Braun Apologizes For Calling Rival A Crack Addict

CHICAGO (CBS) — Mayoral candidate Carol Moseley Braun offered a public apology Wednesday to a rival candidate she accused of being a crack addict.

Patricia Van Pelt-Watkins, a little known candidate in the race for mayor, had demanded an apology from Braun on Monday, but said she didn’t expect to hear one.

“Patricia Watkins said she does not expect an apology from me. She is wrong,” Braun said at a Tuesday afternoon press conference. “I want to apologize to her … and to all of the families and friends of those who are or have been caught up in the tragedy of drug use.”

The controversy began Sunday, during a candidate forum at Trinity United Church of Christ, when Van Pelt-Watkins accused Braun of being “missing in action” on community issues in Chicago ever since she lost her U.S. Senate seat in 1998.

Braun shot back that Van Pelt-Watkins didn’t know what Braun had been doing after that because she was “strung out on crack.”

Braun declined to say if she’d contacted Van Pelt-Watkins personally. She also apologized to Trinity United Church of Christ and New Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church, which organized Sunday’s community forum.

“I meant no disrespect of the sanctuaries in which campaign tensions spilled over, nor to the pastors of those churches, nor to the people for whom these safe havens of hope are so important,” Braun said. “I regret any intemperance in remarks made there.”

Van Pelt-Watkins, a community activist, has admitted past drug use. But she says she hasn’t touched a drug, an alcoholic drink or a cigarette in 32 years and that she never used crack.

Braun noted she has lost a brother to drug abuse.

“I promise to do all I can to rid our communities of the scourge of drugs and the violence and despair they bring,” Braun said.

  • justin

    What a nice backhanded apology. Braun has not one redeeming quality.

  • TOM


  • Lyn

    A little to late… Carol you was wrong…you don’t blow your temper on mindless things, yes she may have had issues longtime ago, but you did also. As I have learned never look back at the past because if you can’t get past that how do you plan on looking forward to the future.. I’m a Chicagoan but I live in the south suburbs and if I did have to vote in Chicago you would not receive my vote just because of the way you blew up & lauded your oppenent…

  • franklin808

    It certainly will be entertaining if she wins the election.

  • nappyheaded1

    the two should share a tote on the bong and be friends

  • nappyheaded1

    LYN are you a product of CPS?

  • marv

    Braun, the thief has no room to criticizd .

    She is looking for more trips for she and her familly on taxpayer money.

    What a tragedy for Chicago if she is elected.

  • retiredinAznow1

    She will never be elected……neither of them will be elected….too dumb to run a city!

  • cosmo

    Sounded like some common street altercation. Braun can forget it, like she stood a chance anyway. What a waste of time, money and energy. Neither of them represent me.


    Maybe she was under to much pressure. Gee, what would she be like being Mayor?

  • South Side

    Carol should be more careful. Even the President admits to past coke use!

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