Washington (CNN) - A White House official is defending controversial comments President Obama made in a weekend speech to the Congressional Black Caucus.
“It was meant as a rallying cry,” the official said.
As the president was nearing the end of his speech he tried to pump up the audience with a rift punctuated by loud applause.
“I am going to press on for jobs,” he said, then telling those in the room, “I expect all of you to march with me and press on. Take off your bedroom slippers, put on your marching shoes. Shake it off. Stop complaining, stop grumbling, stop crying.”
Representative Maxine Waters, D-California, told CNN she found the comment “curious,” and she speculated that the president had gone “off script.”
The White House official said that in fact it was an ad-lib moment, but insisted that the audience gave the president more than a warm embrace.
Not really defensible. You talked down to your own base.
Wow! How hypocritical!...I just read your comments on the CNN article talking about how Herman Cain thinks that all black are "brainwashed" into voting for Democrats. You said that blacks just want to be "taken care of", "a handout" and "welfare".... But when the President challenges blacks to get up and stop playing victim and to fight for the causes they believe in you say he's "talking down to his base"...You Sir are what's wrong with American politics today.
I hate to break it to you, Rick, but Obama's base is way more diverse than just black Americans. The black vote accounts for only about 10% of the total vote. You cannot get elected without support from the majority of all Americans.
But don't let that stop you from putting down our President every chance you get. Probably makes you feel like Beck would be proud of you, I will bet. Oh, on that not, you do know that Beck is Mormon, right? I have always been curious about how that works out for the "Teavangelists" who normally dump on anyone not like them.
*on that note*
LOL – you know the state of the black base when YOUR President tells you to get off your arse.
Ah Maxine Waters – another big mouth of color!
your ignorant trash
This was a speech that reflected a perspective that is completely disconnected from reality. It's almost on the "let them eat cake!" level of ignorance and insensitivity. It also resonates with an air of entitlement: "I am entitled to your obeisance because I am black!" and is the reverse use of the race card. Imagine if a white guy had made these comments? Oh my!
My guess is the President was trying to remind his supporters that it takes more than one person to usher in any kind of change. His slogan in 2008 was Yes We Can but at times it's felt that the Democratic party and members within have forgotten the "we" part. If the people applauded and greeted his statements positively in the room than I would argue those trying to make more out of this are essentially just trying to make more out of it.
I find it disturbing however how much actual racism seems to be appearing these days. Even some of the comments under this article cross a real line of racial division. I would love to see a movement to reach out to those who have bias and try to educate them on how similar we all are and how we share the same dreams and goals.
Well you need to talk to your brothers on all their racist remarks they bash Sarah Palin and the Teaparty with who is only interested in the government running according to the Constitution. The least of for the past 3 years has been tossed out the window. The first to yell racist on every sentence that has been spoken is I guess you know who? so therefore it did bring out the race card. As long as people act ignorant there will be ignorance joining them of all races. If Obama did not have the gangster connections as his CZARS an his contributors like George Soros you could take a little more confidence with him. But at this moment he appears as a destroyer instead of a fixer.
Wrong! First of all the speech was to the Congressional Black Caucus. They are in no way, shape, or form, poor downtrodden and or unemployed. They make six figures and have great health insurance, get plenty of vacations and kick-backs from lobbyist. So spare us with the "poor-CBC" spiel. The BOTTOM LINE is this: Black unemployment has been disproportionately high compared the the rest of the country/other groups since WAAAY before Pres. Obama stepped onto the scene. Its higher now, because the overall unemployment level is high, but even in the best of times its been disproportionately high among AAs. And what has the CBC been doing about it? Some of the members have been in office for decades. The President is not stupid. He knows that the CBC, in all of its complaining and railing against him, is attempting to divert attention away from themselves by trying to blame an ongoing, systemic problem (in a system that many of them have been a part of for years/decades) on a President who inherited the worse economic climate since the great depression and has only been in office for 2 1/2 years (btw ecnomist predicted in 2009 that it would take at least 5-7 years to get this economy back on track). They should be glad that that's ALL he said.
Im not really sure how our president is honestly supposed to adequately address the concerns of blacks. If he does targeted unemployment reduction programs, than he will be essentially promoting rascism by making ethnicity a way of prioritizing policy, yet anything less than that will leave them grumbling and discontent. The same goes for the 'latino' vote: everyone wants an 'us first' solution, but the reality is it cannot be honorably done. The only solution is to do an 'all at one' job promotion with proviso's to try to gingerly target the needy groups of society. The irony is that I suppose this will be humorously seen as a 'white folks first' argument, and used against him to paint him as an ethnic traitor and opportunist by his opponents.
He should be talking to all Americans and not to blacks when they band together. Something smells of race pandering to me. We the People include ALL AMERICANS and to have special caucases for blacks is put us back a few notches with our work that has been done to avoid such discrimination .
I bet Don Imus could say it and get away with it. In fact, I bet he wrote the speach for him. lmao
Fiery?? Oh stop it.
Entirely defensible! Mr. President was spot on. Now if the shoe doesn't fit, then he WAS NOT talking to you. However, if the shoe does fit, then what he said might strike a nerve or two...and that's a good time to look in the mirror and ask the hard question(s) of yourself. A great many within the so-called "base" (I would argue that we a part of the President's base supporters, but NOT the base in its entirety) like to gripe, whine, second-guess, and undermine matters instead of truly supporting the President through ACTION.
Yes Daryl....you are right on!! All races need to do as he suggests and act like true Americans!
Taking off your bedroom slippers ... now that's controversial and fiery! lmao
" March with me" Please – Mr president you are no Martin Luther King --verbose and anrgy language will not get you reelected; we need a leader this time around.
If the Dems want to keep control of the white House and Senate, the best thing they could do would be to find someone to challenge Obama in the Democratic Primary -– Any Dem other than Obama has a chance of winning - but not Obama; his track record is too muddied, and his message is stale and defies credibility
First, it is impossible for "Dems" to keep control of the House, since they don't currently have it.
Second, I seriously doubt you are Democrat, so to attempt to be snide and give "Dems" advice really doesn't make much sense.
Ok, after I posted, I saw that you said 'white House', not the House. My bad. See, even perfect people make mistakes.
Everything anyone says is controversial according to the media.
Do we have a Congressional White Caucus?
And why don't we?
Because Dean, that would be racist.
you do dean its called the tea party cuacus
The entire Congress is the White Congressional Caucus, by default. The Senate in particular has ZERO blacks in it.
I believe you do in the south. Do I actually have to name it for you? Please become educated or refrain from interacting with the ones who are!
It's this kind of overstatement by an agitated black man that turns off too many folks in the dominant white culture where such exhortations are not as widely used and which detract from your credibility. There are shades of Pastor Wright and other radicals. He can dispense with the pandering to the 'hood and blacks will still overwhelmingly vote for Democrats. They have no rational choice. Cain is not rational.
Cain has a lot of common Sense. And that is a good thing.
I have to admit, I like some of his ideas on taxes. However, I don't agree with much else in his platform. It would be interesting to see him continue to gain popularity, though. It would be interesting to see how much those Teavangelists would squirm if they thought he actually had a chance at the nomination. Their backtracking would probably make a crab proud.
Your an idiot.
Wow...if you call someone an idiot, try not to look like one yourself. YOU'RE an idiot, if I do say so myself. And I do.
Lets see, take off your slippers and wear your boots to fight for what you stand for. Thanks Mr President, if we had done this in 2010, these tea baggers would not have been in Congress. We'll make sure they are sent home in 2012...
I don't blame Obama for being the worst, most unqualified President in memory...I lay that at the feet of the misguided electorate that voted for him...
I voted for Obama in 2008, and I will again in 2012 unless Republicans nominate a moderate like Huntsman or a strong independent-type like Paul. Elect a Teavangelist and my vote goes to Obama, no questions asked. I would rather vote for a candidate, but if you force me to vote against a candidate, believe me, I will.
By the way, my vote has gone to every winning candidate since Reagan's second term (when I was old enough to vote). That is how centrist I am; I do not vote along party lines. So nominate Perry if you will. It will just mean 4 more years of Obama. You have my vote on it.
You got a bingo with your response!
Sonnie2: Yup. And if I had to choose between Obama and McCain again, trust me, my vote would again go to Obama. And by the way, I am a registered Republican (ok, mostly because I live in a state where you have to be Republican to vote in the Republican primaries and I want to vote for Ron Paul).
Correction. George W. Bush was the worst president. He couldn't even figure out the right country to go to war with so people that I knew and other died for no reason. It appears you support the Repulican viewpoint and they have created war, death, poverty, crime and hate. Sorry. This president does not support that. In the infamous word of Mr. Cain, I pray for u.
PLEASE...............CNN get a little bit of a life..........................what should he had said, what would had worked for you ............. "go whitie go" PLEASE.
The only thing the CBC would be satisfied with is if the President promised to confiscate the wealth of the rich and pass it out like dime bags of weed to the economic machines most of the CBC members represent.
Wow. That wasn't racist at all. Whoever said that TP people were bigots must have been delusional.
I didn't find the President's comments curious at all. In fact I thought he was on-point. May be what the President said came too close to the truth for some elected officials. Please stop blaming every adverse situation surrounding the black commuinty on the President. Some of these elected officials and so-called-community leaders have been around far longer than the President been in office and these are not new issues or concerns; in fact I believe part of the problem rest at the feet of those complaining – where was the "curiousity" before 2008?
Amen to you Mike and to you XWngLady
“It was meant as a rallying cry,” the official said. They got it all wrong .It was supposed to say,"“It was meant as a crying rally" .That's all obama has done is cry ,whine, and blame everybody else for his huge failures and failed policies that are dragging this country down.
"Dragging this country down." I sometimes wonder what kind of reality you anti-Obama freaks live in. We were losing hundereds of thousands of jobs a month when he took office. That was turned around until the Tea Party's debt ceiling fiasco, but it is still stabalized. The dow at less than 7,000 when he took office. It is down a bit lately, but nowhere near where it was. The housing market stabalized. The big car manufacturers saved (as well as having paid back their 'evil stimulus' money).
At the point where our country was when Obama took office, to 'drag it down' would have meant another Great Depression. That clearly did not happen, so there goes your theory. I take it you are not an economist? Thought so.
The most divisive, arrogant, racist, inflammatory President in the History of the United States!
You forgot the most black.
Dear Skankphace, Thanks for such a completely dumb posting... You don,t know me and yet you judge me as racist...Loosers like you can only deal in terms of their own blind racism.
Really CNN you are going to quote Maxine Waters? She is a crocked NAACP awarded idiot. Her record speaks for herself. Google Youtube videos of her blunders and slip ups.. Need a more credible person to get information from I know how about Jessie Jackson Oh my bad another one of those NAACP people.
1. "Bedroom slippers" – Oh no he did not just say that. Oh, my God. "Bedroom slippers" has never been a part of any offensive or derogatory repertoire
that I have ever heard off. It sounds like people making up stuff. "Stop complaining, stop grumbling, stop crying.” that gas got to be for the Republicans and the extremist group called the Tea party. I know I would like to know what tangible real proposals have the Republican party and that extremist group had to offer. The Axis of Negativity – Speaker Boehner, Rep. Cantor and Sen. McConnell have failed to produce any significant economic legislation. The Axis have made their personal vendetta against President Obama priority over the need for Americans to get back to work.
"The Axis of Negativity" – That is great. We need to work hard to make that one stick. It certainly is the truth.
This whole thing is ridiculous.The president gave the team a pep talk.The only people that misunderstood and were offended by those words are probably the people that have been unjustly criticizing him for not doing enough.
...and the media
no reason to get all work-up about the president's comments. Keep in mind that he's soft as a baby ass! tough talk from a fake ass leader...
watch the entire speech in context please before commenting!
OMG: Is this all the Teabaggers have on Obama? What a joke. They must be pretty desperate if this is newsworthy!
LOL! Dean there are plenty of white caucuses in CONGRESS. They meet most times in secret, just like the Klan does! The 'Gang of Six' was an example of the types of white caucuses that do come together whenever they deem it necessary or decide to make deals, go in behind closed doors and make up new rules and policies that ultimately affect some Americans. The whole Congress could be percieved as the CONGRESSIONAL WHITE CAUCUS, really! That's why the FEW blacks decided on a 'caucus' inside the BIG CAUCUS.
What was wrong with what he said? Is this really what is supposed to be controversial?? If you're this sensitive I suggest you remember, "Don't retreat, Reload!"
It's sad to say..but the truth will make us free! After all of our history even in this day and time, this nation's mindset still falls on 'WHITE ONLY'..'COLOREDS TO THE BACK'! Whether it is acknowledged or denied, conscious or unconscious, covert or overt, ther's still a 'white system' in America. There are blacks and whites who know it! Blacks and whites feel it too! Oh, it didn't end when OBAMA won, it blew up and has escalated ever since he's been in the WH! You're just a bunch of white racist cowards!
Liz Carter in Georgia, You are exactly right. Will it ever change? I think only if we stop lying about it. You know like"one of my best friends is black" B-S-!
To be honest, Liz, I fully expected the racists to come out of the woodwork when Obama got elected. It started early in his campaign for the Democrat ticket, when fat white ladies from Virginia were saying "We don't need another Hussein".
However, I have to admit that I never expected it to get as bad as it has. My opinion of my country has definitely taken a turn for the worse these last 3 years.
Liz, Do you think your prejudiced-laced mind can ever understand that it's not a race thing...it's a Constitutional thing? Go Herman Caine!
just vote dem, its better than working. kick back and collect well fair and food stamps.
I'd like to know exactly how many registered Democrats do you personally know who collect welfare and food stamps?...BTW if you're going to try to put people down, you should at least learn to spell welfare correctly.
lol xwing. By the way he talks, I am willing to bet he has been on "well fair" for quite some time. However, he will keep voting Republican because "God told him to". It was that night he left the radio on by accident and Limbaugh had come on during his sleep.
Good post Blackman in America...tell it like it is. It's racism pure and simple. Until we ALL are truly free of that 'bondage', they can't even begin to get into a full fledged class war; many of us have money too! Oh, they didn't mean for that to happen..but it did. They're trying their best to stop that from continuing pulling out all of the stops; yet there is still a great percentage of us who are working poor, and just plain poor! Problem is there are many more of them poor than there are us!
"Problem is there are many more of them poor than there are us!"
Well, the bigger problem is that the whites who are poor have been convinced, somehow (don't ask me how), to support the Tea Party.
Oh, by the way, in case anybody feels a need to respond to this comment, I am white, so please don't accuse my comment of being racist. However, I am not poor, on welfare (or "well fair" as some edumecated person put it), on food stamps, or on unemployment. That being said, I usually vote Democrat. Go figure.
I am just surprised that anyone is still listening to Obama reading from a teleprompter! Soemone needs to inform Obama that at some point in his presidency, he needs to stop talking and start delivering on his promises! Talk is cheap (esp Obama's).
Boy, you really didn't feel the need to read the article at all before responding did you?
"Reading the headline and then giving a negative comment is good enough for me" must be your motto.
Obama is a true "rock star"! I want a rock star coach!
Admit it: you just want a rock.
Wow, what perspective!
Yeah. Kind of blows your earlier 'teleprompter' comment out of the water, doesn't it.
See what happens when you actually read the article? You don't speak out of context as often.
How's that for a concept?
Great article but it didn't have evertynihgI didn't find the kitchen sink!
Representative Maxine Waters, please Obama isn't perfect but he is by far the least of the evils in politics right now. Please attack Herman Cain for his brainwashing comments rather than attack a fellow Democrat. You wouldn't see a tea bagger attack another bagger.
I wouldn't worry about Cain. He is just running high from his win in the Florida straw poll. He still doesn't realize that the win was much more a referendum on Social Security than it was support for him. He will find out the hard way that the majority of the Tea Party will never support him, for reasons that should be obvious. They want Perry.
Hopefully, enough of the other Republicans throw their support behind a moderate like Huntsman or a strong independent-type like Paul or 2012 will be only be interesting because of the Senate races.
I must have missed something .... why are we talking about that?
Mr President this comment comes from a African American......Dont assume we are just going to be there for you
Obama talk about anything, but his record. Why? Because it's so ugly. In can bet HE GOING TO LOOSE BIG TIME IN 2012.
Thanks for your good comments scarface...I agree with you 99%. Thankyou for acknowledging your race to me and yet still being able to see, understand, and acknowledge the truth of what I see, have seen, and it seems will continue to see as a Black American woman; Unless this thing is totally and completely addressed and put in a 'grave' soon. Racism may have been put to 'rest' last time, but until it's put to 'death' in AMERICA, once and for all...America will continue to face most of its other issues!
Hi Liz. By the way, I have a private page on facebook. Search for 'Skar Phace' and add me as a friend and we can talk in private sometime. I never give my real name on these blogs.
Just so you know (to get a bit personal), I am not your typical whiteboy. My parents adopted many multiracial kids (28 altogether, so with me and one other brother being biological, that makes 30). Some are from Vietnam, some from Korea, one from Brazil, one from the Phillapines, a couple from India, and even those from America were usually either handicapped or biracial (mostly black/hispanic).
So this should shed some light on why I recognize the racial hatred that has been spewing since our President has been in office.
Oh, by the way, what was the other 1%? ;-)
Controversial!!??!!?? Give us all a break as you search for " NEWS".
"Obama's strong exhortation on Jobs to CBC" is more accurate as a headline.
But that would not be "DRAMATIC ENOUGH." SHAME ON US ALL AND YOU MEDIA FOR NEEDING THE DRAMA RATHER THAN FACTS.
Well, the President is quite correct! One has to get involved if one wants to support him and I do not consider that “talking down”. And to get up is not only for “him”- this is for us. While we at it, we better also work for a Congress and Senate he can work with during his second term. Than – and only then – will we move into a good future for all without being blackmailed from the GOP/TP!
This is what i do not like about how touchy people are these days, after all he said that night, it was the part where he was crying for people to get off their backside and fight that some will want to hold on to. This was surely taken out of context. He wants people to be fired up once again and not approach the on coming elections like the last congressional elections. Was that the summary of his message that night?...NOOOO!! But people will rather hold on to that.
@fredmaint 1, you don't know me either, so don't push it! I'm a 'Southern Girl', decended from 5 generations of which were denied that good ole' 'Southern Hospitality'! I know it when I see it, Mr! You want to label me as a 'prejudice-laced mind' then so be it. I guess Jim Crow laced it well! BTW, I've been called worse! Wisdom, knowledge, experience, intellect, discernment, and courage are weapons when they're in the 'wrong' hands aren't they? Constitutional thing? Be teachable...you might learn something.
@scarface; I'm sorry I re-read your post a little more closely, and I can agree with you 100%! The statement about Ron Paul kind of threw me. LOL! However, for a REPUBLICAN candidate he would be the best choice, I think. He's the only one in the whole 'lot' of them who seems to be a REAL REPUBLICAN; an old Abraham Lincoln/Ronald Reagan Republican. I could even appreciate him myself if it came down to it! LOL!
Good post Marry.
Obama acting like a preacher what a bullshit artist
the idiot is a Snake oil salesman just shucking and Jiving as always
I can't believe it.....whites, blacks, latinos bickering like ignorant little kids...white vs. black...democrat vs. republican. Are you serious? It's 2011! The minute you all can stop focusing on the color of someones skin or political affiliation, this world will become a better place! So sad, CNN really should require people to be intelligent to post comments!
I can't believe it.....whites, blacks, latinos bickering like little kids...white vs. black...democrat vs. republican. Are you serious? It's 2011! The minute you all can stop focusing on the color of someones skin or political affiliation, this world will become a better place! So sad, CNN really should require people to be intelligent to post comments!
In all thew time since his election Blacks were never even considered in his politics and now he believes that all he has to do is jump up infront of a podium like a preacher and we will all snap into attention. What he doesn't realize is the way he is used to conversating to Blacks and about Blacks comes from a White mentality. He really believes it's perfectly fine to denegrade blacks and we are just fine with it. GET YO ASSES OUT AND VOTE FO ME!
We did this to ourselves and now we have the nerve to actually complain. Where were the complaints in the beginning of the administration? Why did we not demand our issues be addressed? Because our leaders told us not to say anything. Why do you think he used the words "complaining" & "crying"? Because that is how he sees us.
It's always the same with us. We listen to our sold out black leaders who are always telling us to shut up, sit tight and one day our day will come and we totally believe it. Our day will come when we unite together and agree on what we want and demand it It shouldn't take a preacher to organize us and until then we wil always be the forgotten many, who will always be conquered because we will always be divided.
Now Onama has gotten what he asked for, Union Organized have put "their marching shoes on" with protests in major cities asking for Jobs, these protest will of course be costing these cities millions for increased police presence and property damages.
Nice going Zero!
@Deb77; sounds good doesn't it..but that's exactly what it IS about; Blacks vs Whites, Asians, Latinos vs Everybody..Liberals vs Conservatives aka Democrats vs Republicans, Republicans claiming, yet disclaiming parts or some of the anti-BIG GOVERNMENT rhetorical ideology, as in trying to have it both ways. LOL! Yep when we ALL need to get behind this president and his genuine efforts/attempts to straighten out, YES! At the minimum a decade of failed policies! Yep seems easy to do doesn't it? Won't happen.