President Barack Obama’s chief political strategist, David Axelrod, wants America to take the two-decade relationship between Obama, the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, and the Trinity United Church of Christ (TUCC) on Chicago’s south side off the electoral issues table in the 2012 presidential election campaign.
Axelrod said as much in a speech delivered on January 10 as part of the Distinguished Speaker Series of Southern California. There is apparently no evidence that he expressed a similar desire relative to Mitt Romney’s Mormonism, Newt Gingrich’s and Rick Santorum’s Catholicism, or Rick Perry’s evangelical Christianity. What a surprise.
You might think that Axelrod’s argument would be that Obama attempted to personally distance himself from Wright’s black liberation theology-based radicalism and fundamental hostility to his country in late March of 2008, and that he quit TUCC two months later.
Nope. Axelrod made it clear that he is pushing for a full historical “re-Wright” of a critical aspect of Barack Obama’s life when he told his California audience that the negativity surrounding Wright, who when last tracked was targeting a luxurious retirement in the 98% non-African-American Chicago suburb of Tinley Park, is the result of a ginormous media-driven misunderstanding. Axelrod’s axiom is that initial reports about Wright selectively used “ninety seconds of vitriol plucked from thirty years of sermons by some enterprising opposition researcher.”
Axelrod’s implication, of course, is that 90 seconds of “vitriol,” a word which as defined carries an implicit assumption of underlying truth (better words and terms describing the substance of Wright’s rants would include slander, defamation, overt racism, hatred, and lies), is all that could be found. His 90-second limitation quickly leads to what has been and what the left wants to remain as the mother of all 2008 presidential campaign fictions, namely that Obama did not know that Wright was a racist America-hater.
One can almost prove the contention wrong based on other video evidence alone. The March 13, 2008 report broadcast by Brian Ross at ABC (now at YouTube; the incomplete text summary at ABC’s web site, which once had the video, no longer does) stated that it had “reviewed more than a dozen sermons offered for sale by the Church,” and clearly could have provided far more material in its report if more time had been available. In an interview with Fox News’ Major Garrett the very next day, Obama characterized himself as a “regular in spurts” TUCC churchgoer. Thanks to Wright’s abundant variety of Africa-inspired vestments, we know that his most controversial comments occurred in at least a half-dozen separate sermons. The likelihood that frequent attendee Obama didn’t hear any of them, or about any of them, is quite remote.
Then there’s the video shown here, where at the 3:10 mark, Wright tells his congregation:
… one of our members just might … turn the tables on white supremacy and have a black woman sleeping legally at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.