Thing is, there is a subtle difference between believing or knowing something, and saying it in public.
When have a date, and you tell your girl "You know, I normally don't date fat chicks", you will get a rather predictable reaction. It does not matter at all whether she's maybe really obese (or whether you only have a perverted sense of humor). The perceived message is the same, and the reaction will be the same. And no, you won't be able to explain that you meant something different, no matter how hard you try :-)
Any such thing remotely close to "Everybody sucks, except me and 3 other people on the planet" conveys a similar message, no matter how much you follow up explaining that you meant to say something completely different and that you were unfairly quoted out of context.
You just can't say such a thing without getting a negative reaction, even if it is the truth (or if you think it's the truth).
I don't believe in crowd funding, so I didn't/wouldn't pledge anyway (plus, I didn't buy the whole "buy being a developer" thing), but sure enough if I had put my money into that, I would revoke it because of that statement, as it is mutually exclusive with the "we value your input" claim, which makes the entire project come over as somewhat hypocritical (in my opinion, yours may of course differ).
But yes, you're right that it will likely only increase traffic ("the only bad publicity is no publicity").
And even assuming a considerable number of people drops off now, it wouldn't make a real difference. It is not impossible (and not really illegal) to pledge for your own project. So if you have a 1M goal and you drop short at 800k two hours before close date, the math is easy: put in another 200k to get 1M (minus the 5% provision) out. Net gain 750k.