Obama's Pastor Problems Continue As Rev. Pfleger Mocks Clinton

CHICAGO (AP) -- Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama said Thursday that he was "deeply disappointed" by a supporter's sermon at his church that mocked Hillary Rodham Clinton.

The Rev. Michael Pfleger, a Chicago activist, also apologized for last Sunday's sermon at Obama's church, in which he said Clinton's eyes welled with tears before the New Hampshire primary because she felt "entitled" to the Democratic nomination and because "there's a black man stealing my show."

In video circulating on the Internet, Pfleger said the former first lady expected to win the nomination before Obama's sudden popularity.

"She just always thought that, 'This is mine. I'm Bill's wife. I'm white.' ... And then, out of nowhere, came 'Hey, I'm Barack Obama." And she said, 'Oh damn, where did you come from? I'm white. I'm entitled. There's a black man stealing my show,'" Pfleger said at Trinity United Church of Christ.

He then went on to parody Clinton, sobbing and wiping his face with a handkerchief.

"She wasn't the only one crying," he said. "There was a whole lot of white people crying."

Obama won the Iowa caucuses, the first contest of the nominating season, in January. Days later, Clinton's eyes brimmed with tears and her voice broke as she talked with New Hampshire voters on the eve of the primary, which she won.

Obama said he was "deeply disappointed" by Pfleger's comments.

"As I have traveled this country, I've been impressed not by what divides us, but by all that that unites us," he said in a statement. "That is why I am deeply disappointed in Father Pfleger's divisive, backward-looking rhetoric, which doesn't reflect the country I see or the desire of people across America to come together in common cause."

Pfleger, the white pastor of predominantly black Saint Sabina Roman Catholic Church on the city's Southwest side, said he regretted his choice of words.

"These words are inconsistent with Senator Obama's life and message and I am deeply sorry if they offended Senator Clinton or anyone else who saw them," Pfleger said.

Clinton's campaign denounced Pfleger's comments.

"Divisive and hateful language like that is totally counterproductive in our efforts to bring our party together and have no place at the pulpit or in our politics," the campaign said in a statement. "We are disappointed that Senator Obama didn't specifically reject Father's Pfleger's despicable comments about Senator Clinton, and assume he will do so."

In March, Pfleger invited Obama's embattled former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, to speak at Saint Sabina, embracing Wright in the church.

Obama recently broke with Wright, who had been his longtime pastor, after video of his sermons blaming U.S. policies for the Sept. 11 attacks and his calls of "God damn America" became fixtures on the Internet and cable news networks and created a political problem for the candidate.

Pfleger, known locally as a community activist and organizer, was arrested in June 2007 with the Rev. Jesse Jackson during a protest outside of a south suburban Chicago gun shop. The criminal trespass charges were later dropped.

He also has hosted Louis Farrakhan, the controversial leader of the Nation of Islam, at St. Sabina and has called him "a gift from God to a sick, sick world."

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  • by Chris Location: Greenville on Jun 1, 2008 at 02:23 PM
    The white preacher was funnier than wright.
  • by joesixpack Location: williamston on May 31, 2008 at 08:13 PM
    I am absolutely amazed at this guys popularity ..despite his Moslem background and connections /support from radical political figures liberals just love him!. How about the obvious racists views of his church that he's attended for the last 20 yrs but suddenly distanced himself from. How about the fact he's only been a Senator for two yrs?. We keep hearing about change blah blah blah but what's his game plan? At least McCain loves his country and fought for it with distinction like a real American. This creep won't even wear an American flag pin or put his hand over his heart during the national anthemn. Who in there right mind would trust this man to be our Commander in Chief? God help this country!
  • by EndOfTime Location: NC on May 31, 2008 at 12:21 PM
    I can't believe American's are actually supporting "Obama" when he actually attends a church that allows such remarks as the two so called pastors have made. Wake up Americans while America is still America. Or it may soon be called Iraquia.
  • by Obama 08 4 Prez! on May 31, 2008 at 12:16 PM
    This is truly the most exciting campaign in history. But i'm so confused, so make sure you read the story that goes with this blog before you make an comments. There is a person on her spewing about Obama's pastor is racist. But if I read correctly Obama's pastor is white? So the pastor cursed and spoke all this retoric in front of white and black people. And the white people didn't have a proble with what the pastor has been saying? hmmmmmmm interesting! Oh and for all of you that are to lazy to look, i copied and pasted this so you wouldn't have to look...(Pfleger, the white pastor of predominantly black Saint Sabina Roman Catholic Church on the city's Southwest side, said he regretted his choice of words) Now that is funny and a little ironic.
  • by Blog Refuter Location: NC on May 30, 2008 at 07:30 PM
    Great post, Bert. Matt, if we have to buy a Koran, we better learn to speak Arabic rather than Spanish. :) This is the most exciting campaign ever! Controversy, discussion, enlightenment... It can't get any better than this, folks.
  • by Matt Location: Washington on May 30, 2008 at 06:22 PM
    As for osama's affliation with these people I say it's a "birds of a feather" situation. Vote for Osama in the fall and you can go ahead and buy a koran and learn to speak spanish. America can't be destroyed from the outside but will be destroyed from the inside out. It's been happening for a while now, this guy will only speed up the process.
  • by Cactus Location: Strabane,NC on May 30, 2008 at 04:12 PM
    Good coments from Lee and Liza. Obama needs to exit this so called church, or do as I did, opt for a new preacher that speaks to people of the bible. Hate, discrimination, and racist remarks are not part of bibical teachings. I would still like for Obama to tell me "what changes" he speaks. I want changes also, but I don't think Omama is the answer. I just don't trust this man.
  • by Liza Location: NC on May 30, 2008 at 01:25 PM
    As a white female, if I had been associated with a church and pastor for 20 years and suddenly heard "racist" remarks, I would in no uncertain terms denounce the remarks and break ties at that time. I would not wait until someone had irrefutable proof in the form of a video. I do not believe these "racist" remarks were anything new to Obama and by his remaining there until the "racist" comments came to the attention of the public it gives the appearance of agreement. Obama's failure to clearly and completely break away from the "racist" side speaks volumes to me. His playing both sides demeans him and makes him just another POLITICIAN. Also, I hear him talk about "change you can believe in". That doesn't necessarily mean a good change. I haven't really heard him speak of any specifics that will help me as a hard-working middle class woman. Generalities is all I've heard. Oh, and just for the record , I'm not excited about Clinton or McCain either, but the subject here was Obama.
  • by Anonymous on May 30, 2008 at 11:27 AM
    I'm with you Bert.
  • by ncwoman on May 30, 2008 at 08:35 AM
    Bert, all your ranting causes me to recall the words of President John F. Kennedy, words that are no longer taught to our young people today. "Ask not what my country can do for me. Ask what I can do for my country." You, my friend, sound like so many others - you feel entitled.
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