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Obama Tells Letterman: I Was Black Before the Election

President Obama and Dave Letterman

President Obama and Dave Letterman

CBS—Addressing suggestions that recent criticism of his health care reform efforts has been grounded in racism, President Obama this afternoon quipped, “I think it’s important to realize that I was actually black before the election.”

The comment, which the president made in an afternoon taping of CBS’ “The Late Show,” promoted laughter from the audenice and this response from host David Letterman: “How long have you been a black man?”

Mr. Obama said the notion that racism is playing a role in the criticism, which has been voiced by former President Jimmy Carter and others, is countered in part by the fact that he was elected in the first place – which, he said, “tells you a lot about where the country’s at.”

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