Monday, March 22, 2010

Was I wrong? I dunno...

Yesterday I said that Republicans didn't dare call out the racists in the Tea Party, because without the racists they lose.

Well, it turns out that the Republican leadership was denouncing those racists after all... or were they?

House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, called the incidents "reprehensible" but said on NBC's Meet the Press "let's not let a few isolated incidents get in the way of the fact that millions of Americans are scared to
death, and millions of Americans want no part of this growing size of government."

. . .

"Nobody condones that at all," said House Minority Whip Eric Cantor, R- Virginia. on ABC's "This Week." "There were 30,000 people here in Washington yesterday. And, yes, there were some very awful things said."

. . .

On CNN's "State of the Union," Rep. Mike Pence, R-Indiana, called the slurs "contemptible," saying, "I denounce it in the strongest terms."

. . .

As demonstrators gathered outside the Capitol Sunday to rally against the bill, one held a sign saying, "All tea partiers: If you hear a racial slur, step away, point, boo and take a picture of the rat bastard."

This is nice of CNN to report, but look at what I've bolded above. The leadership did not go in front of the tea partiers and denounce racism. They went on television news programs- none of which the teabaggers watch or trust, since the only news source they believe is Fox News.

And the only direct rejection of racism addressed to teabaggers was by... a sole, anonymous teabagger.

This is standard Republican tactics: say one thing in front of the loyal, another in front of the media, and ignore those who point out that the two contradict one another.

If someone knows of an elected Republican calling out racists in the teabagger protests on Fox News, or denouncing it at an actual teabagger rally, please let me know. Until then, I decline to retract my position: Republicans are too dependent upon racists and bigots within their party and within the teabagger movement to denounce them to their faces.

EDIT: A political cartoonist who was on the ground Saturday reports that the incidents were not as "isolated" as Boehner would have us believe...

... and a blogger, without attribution or details, reports a Republican congresswoman from Missouri as encouraging Tea Party racism. Don't know about this one, but maybe more will come out.

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