Boy, oh boy, Jesse Jackson’s definitely got a bit of egg on his face. Or, we hope it’s egg. Fox News caused a scandal yesterday when they aired footage off Jackson criticizing Senator Barack Obama.
Speaking with United Health Group’s Reed Tuckson about Obama’s father’s day speech, during which he took on absentee dads, Jackson, thinking his microphone had been turned off, remarked, “See, Barack been, um, talking down to black people on this faith based … I want cut his nuts off … Barack … he’s talking down to black people.”
Cue damage control…
Hearing that Bill O’Reilly planned on airing the footage, Jackson issued a preemptive apology for the “crude” remarks and declared that he has nothing but respect for the candidate and his campaign:
It was not a public speech or a declaration… For any harm or hurt that this hot mic private conversation may have caused, I apologize… My support for Senator Obama’s campaign is wide, deep and unequivocal.
He went on to say, “…I think this campaign is a redemptive moment for America and a great opportunity to redefine America.’Obviously not wanting to give this story too much energy, Obama accepted Jackson’s apology, saying they will continue to work together.
While some people will use Jackson’s comments to tear down Obama, others wonder if this may actually help him:
The comments may turn out to help Obama by emphasizing his call for personal responsibility, a favorite topic of Republicans, said Mark Rozell, a professor of public policy at George Mason University in Arlington, Virginia.
“It reinforces Obama’s effort to present himself as an advocate of responsible personal behavior, a position that Republican candidates like to secure as uniquely their own,” Rozell said.
Obama’s campaign’s definitely playing that card. Spokesman Bill Burton commented that the candidate “will continue to speak out about our responsibilities to ourselves and each other…”
Watch as Rachel Maddow and democratic strategist Chris Kofinis discuss the dust up…