Obama Responds to Nader’s Comment That He’s Trying to “Talk White”: “It Is What It Is”

By Natalie Gewargis

Jun 25, 2008 7:03pm

"First of all, what’s clear is that Ralph Nader hasn’t been paying attention to my speeches," Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, said late this afternoon at a press conference in Chicago, responding to criticism from presidential candidate Ralph Nader, "because all the issues that he talked about, whether it’s predatory lending or the housing foreclosure crisis or what have you are issues that the traveling press can tell you I’ve devoted multiple speeches, town hall meetings to throughout this campaign."

Obama continued: "Ralph Nader’s trying to get attention. He’s become a perennial political candidate. I think it’s a shame, because if you look at his legacy in terms of consumer protections, it’s an extraordinary one but at this point he’s somebody who’s trying to get attention and whose campaign hasn’t gotten any traction and so what better way to get some traction than to make an inflammatory statement like the one that he made. It is what it is."

Nader earlier today told the Rocky Mountain News Obama is trying to "talk white" by downplaying poverty issues. He also said Obama wants to show he’s not "another politically threatening African-American politician. He wants to appeal to white guilt. You appeal to white guilt not by coming on as black is beautiful, black is powerful. Basically he’s coming on as someone who is not going to threaten the white power structure, whether it’s corporate or whether it’s simply oligarchic. And they love it. Whites just eat it up."

Nader’s comments can be watched HERE.

- jpt

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