Jeremiah Wright introduces candidate 18 days after Hampton University speech.
On the heels of an absolutely miserable debate performance… yet another problem for the Obama campaign.
There’s another tape. This time with Jeremiah Wright. And a very curious video.
“Grace and peace be unto you,” begins Wright, smiling, his voice calm and low.
It’s June 23, 2007 — a mere 18 days after the now infamous Obama speech at Hampton University that the Daily Caller and the Drudge Report titled as “Obama’s Other Race Speech.” An angry, racially divisive speech in which Obama effortlessly slides into a Southern accent, shouting “The people down in New Orleans they [the Bush administration and the federal government] don’t care about as much!”
The event: The United Church of Christ’s 26th General Synod, the bi-annual gathering of UCC pastors and lay leaders from across the country, meeting that year in Hartford, Connecticut. (Note: Full Disclosure: I have served as both president of my local UCC Church Council and as a member of the UCC’s Penn Central Conference Board of Directors.)
This time Trinity UCC’s Reverend Jeremiah Wright isn’t sitting somewhere off camera while receiving accolades from then-Senator Obama. No, this time Wright is front and center to introduce his famous parishioner — by videotape.
The 40-plus-minute tape begins with the appearance of then-UCC General President, the Reverend John Thomas, taking the stage to announce Obama’s appearance. Thomas explains that Reverend Wright will be introducing Obama.
But wait! There’s a catch!
Because of a wedding at Trinity that day, says Thomas, Reverend Wright must do the intro by videotape instead of in person.
Remember now. This is the General Synod of the United Church of Christ. And Jeremiah Wright is a well-recognized figure within the UCC. Indeed, his friend John Thomas would months later ostentatiously go to Chicago and defend Wright from the pulpit at Trinity UCC when the controversy over Wright’s sermons finally boiled over. So Thomas knows Wright well — and has every reason to speak the truth about the Obama-Wright relationship when he introduces the Wright video by saying this:
It had long been our hope that Senator Obama’s pastor, the Reverend Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright would be able to be here to introduce his parishioner to us. Dr. Wright is one of the most distinguished leaders in the United Church of Christ, and it is well known that he and Trinity have had a profound and shaping influence on Senator Obama’s [“cation” — unintelligible]. Unfortunately, Dr. Wright had a longstanding commitment to a wedding at Trinity Church this weekend. And as every pastor in this room knows, if the choice is between a United States Senator and the mother of a bride, (laughter) it’s no (“contest”? Unintelligible)….and he made the right decision.
After a few more words from Thomas, the image of the calm smiling Jeremiah Wright flashes on the auditorium television screens.
Before we get to what follows, let’s go to a story from the current bestseller by former New York Times Magazine editor-in-chief Edward Klein, The Amateur: Barack Obama in the White House.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?