Hillary Memo: Lay Off Jeremiah Wright

Political Night Train believes the Clintons have seen the light and may stop trying to make race an issue.  It seems Obama’s minister, Jeremiah Wright is doing a good job injecting hate and racism into the campaign.

Clinton campaign: Yes on Rezko, no on Wright

by James Oliphant

The memo has apparently gone around the Hillary Clinton camp this morning: Lay off the Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr.

On a conference call Saturday to talk about the state of the race, Clinton campaign officials just wouldn’t go there.

“That’s really for Senator Obama to address,” said chief strategist Mark Penn.

It’s interesting, because certainly, the Clinton folks have shown very little reluctance to knock Obama around like a pinata every time they come across as what they perceive to be a vulnerable spot.

Take, for instance, Obama’s mea culpa on his dealings with Antoin “Tony” Rezko. The Clinton campaign has been calling on Obama for months to come clean about the full extent of his relationship with the indicted developer. Friday, they got their wish to some degree, but that only racheted up the Clinton attacks.

Penn said Obama’s disclosures were part of a “troubling pattern,” in which Obama’s words don’t match the facts. He said Obama’s advisers on foreign policy and trade haven’t always been on the same page as the candidate. And with Rezko, Penn said, Obama waited too long to tell the full story. The theme, as the Clinton folks have been pushing for weeks, is that Obama’s words don’t add up to very much.

“We tend to learn more in dribs and drabs rather than the kind of transparent candidate and the transparent campaign he says he has been running,” Penn said.

Transparency, of course, is a two-way street. The campaign was asked again whether it would release Clinton’s tax returns, something Obama has been demanding for months. Penn said the returns would be released “around April 15.” When pressed, he pledged they would be made public before the Pennsylvania primary. The Obama camp has been saying returns will shed light on the various sources of income for both Hillary — and especially Bill — Clinton.

Clinton spokesman Phil Singer also wondered why Obama had said he wasn’t aware of Rezko’s legal problems when Friday Obama said that he had indeed read stories about Rezko’s troubles and why Obama said Rezko had raised $100,000 less for his campaign than the developer actually raised.

“Senator Obama needs to answer some basic questions, including why does this story keep changing?” Singer said. He complained that Obama “claims the high ground while attacking Senator Clinton’s character.”

As for staying away from Rev. Wright, it may be that the campaign didn’t want to invite comparisons to Geraldine Ferraro, whose race-based remarks were made seemingly a thousand news cycles ago. Or maybe that talking about race in any context has become such a landmine that they just thought it wouldn’t be prudent.

It certainly wasn’t because there was nothing to say.

WHAT Does Barack Obama Really Believe?

 Ron Kessler, writing in NewsMax poses the following questions about Sen. Obama’s values and beliefs:

Mr. Obama obviously would not choose to belong to Mr. Wright’s church and seek his advice unless he agreed with at least some of his views. In light of Mr. Wright’s perspective, Michelle Obama’s comment that she feels proud of America for the first time in her adult life makes perfect sense. Much as most of us would appreciate the symbolism of a black man ascending to the presidency, what we have in Barack Obama is a politician whose closeness to Mr. Wright underscores his radical record.

Questions Obama Must Answer About Jeremiah Wright & Trinity Church

 Political Night Train believes there are many questions Sen. Obama must answer regarding Jeremiah Wright, here are a few:

I Don’t Believe Obama
By Aaron Goldstein (03/15/08)

Obama has been a member of Reverend Wright’s congregation for nearly two decades. Reverend Wright married Barack and Michelle Obama. Reverend Wright baptized their daughters.

Does Obama really expect us to believe that in nearly two decades he never attended a service where Reverend Wright uttered an unkind word about America? Did Reverend Wright only go off the deep end on the Sundays when Obama wasn’t around?

Does Obama really expect us to believe that in nearly two decades, the man whose sermon inspired his book The Audacity of Hope, never told him face to face he believed the United States was responsible for spreading HIV against people of color? Or what he really thinks about Israel?

Does Obama really expect us to believe he would not demand a white Republican politician disassociate with a church whose pastor denounced African Americans? Not on your life. Even if that pastor’s retirement was imminent.

Obama Can Not Explain His Support for Jeremiah Wright

Obama must explain how he and his family were able to tolerate Jeremiah Wright’s racist and hateful sermons over the past 20 years.  How could Barack and Michelle Obama sit, with their two young daugthers, through sermon after sermon, with Jeremiah Wright just feet away, spewing racist epithats and hatred for whites and jews?  How could he do this to his family?  Maybe the answer lies in the core beliefs and values of Barack and Michelle, or maybe the answer is elsewhere.  How could Obama give $20,000+ each year to a church that he now says does not reflect his own beliefs and values.  There is something amiss here and it needs to be explained.  The question is, will Obama get a pass from the media, just as Hillary and Bill got passes on their dealings (cattle futures, Whitewater, Travelgate, Monica, billing records).  At least in the case of Bill Clinton, he was impeached by the US House of Representatives, the equivalent of you or I being tried and convicted in a court of law.  He just didn’t receive any punishment, that is removal from office by the Senate (thanks in no measure to Sen. Strom Thurmond, of all people).

Note in Obama’s quotes below, he does not once mention Jeremiah Wright by name.

Obama decries pastor’s inflammatory statements

WASHINGTON (AFP) — Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama tried to distance himself from a controversial preacher Saturday, denouncing his allegations that the September 11 attacks were brought on by American “terrorism.”

The Illinois senator acted to quell a controversy over remarks by the preacher, Reverend Jeremiah Wright, who also argued African-Americans should sing “God Damn America” to protest their treatment.

In a blog post on the Huffington Post website, Obama admitted Friday that Wright had “touched off a firestorm” with “some inflammatory and appalling remarks he made about our country, our politics, and my political opponents.”

“I vehemently disagree and strongly condemn the statements that have been the subject of this controversy,” Obama wrote, and said such comments flew in the face of his own “profound” love of America.

“I categorically denounce any statement that disparages our great country or serves to divide us from our allies.

Appearing on CNN television later that same day, Obama said Wright’s comments “didn’t reflect my values, and didn’t reflect my ideals.”

Rev Jeremiah Wright – Obama’s Minister of Hate & Racism

Obama and the Minister

March 14, 2008; Page A19

In a sermon delivered at Howard University, Barack Obama’s longtime minister, friend and adviser blamed America for starting the AIDS virus, training professional killers, importing drugs and creating a racist society that would never elect a black candidate president.

The Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., pastor of Mr. Obama’s Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, gave the sermon at the school’s Andrew Rankin Memorial Chapel in Washington on Jan. 15, 2006.

For months now Political Night Train has been writing about Senator Obama’s pastor, mentor, friend, and advisor, Rev Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr.  Just in the past couple weeks, since the last Obama-Hillary Debate, has the mainstream press started to pay closer attention to their relationship.  Rev. Wright is a thousand pound weight around Obama’s neck, and the price of association with the minister will cost him the election in the fall.  Political Night Train believes Senator Obama must do the following within the next two weeks, and before the next Obama-Hillary debate, and surely before the next primary:

1. Openly denounce Wright in the strongest terms possible.  Mince no words, parse no words, aka Bill & Hillary Clinton.

2. Withdraw his family’s membership in Trinity United Church of Christ.

If Obama can, and will do these two things, and do them openly and loudly, he stands a chance of winning in November.  Don’t do these things in the next two weeks and the Clintons will continue to blast Obama daily through their shills and surrogates.