N.C. Clinton Adviser Bashes Obama "Small Town" Remarks While Introducing Bill

ABC News' Sarah Amos reports that at North Carolina Wesleyan College in Rocky Mount, N.C., Clinton campaign North Carolina chieftain Tom Hendrickson, a former state party chair, made much hay out of the "small town" comments made by Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.

Hendrickson was introducing former President Bill Clinton.

"I normally just come and talk about President Clinton and Senator Clinton at these, but today Senator Obama was out at a fundraiser at I guess a brie and chardonnay crowd in San Francisco," Hendrickson said. "But his quote talking about small towns in Pennsylvania -- and which applies to small towns across eastern North Carolina -- which is why it is relevant to this tour we are doing today. And his quote is 'and it is not surprising that they cling to guns and religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them, or anti-immigrant or anti-trade as a way to explain their frustration.'

"I listened to that quote and I got mad," Hendrickson said, "and I wanted to reach out to Senator Obama and say senator, we are from the rural part of eastern North Carolina. We are very proud of our heritage, we are proud of who we are. We are not frustrated. We are not bitter. We turn to our faith because we believe, and we hunt and fish because it is part of our culture and we enjoy it.

"And we do that because that is who we are and I say that today because as this campaign goes on and on it is about choices, it is about change. We are going to hear the master in a little bit tell you what you, why, what you need to hear about his wife Hillary Clinton. But I wanted to take this time to mention this to you because you will hear more about this as time goes on and it is really time to really evaluate these candidates up close and personal."

Amos points out that, interestingly, the crowd had little reaction at all. They, in fact, seemed a tad bored.

- jpt

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