Barack Obama, D-Ill., went further than he has before in admitting that he did not express himself as well as he could have in his initial comments at a San Francisco fundraiser this week about “bitter”small-town Pennsylvania voters.
“I didn’t say it was well as I could have,” Obama confessed today during a town hall in Muncie, Ind., in response to the controversy he described as a “political flare-up because I said something that everyone knows is true.”
He then launched into a broad explanation of what he was trying to express: “There are a whole bunch of folks in small towns in Pennsylvania, in towns right here in Indiana, in my home town in Illinois, who are bitter. They are angry… So I said, well ya know, when you’re bitter, you turn to what you can count on. So people, ya know they vote about guns or they take comfort from their faith, and their family, and their community, and they get mad about illegal immigrants who are coming over to this country, or they get frustrated about how things are changing. That’s a natural response.”
But these traditions that get passed on from generation to generation are important, he said.
“People don’t feel like they're being listened to," Obama said. "And so they pray and they count on each other and they count on their families. You know this in your own lives. And what we need is a government that is actually paying attention, a government that is actually fighting for working people day in and day out, making sure that we are trying to allow them to live out the American dream.”