Second Time Around, Obama Severs Ties with Anti-Gay Rev. Jeremiah Wright

Wed. April 30, 2008 12:00 AM by

Chicago, IL - Following a second round of potentially damaging comments from 'spiritual advisor' Rev. Jeremiah Wright, democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama is once and for all separating himself from the man who baptized his two children, saying he is "outraged" by Wright's latest outburst.

Addressing a group of journalists at the National Press Club Monday, Wright suggested that the U.S. government created HIV as a form of genocide against minorities.

"Based on this Tuskegee experiment and based on what has happened to Africans in this country, I believe our government is capable of doing anything," he said.

This is after sermons of the reverend denouncing homosexuality and claiming the AIDS virus was created to destroy "people of color" made the rounds on YouTube earlier this year.

At the time, Obama attempted to counter Wright's powerful words with positive memories of the pastor. With his speech on race in America, Obama publicly denounced several of his former pastor's comments.

Yet Wright has continued to be the thorn Obama just can't shake.

Wright suggested Obama said what he did for the sake of his candidacy, according to the Associated Press.

"If Senator Obama did not say what he said, he would never get elected," Wright said, according to AP.

Now, Obama says he must take a step further from Wright, calling the retired pastor's words divisive.

"What became clear to me is that he was presenting a world view that contradicts who I am and what I stand for," Obama said. "And what I think particularly angered me was his suggestion somehow that my previous denunciation of his remarks were somehow political posturing. Anybody who knows me and anybody who knows what I'm about knows that I am about trying to bridge gaps and I see the commonality in all people."

When asked of his current relationship with the pastor, Obama said there had been a marked shift.

"Obviously, whatever relationship I had with Reverend Wright has changed," Obama said. "I don't think he showed much concern for me, more importantly I don't think he showed much concern for what we're trying to do in this campaign.

"I have been a member of Trinity United Church of Christ since 1992, and have known Reverend Wright for 20 years," Obama said. "The person I saw yesterday was not the person that I met 20 years ago."

Written By Ross von Metzke

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