Obama gets attacked on race by … Jesse Jackson?
posted at 7:31 pm on July 9, 2008 by Ed Morrissey
Barack Obama has another data point for his contention that he will get attacked on the basis of race, but as with Ralph Nader, his antagonist comes from the Left. An open mike has Jesse Jackson on the defensive, apologizing for spontaneous comments deriding Barack Obama and the tone he takes when talking to black voters, especially in churches. Jackson apparently offered such an obscene comment that no one wants to even paraphrase it for the record:
BLITZER: Reverend Jackson, why did you say these things? Because it’s so crude, we can’t even repeat it on the air right now, what you said on this open mike. What was going through your mind?
JACKSON: Well, when I was asked about it, there was already some kind of (INAUDIBLE) reaction. The appeal in black America is record levels of unemployment, home foreclosure crisis, records of murders, and all kind of reprehensible actions for black America. A million blacks are in jail even as we talk today and 900,000 young black men. So we have some real serious issues, and not just moral issues —
BLITZER: Well then let me interrupt, Reverend Jackson.
JACKSON: — Structural inequality.
BLITZER: Reverend Jackson, are you suggesting that Senator Obama isn’t concerned about these issues? Is that what you are saying?
JACKSON: Not — by any means (ph). He has dealt with it more effectively than anyone else has. Each time he gives one of these message at a black church, it appears to be targeted and the media takes it and runs with it as a solution to a structural crisis — you know — his moral behavior.
Jackson may have done Obama a bit of a favor. Mainstream America has long distrusted Jackson, and anything that puts distance between him and Obama can only help support Obama’s status as a member of the new generation of black politicians. He didn’t do himself any favors by attacking Obama; it will underscore his identification as a mostly discredited has-been.
Let’s not forget that Jackson attacked Obama before on race — in terms very similar to that of Nader. Last September, Jackson made headlines for accusing Obama of “acting like he’s white”. That came in response to Obama’s seeming disinterest in Jackson’s race-baiting cause du jour, the Jena 6. Apparently, Jesse still has that same criticism.
So what exactly did Jesse say this time? Rumor has it that he made a castration reference, which would have caused a wildfire if it came from anyone else. Tune in to Hannity & Colmes tonight, where they will play the tape — with the appropriate redactions, of course. Maybe by that time, the media will have thoroughly researched their Roget’s Thesauruses for appropriate euphimisms. (via Michelle)