You be the judge. Was Sen. Barack Obama being elitist (a description that appears in a headline in the Washington Post) when he told a group at a fundraiser in San Francisco this about rural Pennsylvania:

“You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing's replaced them,” Obama said. “And they fell through the Clinton Administration, and the Bush Administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. And it's not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.” (Audio of remarks here.)

Huffington Post reporter Mayhill Fowler, who reported the remarks, then observed: “Obama made a problematic judgment call in trying to explain working class culture to a much wealthier audience. He described blue collar Pennsylvanians with a series of what in the eyes of creamy Californians might be considered pure negatives: guns, clinging to religion, antipathy, xenophobia. I'm not sure this is what at least this lot of Californians needed to hear about Pennsylvanians.”

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