Superdelegates must know what more and more voters know: Obama is a total meltdown waiting to happen. Let’s review what has happened and the implications. (We’ll have more on this story during the coming week.)
Obama has been forced to talk to normal people during this campaign. His well hidden contempt for non-wealthy Americans is showing. Obama recently has had to mingle with regular Americans in bowling alleys and working class bars in order to convince Pennsylvanians and Americans that he is not a stuck up elitist know-nothing with audacious ambition and a low level management trainee resume.
Regular readers of Big Pink are aware that Obama failed to represent his poor Chicago state senate constitutents because he was busy socializing with, and getting donations from his slumlord friend, the now indicted Antoin “Tony” Rezko. We have repeatedly asked:
If Obama with all his “community organizer” experience did not know what was happening in his small district office in Chicago, how in blazes does anyone think he will respond to the needs of an American electorate that numbers in the hundreds of millions?
This past week Obama has once again answered our question in a manner that disqualifies him from the presidency.
And no, we are not referring to Obama’s vulgar vibrator moment.
We refer to Obama’s view of small town Americans. Obama and his friends love laughing at those country hicks in small town America [Pictures HERE].
You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. So it’s not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.
Here is how Hillary, in a very fine speech that should be the theme for the rest of the campaign, sees Pennsylvanians and small town Americans:
Now, like some of you may have been, I was taken aback by the demeaning remarks Sen. Obama made about people in small town America. Sen. Obama’s remarks are elitist, and they are out of touch. They are not reflective of the values and beliefs of Americans. Certainly not the Americans that I know — not the Americans I grew up with, not the Americans I lived with in Arkansas or represent in New York.
You know, Americans who believe in the Second Amendment believe it’s a matter of Constitutional rights. Americans who believe in God believe it is a matter of personal faith. Americans who believe in protecting good American jobs believe it is a matter of the American Dream.
When my dad grew up it was in a working class family in Scranton. I grew up in a churchgoing family, a family that believed in the importance of living out and expressing our faith.
The people of faith I know don’t “cling to” religion because they’re bitter.
People embrace faith not because they are materially poor, but because they are spiritually rich. Our faith is the faith of our parents and our grandparents. It is a fundamental expression of who we are and what we believe.
I also disagree with Sen. Obama’s assertion that people in this country “cling to guns” and have certain attitudes about immigration or trade simply out of frustration. People of all walks of life hunt — and they enjoy doing so because it’s an important part of their life, not because they are bitter.
And as I’ve traveled across Indiana and I¹ve talked to a lot of people what I hear are real concerns about unfair trade practices that cost people jobs.
I think hardworking Americans are right to want to see changes in our trade laws. That¹s what I have said. That’s what I have fought for.
I would also point out that the vast majority of working Americans reject anti-immigration rhetoric. They want reform so that we remain a nation of immigrants, but also a nation of laws that we enforce and we enforce fairly.
Americans are fair-minded and good-hearted people. We have ups and downs. We face challenges and problems. But our views are rooted in real values, and they should be respected.
Americans out across our country have born the brunt of the Bush administration¹s assault on the middle class. Contrary to what Sen. Obama says, most Americans did much better during the Clinton years than they have done during the Bush years.
If we are striving to bring people together — and I believe we should be — I don’t think it helps to divide our country into one America that is enlightened and one that is not.
We are very pleased that the video of the above speech is sponsored on Youtube by the official Hillary Clinton campaign:
We are also very pleased that Geoffrey Garin, the new chief strategist of the Hillary Clinton campaign will take Obama to account and that the Hillary Clinton campaign is going to defend small town America against Barack Obama’s bigotry:
Hillary chief strategist Geoffrey Garin dramatically raised the stakes in the battle over Barack Obama’s comments about small-town America, saying in an interview that they would be “damaging” to him in a general election, could set back the Democratic Party’s efforts to reach heartland voters, and should be something that super-delegates consider when deciding whom to support.
“These are the kinds of attitudes that have created a gulf between Democrats and lots of small-town and heartland voters that we’ve been working very, very hard to bridge,” Garin told me today in his first public comments about the flap.
“I saw Senator Obama’s comments as a step backward to building those kinds of bridges,” Garin continued, saying the following of the impact that the comments could have in a general election:
“They will be damaging. And they could be significantly so…I don’t think that the kinds of attitudes that Senator Obama expressed are consistent with Democrats doing what we need to do to win a general election.”
In the wide-ranging interview, Garin also:
* Suggested that the comments were “completely fair game” for use in an ad, and an “important topic”
* Said that he would “hope” that the Clinton campaign would point to the comments in their efforts to persuade super-delegates to back her over Obama [snip]
Asked what impact the comments could have in a general election, Garin said: “The people who are most likely to be offended by this are also the most likely to be swing voters in general elections.”…
We think the above Hillary speech is strong and excellent. Hillary’s initial reaction to Obama’s bigotry was also good:
“I saw in the media it’s being reorted that my opponent said that the people of Pennsylvania who faced hard times are bitter. Well, that’s not my experience.
“As I travel around Pennsylvania, I meet people who are resilient, who are optimistic, who are positive, who are rolling up their sleeves. They are working hard everyday for a better future, for themselves and their children.
“Pennsylvanians don’t need a president who looks down on them, they need a president who stands up for them, who fights for them, who works hard for your futures, your jobs, your families.”
Obama’s bigotry against small town America has been expressed before. Big Media continues to protect Bigot Obama and trys to explain away Obama’s hard edged bigotry:
Politico has a list of why Bigot Obama is so damaged. Politico does not mention the financial godsend this is for Hillary’s campaign. Obama is spending over $2 million in Pennsylvania a week. The ugly and truthful coverage of what Bigot Obama thinks of small town America will require more that $2 million a week to counteract. In addition, these Bigot Obama remarks come in with Reverend Wright’s “God Damn America” remarks as background. Congressional Democrats are already under attack by Republican opponents demanding the Democrats repudiate Bigot Obama’s ugly, condescending, elitist, anti-small town America remarks:
A Clinton comeback was looking far-fetched. But operatives in both parties were buzzing about that possibility Saturday following the revelation that Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) told wealthy San Franciscans that small-town Pennsylvanians and Midwesterners “cling to guns or religion” because they are “bitter” about their economic status.
Obama at first dug in on that contention Friday after audio of the private fundraiser was posted by The Huffington Post. Altering course, on Saturday in Muncie, Ind., he conceded that he “didn’t say it as well as I should have.” And he told the Winston-Salem (N.C.) Journal that “obviously, if I worded things in a way that made people offended, I deeply regret that. … The underlying truth of what I said remains, which is simply that people who have seen their way of life upended because of economic distress are frustrated and rightfully so.”
Who is more inarticulate, George W. Bush or Barack H. Obama? Is Obama inarticulate or did he express his real bigotry? Obama is either as tongue tied as Bush or as bigoted as Wright.
In fact, this is a potential turning point for Obama’s campaign — an episode that could be even more damaging than the attention to remarks by his minister, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, since this time the controversial words came out of his own mouth.
Here are a dozen reasons why: 1. It lets Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) off the mat at a time when even some of her top supporters had begun to despair about her prospects. Clinton hit back hard on the campaign trail Saturday. And her campaign held a conference call where former Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack, a Pittsburgh native, described Obama’s remarks as “condescending and disappointing” and “undercutting his message of hope.”
2. If you are going to say something that makes you sound like a clueless liberal, don’t say it in San Francisco. Obama’s views might have been received very differently if he had expressed them in public to Pennsylvania voters, saying he understood and could alleviate their frustrations.
3. Some people actually use guns to hunt — not to compensate for a salary that’s less than a U.S. senator’s.
4. Some people cling to religion not because they are bitter but because they believe it, and because faith in God gives them purpose and comfort.
Obama and his friends love laughing at those country hicks in small town America [Pictures HERE]. San Francisco, a wonderful diverse, mostly “liberal” city has been used by Republicans for decades to paint Democrats as out of touch and elitist. There are many hard working Americans in San Francisco. But Obama as reflected in the pictures we posted was not speaking to a diverse group of San Franciscans. Obama was speaking like a professor trying to impress young students with his wit by insulting poorer, less privileged Americans.
5. Some hard-working Americans find it insulting when rich elites explain away things dear to their hearts as desperation. It would be like a white politician telling blacks they cling to charismatic churches to compensate for their plight. And it vindicates centrist Democrats who have been arguing for a decade that their party has allowed itself to look culturally out of touch with the American mainstream.
6. It provides a handy excuse for people who were looking for a reason not to vote for Obama but don’t want to think of themselves as bigoted. It hurts Obama especially with the former Reagan Democrats, the culturally conservative, blue-collar workers who could be a promising voter group for him. It also antagonizes people who were concerned about his minister but might have given him the benefit of the doubt after his eloquent speech on race.
7. It gives the Clinton campaign new arguments for trying to recruit superdelegates, the Democratic elected officials and other insiders who get a vote on the nomination. A moderate politician from a swing district, for example, might not want to have to explain support for a candidate who is being hammered as a liberal. And Clinton’s agents can claim that for all the talk of her being divisive, Obama has provided plenty of fodder to energize Republicans.
8. It helps Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) frame a potential race against Obama, even though both of them have found support among independents. Now Republicans have a simple, easily repeated line of attack to use against Obama as an out-of-touch snob, as they had with Sen. John F. Kerry after he blundered by commenting about military funding, “I actually did vote for the $87 billion before I voted against it.”
9. The comments play directly into an already-established narrative about his candidacy. Clinton supporters have been arguing that Obama has limited appeal beyond upscale Democrats — the so-called latte liberals. You can’t win red states if people there don’t like you. “Elites need to understand that middle-class Americans view values and culture as more important than mere trickery,” said Paul Begala, a Clinton backer. “Democrats have to respect their values and reflect their values, not condescend to them as if they were children who’ve been bamboozled.”
Maybe Obama will go windsurfing with Kerry this week.
Timing is everything and as Matt Cooper notes “Let it also be noted that there were approx 100 videocams whirring away inside the room as Barack spoke.” Expect videotape as April 22 approaches:
10. The timing is terrible. With the Pennsylvania primary nine days off, late-deciding voters are starting to tune in. Obama and Clinton are scheduled to appear separately on CNN on Sunday for a forum on, of all topics, faith and values. And ABC News is staging a Clinton-Obama debate in Philadelphia on Wednesday. So Clinton has the maximum opportunity to keep a spotlight on the issue. Besides sex, little drives the news and opinion industry more than race, religion, culture and class. So as far as chances the chattering-class will perpetuate the issue, Obama has hit the jackpot.
11. The story did not have its roots in right-wing or conservative circles. It was published — and aggressively promoted — by The Huffington Post, a liberally oriented organization that was Obama’s outlet of choice when he wanted to release a personal statement distancing himself from some comments by the Rev. Wright.
12. It undermines Democratic congressional candidates who had thought that Obama would make a stronger top for the ticket than Clinton. Already, Republican House candidates are challenging their Democratic opponents to renounce or embrace Obama’s remarks. Ken Spain, press secretary for the National Republican Congressional Committee, said: “There is a myth being perpetuated by Democrats and even some in the media that an Obama candidacy would somehow be better for their chances down ballot. But we don’t believe that is the case.”
Other than Hillary Clinton herself, Mayor Steve Reed of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania sums up Obama’s Bigotry best:
Just for way of background, I’ve been the Mayor of Harrisburg now – I’m in my 27th year. Born and raised here in Pennsylvania. Born and raised in a small town as a matter of fact. The irony about Pennsylvania is that we really only have two large towns. Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. Just about every other place could be classified as a small town or a borough, or a township, or whatever. We happen to like our small town values. We think they’re the bedrock of the American values that have built this nation and the people of our towns embrace their religions out of faith, not out of bitterness or frustration.
I have found our small town citizens to be decent. They are hardworking. They are friendly. They are giving. They are caring. They are patriotic. Frankly, they don’t deserve to be categorized as they were in the remarks made out in California. It’s a very unfortunate stereotype of the citizens of our towns in this state, and in every state across the nation, to have them unfairly categorized as they were.
Frankly, the remarks of Senator Obama lacked judgment. They lack understanding. Frankly the remarks are condescending, they are negative, they are hurtful. I found it to be most revealing of what the candidate really thinks of us.
And it’s telling to me that these remarks were made several thousand miles away from us at a very expensive fundraising campaign event in a very upscale location when he did not think that any of us were ever going to hear what he had to say.
All of this in my mind invites the question of what else does this candidate think about all of the different people who make up our rather diverse nation. His remarks – I was listening to CNN last night with different commentators – Ed Rollins for example, and others and so forth – they are licking their chops. This is perfect ammunition for them to use in the fall campaign. They will eviscerate Senator Obama if he became the nominee with comments like this. It will play all across America. Midwest, West, East, South. Frankly, I think they were ill advised remarks. They lacked judgment.
And they’re condescending. And most of all, they are very divisive, which is in complete contrast to the rhetoric we hear from him at the public events when he knows the cameras are running. I’m supporting Hillary Clinton. I do so without hesitation. Her roots are in Pennsylvania. She understands the people of this state. She understands small town values. She’d make a terrific president. She’ll bring us together.