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Excerpts of Seven Year-Old Obama Interview Cause Stir

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Excerpts of Seven Year-Old Obama Interview Cause Stir

In 2001, Chicago Public Radio interviewed then Illinois State Senator Barack Obama about civil rights. Over the weekend, someone posted excerpts of the interview, edited to misrepresent Obama’s statements. The item is now catching national attention.

Click here for Obama’s full interviews.

The clips are taken from an interview that aired in January of 2001. Then State Senator Obama is one of three legal scholars interviewed for a show about civil rights. Over the weekend, someone pulled excerpts of the show and posted them to You Tube—and today, the posting caught fire on political blogs, the Drudge Report, and Fox News.

The 4 minute spliced collection of clips portrays Obama as advocate a redistribution of wealth through the power of the Supreme Court. That folds in with some allegations by the McCain Palin campaign.

The twist here is that, when heard in the context of the whole show, Obama’s position is distinctly misrepresented by the You Tube posting. Taken in context, Obama is evaluating the historical successes and failures of the Civil Rights movement—and, ironically, he says the Supreme Court was a failure in cases that it took on a role of redistributing resources.

The McCain campaign told ABC News it plans to use the material to bolster its criticism of Obama.

I’m Ben Calhoun, Chicago Public Radio.

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