Obama Campaign Tries To Downplay Wright
From CBS News' Maria Gavrilovic:
CHICAGO – While Barack Obama has tried to avoid talking about Rev. Jeremiah Wright recently, his former pastor has not been keeping a low profile, scheduling a slew of public appearances. When asked if he believed that will hurt him in the upcoming primaries, Obama dodged the question, telling reporters, "I'll let you prognosticate."
In an interview with Fox News Sunday, Obama said he did not discourage Wright from making appearances and understands why his desire to speak. "He is somebody who has obviously been the subject of some pretty sharp attacks," Obama said. "It's understandable that somebody, after an entire career of service, would want to defend themselves."
When the controversy surrounding Obama's relationship with Rev. Wright first broke, Wright remained quiet. Instead, Obama gave a number of interviews and addressed questions about Wright. The controversy seemed to fade away – during six weeks of campaigning in Pennsylvania, Obama was asked by voters about Wright only twice.
Going forward, the campaign appears to want to put an end to questions about Wright. Communications Director Robert Gibbs did not have a comment about Wright's appearance at the NAACP Freedom Dinner last night. "We've said all we're going to say," Gibbs said.
Wright didn't have much to say about his most famous parishioner, either. "I'm not here for political reasons," he said at the dinner. "I'm not a politician. I know that fact will surprise many of you because many in the corporate-owned media made it seem like I am running for the Oval Office. I am not running for the Oval Office. I've been running for Jesus a long, long time and I'm not tired yet."
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