The Rev. Jeremiah Wright says criticism surrounding his fiery sermons is an attack on the black church.
Barack Obama's longtime pastor says he hopes the controversy will have a positive outcome and spark an honest dialogue about race in America. Wright says black church traditions are still "invisible" to many Americans, as they have been throughout the country's history.
Politico's Mike Allen has more:
The Rev. Jeremiah Wright said Monday that he will try to chance national policy by â€œcoming afterâ€� Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) if he is elected president.
The pastor also insisted Obama â€œdidnâ€™t denounceâ€� him and â€œdidnâ€™t distance himselfâ€� from Wrightâ€™s controversial remarks, but â€œdid what politicians do.â€�
Wright implied Obama still agrees with him by saying: â€œHe had to distance himself, because he's a politician, from what the media was saying I had said, which was [portrayed as] anti-American.â€�
Wright spoke at the National Press Club Monday morning before the Washington press corps and a supportive audience of black church leaders beginning a two-day symposium.
He said the black church tradition is not bombastic or controversial, but different and misunderstood by the "dominant culture" in the United States.
This video is from CNN.com, broadcast April 28, 2008.