"We believe the joke was inappropriate." - Olivia Alair, Campaign Press Secretary to the First Lady
Actor Robert DeNiro triggered a controversy for the Obama re-election campaign with racially-tinged remarks made Monday at a fund-raiser in New York headlined by First Lady Michelle Obama.
DeNiro's remarks--as noted in the pool report:
"Speaking behind a glass lectern on a small riser, Mr. De Niro started by deadpanning: "Callista Gingrich. Karen Santorum. Ann Romney. Now do you really think our country is ready for a white first lady?" The crowd roared and someone yelled "no!" as De Niro asked, "Too soon, right?"
READ THE ENTIRE POOL REPORT HERE.
below, from the Gingrich campaign.....
Gingrich Adviser Responds to Robert DeNiro's "First Lady" Comments
Atlanta, GA - Newt 2012 senior adviser Dr. Kiron Skinner issued the following statement in response to the comments made by actor Robert DeNiro at a fundraiser for Barack Obama last night.
"Racial comments and jokes degrade the political process. They have no place in this presidential campaign season. Robert DeNiro and other celebrities supporting President Barack Obama don't seem to think so. At a star-studded fundraiser in New York City last night, the actor declared that it is too soon for a white first lady. The crowd approved. The media and many others would decry an equivalent comment by a conservative or a Republican supporter of a presidential candidate.
"As a senior adviser in Speaker Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign and as an African American woman, I stand against comments like DeNiro's."
Dr. Kiron Skinner is a national co-chair of the Women with Newt Coalition and is a Hoover Institution Research Fellow and Director of the Center for International Relations and Politics at Carnegie Mellon University.