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April 21st, 2008
01:50 PM ET

Why is Gov. Rendell so silent today about Louis Farrakhan?

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/21/art.rendell2.jpg%5D

Roland S. Martin
360° Contributor and Radio Host

Associations, associations, associations.

Words, words, words.

I keep writing about them because they are all quite interesting.

Sen. Barack Obama¹s longtime pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, has been at the center of a lot of criticism, including his relationship with Nation of Islam leader, Minister Louis Farrakhan.

As I've written before, folks should be careful to not use one person's praise against their opponent because you might have to do the same to one of your supporters.

In the ABC debate, Sen. Hillary Clinton again brought up Rev. Wright's association with Farrakhan. Trust me, it wasn't positive. And in the previous debate with Obama on MSNBC, she called on him to repudiate and denounce Farrakhan¹s unsolicited praise of the junior senator from Illinois.

A lot of folks have commented on the issue, but one person who has been real quiet has been Gov. Ed Rendell.

Maybe that's because as mayor of Philadelphia, Rendell, who is Jewish, had some really wonderful things to say about Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam.

You can hear his words for yourself by clicking here: (part 1 and part 2).

Now, for a broader discussion about individuals and words, should Rendell renounce his prior praise, delivered in a passionate speech? Or do we learn a lesson by seeing individuals through more than one lense?

I would love to ask Rendell if he feels the same about Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam today as he did 11 years ago?


Filed under: Raw Politics • Roland S. Martin
soundoff (73 Responses)
  1. Taj

    Randell is a wise man about Farakkan. After all he is jewish. Silence is sovereign sometimes.

    April 22, 2008 at 10:49 am |
  2. sherry

    Also you can see the video on youtube of Rendell and Farrakhan!!!!

    April 22, 2008 at 10:12 am |
  3. sherry

    Why is this video not shown on CNN for voters to see just as Rev, Wright video was shown? I think Obama is scutinized and held to a much higher standard than Clinton. What's goes for him should go for her as well. It think this is another form of racism and bias against Obama. The media just dont want to touch this because is deals with Clinton's camp rejecting and denouncing. Good and fair reproting as usual Roland. NOW, LETS GET THIS STORY OUT!!!

    April 22, 2008 at 10:05 am |
  4. avembe

    Why is CNN not talking about RENDELL's link with Farrakhan and will HRC demand rejection and denounciation or not ?Questions are simple

    April 22, 2008 at 8:13 am |
  5. Janice

    I bet Gov. Rendell wont get hammered about his association with Farrakauhn.

    April 22, 2008 at 5:45 am |
  6. Janice

    Why don't you call him on the show and ask him, and while your at it why not ask Clintons what Rev. Wright was doing in the White House, since she wanted to bring up Farrakhaun.

    April 22, 2008 at 5:41 am |
  7. Jan

    Will Hillary denounce and reject him? Is this a judgement or experience oversight? Explosive and very hypocritical.

    April 22, 2008 at 2:30 am |
  8. blogitforu

    Politics is very Hard to follow

    April 22, 2008 at 2:03 am |
  9. Pennsylvania for Obama

    Today Michael Moore endorsed Obama and posted a letter on his website which mentioned that Hillary Clinton, when she and Bill were having marital difficulties regarding the whole Monica thing, brought Rev. Wright to the White House for spiritual counseling. This information needs to be told to the uninformed voters. Help us Roland.

    April 22, 2008 at 12:57 am |
  10. glen loves whitney houston

    hey, its not only a coverup its called racism pure an simple

    April 22, 2008 at 12:53 am |
  11. Chico

    This has got to be racism at it's best, I can only imagine the media people that has known and viewed this clip for sometime. When will it stop!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 22, 2008 at 12:28 am |
  12. sue B

    Roalnd: you are so right and in such a good way!

    How Clearly Truthful! And how come this particular topic is not making headlines or drawing panels after panels from CNN's pundits and alike??
    Association can not start and stop with Obama...count MaCain and Clinton in also. See where do you see their associations will lead us to.

    Read "Forbidden Truth".

    Negative campaigning has brought BITTERNESS and devisiveness let us vote for OBAMA's positive outlook and HOPE for ALL. Stop pointing fingers!

    April 21, 2008 at 11:57 pm |
  13. EJ - Ohio

    It is SAD that hardly anyone has said a word about this. I was waiting to see if there would be coverage. That is just sad.

    Hillary's campaign should be ashamed. I am just not impressed with their dirty politics. I know that the Clintons learned how to play the game long ago when they were on the receiving end but much of her campaign tactics have just left a "bitter" taste in my mouth.

    Furthermore, Rendell can be on video praising Farrakhan and also making stupid statements about white voters in PA – and not have to answer for any of it.

    The hypocrisy is not at all pretty.

    April 21, 2008 at 11:17 pm |
  14. duane

    Roland, I enjoy you're commentary on CNN! You're always balanced, and you bring civility and keen insight to the process.

    I'm amazed–how is it that these kinds of revelations don't surface?! It almost seems there's a cover up.

    April 21, 2008 at 10:35 pm |
  15. Jenna W Mass

    This is too much !

    Is this blog the cross section of American University and High School Students? Are the Headlights of Unknown Stardom fogging your perception?

    Why would Americans of either Party stand behind a Man who has been reported to support, finance and agree to substantial grants for Palestinian Organizations opposed to Israel? Why would these same Americans stand behind a Man who reportedly received donations from William Ayers and Rashid Kalidhi. Ayers a reported to be a Terrorist, the other reported to be one of the largest public critics of Israel and also a Supporter of the same Palestinian Organization?

    Has seven years of the Bush Administration warped minds to this degree?

    April 21, 2008 at 10:26 pm |
  16. Kara

    I know that a number of us wrote to Larry King earlier today to get him to ask Hillary Clinton about this blatant hypocrisy. I sadly watched him loft softball questions to her this evening, and nothing about this issue. The MSM has no interest in fairness. They only seem to care about their ratings and dragging out the drama of this primary as long as possible. It seems as though the press is as out to lunch as they were during the run up to Iraq. Shameful silence. This hypocrisy needs to be aired.

    April 21, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  17. June

    He's said enough to turn people off. He and Bill should go out for a shot and a pint

    April 21, 2008 at 9:48 pm |
  18. Lou

    I thought this was supposed to be politics of the now and the future. Why are you Obamabots stuck in the past??? Do you feel the same way now about things as you did 11 years ago? People change.
    There is so much hate and lies against Hillary here that these posts have to be made up. Obama needs to quit playing his reverse psychology that he has employed since day one and even in his race for state rep. It's called "blame the opponent for everything you are guilty of.. It's not Hillary's fault that he has unsavory friendships or can't answer questions on taxes or gun policiy in a debate. Nice, he said he'll raise taxes and then realized he goofed up...Hillary was told she was untrustworthy in this debate. That is not true. Millions and millions of wise people trust Hillary because they know her heart. Hillary handled her tough questions just fine. It's that Obama is not very smart. Obama will not win in the GE and FL & MI votes need to be counted or this contest is not legitimate. Obama needs to stop blaming Hillary for his failure in the debate et al. He needs to start owning his own stuff.
    People have no idea who Obama is nor do they ask, but Charlie and George were the only ones with the kahunas to ask.
    Unsavory characters for friends, change and hope like Bush promised us..not the things we really need right now...we are heading for a depression this year...And no way a senior person would vote for empty suit Obama. Seniors can't be fooled like the college kids can...I know this won't post because it's pro Hilllary and all I see are bash Hillary comments or Pro Oblahma comments.
    This is a poor excuse for journalism. My dog could do better.

    April 21, 2008 at 9:47 pm |
  19. bambambooey

    Chuck in Alabama, you're not seeing the big picture. It's very true that this video is 11 years old, and if it was brought to light any other time, it wouldn't have made too many waves. Keep in mind Hillary hammered Obama about his "connections" to Farrakhan, and then, low and behold, one of Hillary's biggest supporters, in the state she needs to win, is seen with *gasp* Louis Farrakhan. Uh, oh, he's shaking the man's hand. On video! Quick, get me some footage of Obama and Farrakhan.

    . . .

    That's the hypocrisy.

    It has nothing to do with Reverend Wright.

    April 21, 2008 at 9:45 pm |
  20. Kevin Leo from Jonesboro, GA

    This is another example of a story being buried by the pro-clinton supporters in the media. What about Paul vs clinton? How come we haven't heard more about Clinton's campaign manager and his comments in Canada re: NAFTA? Why hasn't the media taken a harder look at how poorly Clinton has run her campaign from a financial stand point? If the situation was reversed and Barack had the same issues going on, he would be grilled in the media!!!

    April 21, 2008 at 9:43 pm |
  21. Grandmother in Oklahoma

    Roland Martin is and always been a Senator Obama supporter and refuses to address any thing negative about his MAN. Have watched him on TV and read his articles and I certainly would not consider this reporter to be rational on political topics. He simply criticizes any one who supports Senator Clinton.
    The media has not been fair or accurate in their coverage of this campaign. A poll of citizens stated 75 to 23 % mainstream media was more in favor of Obama. When one reads the postings on the blogs that are moderated, most postings in favor of Clinton are deleted. I had 4 in one day and no dirty words were used. Money and media are controlling this election.

    April 21, 2008 at 9:42 pm |
  22. Bob

    Nice job AC. Probably too late for the poor people of PA but – superdelegates take note!

    April 21, 2008 at 9:28 pm |
  23. Calvin in Raleigh, NC

    RENDELL ON STAGE W/ FARRAKHAN HEAPING PRAISE

    WILL HILLARY DENOUNCE & REJECT ED RENDELL??

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXum_-8I1TA

    April 21, 2008 at 9:25 pm |
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