Barack Obama has said he is “deeply disappointed” at a supporter’s sermon that mocked Hillary Clinton, his rival in the Democratic nomination.
Rev Michael Pfleger (photo) said Hillary Clinton felt “entitled” to win because she was white, and that now she was forced to realise that there was “a black man stealing my show”.
“Divisive, backward-looking rhetoric”, said Barack Obama about the sermon.
In the same time, he said that he expects to be his party’s nominee, at the end of primary elections next week.
Later in Chicago, at Mr Obama’s Trinity United Church of Christ, Rev Pfleger has apologised for his sermon.
According to Associated Press news agency, Rev Pfleger said in the sermon: “[Hillary Clinton] just always thought that, ‘This is mine. I’m Bill’s wife. I’m white.'”
“And then, out of nowhere, came ‘Hey, I’m Barack Obama.’ And she said, ‘Oh damn, where did you come from? I’m white. I’m entitled. There’s a black man stealing my show.'”
‘All that unites us’
He added: “She wasn’t the only one crying. There was a whole lot of white people crying.”
In response, Mr Obama (photo) said in a statement: “As I have travelled this country, I’ve been impressed not by what divides us, but by all that unites us.”
“That is why I am deeply disappointed in Father Pfleger’s divisive, backward-looking rhetoric, which doesn’t reflect the country I see or the desire of people across America to come together in common cause.”
Rev Pfleger said the words in his sermon were “inconsistent with Senator Obama’s life and message and I am deeply sorry if they offended Senator Clinton or anyone else who saw them”.
This is not the first time Barack Obama has problems with a clergyman during the nomination campaign. He also denounced the claim by Rev Jeremiah Wright that the 9/11 attacks were an example of “America’s chickens coming home to roost”. Mr Wright is the Rev who officiated at Mr Obama’s wedding and baptised his daughters.
Mr Obama said, in an interview with the BBC’s Katty Kay, that the general election campaign, against Republican John McCain, would begin in earnest after next week, when the primaries end.
Ahead in delegates so far, Mr Obama is confident that he will won enough of the remaining delegates to clinch the nomination.
If she could persuade enough superdelegates or senior party to back her, Hillary Clinton (photo) could still win.
The party’s nominee will be chosen by the delegates at a nominating convention in August, and the one who has the most delegates will win.
While the unelected superdelegates are free to vote for whoever they like, some delegates are “pledged” to vote according to the results of the primaries held in their state.
Puerto Rico and the South Dakota on Sunday, and Montana on Tuesday, are the only primaries remaining.
The doctor who has treated Mr Obama for the past twenty years said he was in excellent health, with good blood pressure, low cholesterol and no signs of heart disease.
He also jogs regularly and has no excess body fat, even thoug Barack Obama, 46, has a family history of cancer and a smoking habit he has tried to break, said his doctor.
Last week, John McCain, 71, released his medical records which said that he was also fit to run for the presidency. The Republican nominee has been treated successfully for skin cancer and takes medicine to control his cholesterol.