Paterson Tries Explaining His Comments Again

David Paterson hasn’t gotten any support for his claim last week that his political woes are due to racism in the media.

This morning, he went back on the show where he first aired the complaint to say he had been misunderstood. And after explaining his point, Paterson said he hoped this would be the end of it.

On the show, WRRL Morning Show with Errol Louis, Paterson said, “I was wrong to get into an assessment of how the media views me and I do not think that race has anything to do with my poll numbers, or anything to do with my political issues in this day. And shouldn’t have said it, straight out.”

Paterson said he was reacting to NY1 News anchor Dominic Carter’s earlier interview where he referred to the widely reported story of Paterson visiting a nightclub with his daughter, and staying out late. Paterson said it was a restaurant, not a club, and that he left by 9:30 p.m.

This morning, Paterson said, “In overacting to it, I probably lent to the suggestion that there is bias in the media. There’s bias everywhere but I don’t think there’s any particular bias towards me in the media or that the media is racist.”

Referring to his interview last week which touched off this firestorm, Paterson said, “And I don’t think that even that day I would have said the media was racist. But I was saying that there are instances where I feel there are negative stereotypes that get into situations.”

As Liz Benjamin notes, Louis had to step in at one point and save Paterson from himself.

“You know what? Let me cut you off here; you don’t have to explain what you think it was, because what I think you think it was is probably wrong.”

Paterson’s earlier criticism wasn’t just reserved for the mainstream media, but rather, included a pointed dig at minority journalists.

“We don’t have the kind of forces in the community that we had before,” Paterson told Louis last week. “In other words, our black media outlets, save your program and a few others, are the only ways that we have access. And even our reporters from our own community buy the public line, which is ‘we’re going to get rid of David Paterson.’”

The reporter singled out by the governor last week, Dominic Carter of NY1, said that criticism was tantamount to being called an “Uncle Tom.” Carter has publicly asked for an apology.

Judging from Paterson’s comments today, it’s not likely to come.

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