.

RobertCSampson on March 20, 2008 at 11:16 AM

Red Pill on March 19, 2008 at 11:51 PM

I don’t have a lot of choice but to concede that McCain, Hillary or Obama will end up as president, as basically every other candidate has left the race. As I’ve noted before, McCain isn’t my first choice, but he’s better than Hillary or Obama. And no, he’s not a Socialist or a brainwashed Communist. He’s not an ideal conservative either, of course.

I was watching John Adams the other day, thinking of our current political situation, when the Ben Franklin character noted that “politics is the art of the possible.”

Sometimes that’s helpful to keep in mind.

cs89 on March 20, 2008 at 1:47 PM

Good grief. I’m not a big McCain fan, but this is truly connect the dots stuff. One of his strong points is supporting and strengthening our military. Last I looked, that wasn’t part of the Communist agenda.

a capella on March 20, 2008 at 12:19 AM

Are you aware that John McCain was at the controls of an aircraft that dropped two 1000 pound bombs into burning jet fuel on the deck of the USS Forrestal? It’s True.

McCain got out of his plane and made it to safety before the first bomb “cooked off” roughly 90 seconds later.

134 men lost their lives, hundreds more were injured, and more than 20 planes were destroyed. It was the worst non-combat-related accident in American Naval history.

Did McCain do anything to try to put out the fire?

Red Pill on March 27, 2008 at 5:28 AM

Fact: John McCain was subjected to 5 ½ years of Soviet driven “brain perversion techniques”.

I challenge anyone who is intellectually honest to compare McCain’s long senate record with the Program of the Communist Party USA.

His actions, from amnesty to campaign finance reform to leading the gang of 14 to calling Alito “too conservative” to calling evangelical Christians “agents of intolerance” are all actions consistent with the agenda of the Communist Party USA!
Red Pill on March 19, 2008 at 11:51 PM

Red Pill on March 27, 2008 at 5:42 AM