Meantime, the Chicago Sun-Times’ Lynn Sweet reports that the Obama campaign told her Pfleger stepped down from “Catholics for Obama” a few weeks ago. She also has reaction from the area’s cardinal:
Obama spokesman Ben LaBolt said Pfleger stepped down from a ”Catholics for Obama” committee a few weeks ago, but would not say why.
The Clinton campaign at first had no comment, then Thursday evening said Obama did not go far enough in distancing himself from Pfleger. “Divisive and hateful language like that is totally counterproductive in our efforts to bring our party together and have no place at the pulpit or in our politics,” said a statement issued by Clinton spokesman Phil Singer. “We are disappointed that Senator Obama didn’t specifically reject Father Pfleger’s despicable comments about Senator Clinton, and assume he will do so.”
Chicago Sun-Times religion reporter Mike Thomas asked Cardinal Francis George’s office for a reaction, and his spokeswoman, Colleen Dolan said, ”The cardinal has made it clear to Father Pfleger in the past on more than one occasion that it’s inappropriate to speak about political issues from the pulpit and that his own personal opinions are his own personal opinions.”
The campaign of presumptive GOP nominee Sen. John McCain declined comment.
Pfleger is a longtime Obama friend and was in the audience at the National Press Club for that Wright press conference, and when we talked afterward, he realized Wright created a problem for Obama.
I was told Pfleger’s comments stunned some in the Obama camp because they expected him to be more politically savvy — and not take on Clinton, especially at Trinity, of all places.
Uh, where’s the IRS?
James Taranto at Best of the Web reminds readers of Pfleger’s tax-subsidized earmarks courtesy of his longtime friend Barack Obama.