Friday, Oct. 09, 2009

Annie Get Your Gun

At a San Francisco fundraiser in April 2008, two weeks before the Pennsylvania primary, Obama addressed supporters on how chronic unemployment had affected the Quaker State: "You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing's replaced them," Obama explained. "And it's not surprising, then, they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or antitrade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations."

Unfortunately for Obama, the closed-to-the-press event was attended — and recorded — by blogger Mayhill Fowler, a 60-year-old "citizen journalist" who writes for and the Huffington Post. Fowler posted Obama's comments on the Web, writing, "For the first time, I realized he is an elitist." Though Obama later refused to disavow his remark, he admitted he could have phrased it better. His Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton, went on to win the Pennsylvania primary by 10 points.