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Video: Obama Confuses Jews with Janitors

Obama starts to say “Jew” and quickly corrects himself to say “janitor” in a speech about the poor paying the same tax rates as the rich.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 9/27/2011, 3:51 PM

The president, who is noted for excellent oratory and rarely misses a beat, may simply have stumbled inadvertently, but the blooper indicates he has Jews on his mind as his popularity falls.

President Obama’s “down home” style was clearly appreciated by the crowd, and he responded accordingly, talking about his identification with poor people and the difficult history of Blacks in the United States.

“When you start saying, at a time when the top one-tenth of 1 percent has seen their incomes go up four or five times over the last 20 years, and folks at the bottom have seen their incomes decline – and your response is that you want poor folks to pay more?

"Give me a break.

"If asking a billionaire to pay the same tax rate as a Jew – uh – janitor makes me a warrior for the working class, I wear that with a badge of honor. I have no problem with that.”  

The official White House transcript omitted “Jew.”

Most media in the United States ignored the slip-up and instead focused on charges that the Associated Press was guilty of racism by reporting the president’s words as he said them, in a style that once was identified with uneducated blacks.

“Shake it off. Stop complainin'. Stop grumblin'. Stop cryin'. We are going to press on. We have work to do,” the AP reported, without adding the “g” to the end of the verbs.

Journalist and MSNBC contributor Karen Hunter said, “I think it’s inherently racist to do something like that,” but New Republic writer John McWhorter argued the AP report was more accurate and that other outlets “cleaned up” President Obama’s speech.

Past media reports of speeches by Sarah Palin and President George W. Bush also quoted them as speaking without the “g” at the end of some verbs.