Back in April, Obama discussed Reverend Wright with Chris Wallace:
WALLACE: Did you talk to reverend Wright recently about his decision to make a series of public appearances at this particular point?
OBAMA: You know, I didn’t talk to him about that. I had talked to him after all this had happened, partly because I regretted — I always regret people who are civilians, essentially, being dragged into these political fights.
And I expressed to him — I said, “Look, we have very strong differences. I do not agree with the comments that you made. On the other hand, I regret that you have drawn so much attention.”
Obama talking about his wife, back in July:
And I’ve said this before: I would never have my campaign engage in a concerted effort to make Cindy McCain an issue, and I would not expect the Democratic National Committee or people who were allied with me to do it. Because essentially, spouses are civilians. They didn’t sign up for this. They’re supporting their spouse.
I guess once you move beyond the inner circle, the definition of “civilian” becomes slightly hazier.