‘Spare Me the Phony Outrage,’ Obama Says
September 10, 2008 - 11:17 AMSen. Barack Obama, appearing at a Norfolk, Va., high school Wednesday morning, responded to the "made-up controversy" involving Obama's own comment about "lipstick on a pig."
“Enough! I don’t care what they say about me. But I love this country too much to let them (Republicans) take over another election with lies and phony outrage and Swift Boat politics. Enough is enough.”
At a campaign appearance in rural Virginia on Tuesday, Obama questioned Sen. John McCain’s commitment to “change,” saying, “You can put lipstick on a pig. It's still a pig.”
Although he said it with a straight face, many Americans viewed the comment as a sly reference to Sen. John McCain’s running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who has joked that the only difference between a hockey mom and a pitbull is lipstick. (See earlier story)
The McCain campaign and its supporters expressed outrage, and by Wednesday morning, the Republican National Committee had produced an ad juxtaposing Obama’s and Palin’s “lipstick” comments -- and suggesting that Obama had deliberately insulted Palin.
“What their campaign has done this morning is the same game that has made people sick and tired of politics in this country,” Obama said on Wednesday. “They seize on an innocent remark, try to take it out of context, throw up an outrageous ad, because they know that it’s catnip to the news media.”
Obama said the American people end up losing when the important issues are not addressed. “The McCain campaign would much rather have a story about phony and foolish diversions than the future,” he said.
“These are serious times. And they call for a serious debate about where we need to take the nation.” Obama then listed some of the serious issues and warned that a McCain administration would continued the “failed” policies of the Bush administration.
“So spare me the phony outrage,” Obama said. “We have real problems in this country right now. And the American people are looking to us for answers, not distractions, not diversions, not manipulations. They want real answers to the real problems that we are facing. That’s the kind of debate that I intend to have, because that’s the kind of debate that the American people deserve.”
Recent polls indicate that white women are moving to the McCain campaign in large numbers.
According to the latest Washington Post/ABC News survey, white women back the McCain-Palin ticket over Obama-Biden, 53-41 percent. Before the conventions, they backed Obama over McCain by 50-42 percent.