Nashville Post Politics: I Detect Some Sarcasm

Nashville Post Politics

I Detect Some Sarcasm

P.J. Tobia missed the 22nd Annual White Christian Heritage Festival in Pulaski, Tennessee and he’s wicked upset about it:

It is so important to remember white heritage. We just don’t get to do that enough in a country where the vast majority of people are white, most holidays were started by white Christians, almost everybody on TV or radio is white and our government is, for the most part, composed of white guys.

It’s great that these fine people are taking the time to pause and think of our glorious white past in this age where white people still run pretty much everything.

Politico: Club segregation enters N.C. race


Club segregation enters N.C. race

The husband of North Carolina Democratic Senate hopeful Kay Hagan is a lifelong member of an exclusive country club that didn’t admit its first black member until 1995, Hagan’s campaign disclosed Tuesday. 

Charles “Chip” Hagan III, a businessman and former Democratic county leader, “supported opening up membership” at the 1,000-member Greensboro Country Club — but remained a member for years despite his opposition to the club’s de facto segregation policy, Hagan spokeswoman Colleen Flanagan told Politico. 

Kay Hagan, who is counting on strong support among North Carolina’s black Democrats to unseat Republican incumbent Elizabeth Dole, has never been a member of the club herself, Flanagan added. 

“Chip supported broadening the membership to include African Americans and others,” she said. “Though it took longer than it should have, Greensboro County Club fully desegregated in 1995 and remains so today.

The vast majority of black leaders in the North Carolina back Hagan, who pushed through a $1.5 million state grant for an international civil rights museum in the state senate and recently voted for a bill banning cross burning and the display of nooses. 

Greensboro was one of the last all-white clubs in the area to integrate. In the mid-1990s, members claimed they had never received an application from a black person, even though African Americans make up about 35 percent of the local population — and the city was site to groundbreaking civil rights demonstrations in the 1960s. 

The first black member to be sponsored was Robert J. Brown, a former aide to Richard to Nixon, according to press accounts at the time. 

Flanagan said Chip Hagan “has been a member his whole life” and inherited the membership from his father, a well-to-do former Marine Corps general and local attorney. She maintained that the candidate herself isn’t a member, despite a recent Raleigh News & Observer report that “the family belongs to the Greensboro Country Club.” 

John Randall, spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, which has bankrolled anti-Hagan ads, demanded to know why the Democrat didn’t demand her husband leave the club, which is located near the family’s house. 

OpenLeft: Race Boating: Swift Boat Backer Funds Racist Mail


Race Boating: Swift Boat Backer Funds Racist Mail

Swift Boat funder Robert Perry, a top national Republican donor, is funding overtly racist attack mail this cycle. It’s not Swift Boating. It’s Race Boating.

This is happening in the Houston area, down the road from Tom DeLay. George Bush’s hometown. While an African-American, Barack Obama, is the Democratic nominee for president.

Today’s Race Boaters aren’t like the Swift Boaters. They ARE the Swift Boaters. Bob Perry. Tom DeLay. Tom Craddick. The same people whose 2002 campaign funding scheme led toTuesday’s guilty plea from the Texas Association of Business, another organization with close ties to the Race Boaters. That plea came from the same investigation that led to the indictment against DeLay.


A group called “Empower Texans,” chaired by Tim Dunn of Midland, an associate of Republican Texas House Speaker Tom Craddick, attacked Democratic state House candidate Joel Redmond of Pasadena with a direct mail piece featuring fuzzy images of black and Hispanic lawmakers (plus Barack Obama), several black birds resembling crows, and a picture of the white Redmund. The tag line:  “Birds of a feather flock together.”

Anyone with any racial sensitivity gets the meaning of the mailer:  Redmond has betrayed whites by befriending people of color. He can’t be trusted.


WSJ: Republicans Fuel Rumor That Obama Is Muslim


Republicans Fuel Rumor That Obama Is Muslim

One of the most striking parts of Colin Powell’s endorsement of Barack Obama was his accusation that Republicans have helped spread the rumor that Sen. Obama is Muslim, and turned the word into a smear. “I have heard senior members of my own party drop the suggestion he’s Muslim and he might be associated with terrorists,” he said.

Some Republicans took umbrage at the comment, saying John McCain and Republicans haven’t directly made such an accusation. Jonah Goldberg, a writer for The National Review, said it was a “low and dishonest blow,” and asked: “Is there really much evidence that the GOP or the McCain campaign have had anything to do with the stories that Obama is a Muslim?”

It’s an important question, worth a detailed look.

First, Gen. Powell noted that Sen. McCain himself has never intimated that Sen. Obama is Muslim. And he’s right about that. Neither McCain nor his running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin have suggested such a thing, or even referred to their opponent by his full name, Barack Hussein Obama. At one point, the campaign fired a volunteer who had told voters that Sen. Obama is Muslim, and a recent video showedrank-and-file McCain supporters chastising an anti-Muslim McCainian.

Stoking the Rumor

Hillary Clinton arguably stoked the rumor more directly than McCain when she said during the primary that Sen. Obama wasn’t Muslim “as far as I know.”

What about the Republican Party itself? There’s no evidence that the national Republican Party has driven, coordinated or even overtly encouraged the Obama-is-a-Muslim line.

Yet the idea has been widely embraced, and not just by a few conservative extremists. A recent Pew Research Center poll found that a staggering 16% of McCain supporters believe Sen. Obama is Muslim – and only 47% of Republicans say he’s Christian (the balance is unsure).

There are some instances of Republican Party officials stoking the idea. The Tennessee Republican Partyissued a press release about “Barack Hussein Obama” that included a picture of Sen. Obama in “Muslim garb.” The Clark County, Washington, Republican Party declared on its Web site that “Barack Hussein Obama has joined the United Church of Christ in an attempt to downplay his Muslim background. It is reported that Obama swore his oath of office using the Koran….This is chilling information about a candidate for the highest office in the Country especially given the radical Muslim claims that they will destroy American from the inside.”

The Web site of the National Black Republican Association featured an article analyzing “Obama’s Muslim Connections,” which declared, “It’s important to scrutinize Obama’s Muslim background to determine if his Islamic past influences his decisions and actions toward America, including his decision to select an anti-American pastor as his spiritual adviser.”

Marcia Stirman, chairman of Otero County Republican Women in New Mexico, said of Obama in a letter to the local newspaper: “He’s a Muslim socialist.”

Democratic Strategist: The “He’s a Muslim” Rap Persists

Democratic Strategist

The “He’s a Muslim” Rap Persists

Beliefnet’s Steve Waldman drew attention today to a finding in the new Pew poll that I missed: the persistent belief of many voters that Barack Obama is a Muslim.

Currently 55% of registered voters correctly identify Obama as a Christian, while 12% say he’s a Muslim, and the rest are unsure. These numbers have been remarkably stable since June. Among voters who say they support John McCain, only 47% say Obama’s a Christian, while 16% say he’s a Muslim (down from 19% last month).

In defense of Colin Powell’s claim that Republicans bear significant responsibility for the Obama-the-Muslim myth, Waldman provides a good compilation of evidence from conservative journals and Republican operatives who have sought to fan the flames by alluding to an Obama-Muslim connection.

But in the end, maybe it doesn’t matter that much. Far and away, the age demographic with the highest levels of confusion over Obama’s religious identity (45% Christian, 19% Muslim) is under-30 voters, his strongest generational group. And 8% of Obama supporters think he’s a Muslim, but don’t care, as well they shouldn’t.

Detroit Free Press: Shameless anti-stem cell ad

Detroit Free Press

Shameless anti-stem cell ad

But opponents to Proposal 2, the Nov. 4 ballot initiative that would legalize embryonic stem cell research in Michigan, may have set new standards for shameless fear-mongering

An ad titled “In the Name of Good,” (See it here.) which began running today, compares the research that Prop 2 would allow to the human experimentation horrors at Tuskegee University. Using an actor whose voice “sounds” black, the commercial says (quite falsely) that stem cell research won’t be regulated, and implies that it could therefore lead to abuses similar to the Tuskegee experiments, in which hundreds of African-American men were purposely infected with syphillis by researchers.

The point is clear: to frighten minority communities into voting against Prop 2 by drawing a false connection with past abuse. 

It’s far past shameless, and well into reckless and even pernicious campaigning. 

Think Progress: Right-Wing Ad Tries To Frighten Minorities By Comparing Embryonic Stem Cell Research To Tuskegee Study

Think Progress

Right-Wing Ad Tries To Frighten Minorities By Comparing Embryonic Stem CellResearch To Tuskegee Study

Up for consideration in Michigan is Proposal 2, a measure to permit embryonic stem cell research. As the NIH has outlined, embryonic stem cells offer the most promise for medical breakthroughs

Right-wing opponents of the measure have resorted to desperate, “shameless” fear-mongering. A new ad compares embryonic stem cell research to the Tuskegee study, which the Detroit Free Press calls “horribly offensive, race-baiting.” Watch the ad: