Huckabee: Lay Off Obama Pastor

Former minister goes to bat for controversial figure
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 20, 2008 8:05 AM CDT
Huckabee: Lay Off Obama Pastor
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee pauses while speaking at a primary watch party, Tuesday, March 4, 2008, in Irving, Texas.    (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

(Newser) – Barack Obama got some unexpected help yesterday from Mike Huckabee, of all people. The former candidate called Obama’s speech “historic” and said it wasn’t fair to hold candidates accountable for everything the people near them say, ABC News reports. Huckabee, once a pastor himself, said he understood how Wright could get “caught up in the emotion” of an extemporaneous sermon and warned against taking his comments out of context.

Though Huckabee said “nobody could defend” Wright’s outrageous statements, he did sympathize with the racial anger. “As easy as it is for those of us who are white to look back and say, "That's a terrible statement," I grew up in a very segregated South, and I think that you have to cut some slack,” he said. He predicted that the issue wouldn't affect Obama in October if he's the nominee. (Read more Mike Huckabee stories.)

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