There is No Racism in the Republican Party (a Continuing Series).

Over the past week, there have been at least two glorious instances of hilariously racist rhetoric.

Last week, Arizona Rep. Trent Franks suggested that African-Americans were better off under slavery, given the abortion rate in black communities. Shani deals with the problems inherent in that argument in her piece for the American Prospect. I’ll just leave you with the quote:

FRANK: In this country, we had slavery for God knows how long. And now we look back on it and we say “How brave were they? What was the matter with them? You know, I can’t believe, you know, four million slaves. This is incredible.” And we’re right, we’re right. We should look back on that with criticism. It is a crushing mark on America’s soul. And yet today, half of all black children are aborted. Half of all black children are aborted. Far more of the African American community is being devastated by the policies of today than were being devastated by policies of slavery. And I think, What does it take to get us to wake up?

And today’s example of the racism-that-doesn’t-exist-in-the-conservative-movement comes by way of Lawrence Verga, one of Rep. Tom Perriello’s potential challengers in Virginia’s 5th District:

Verga said the biggest threat is the Americans who voted the Obama administration into office. “That was political correctness gone awry,” Verga said.

This actually puts Verga in a proud tradition of 5th District conservatives that say outrageously racist things. See former Rep. Virgil Goode’s thoughts on Keith Ellison’s 2006 election in Minnesota:

The Muslim Representative from Minnesota was elected by the voters of that district and if American citizens don’t wake up and adopt the Virgil Goode position on immigration there will likely be many more Muslims elected to office…

Stay tuned for more. And I assure you, there will be more.


Jamelle Bouie is a writer for Slate. He has also written for The Daily Beast, The American Prospect and The Nation. His work centers on politics, race, and the intersection of the two.

You can find him on Twitter, Flickr, and Instagram as jbouie.
  • The Republicans have painted themselves into a corner where calling out stupid racist bullshit would put them in the “politically correct” corner they’ve spent the last 20 years demonizing and lambasting. Which is fine. It’s their party; they can run it into the ground if they want.

  • Of course. No one is ever racist. Ever.

    That said, you’d like to think shifting demographics will eventually mean an end to this sort of rhetoric in polite company. At some point, you’ve gotta think a member of a major political party will have to pay a price for this sort of stuff. If not the party itself.

    • i think they are. they did really poorly among nonwhites across the board in 2008; i can’t imagine how they expect that to change, what with their thinly veiled racism on immigration.

    • here’s some pushback:

      “Muslim constituents repeatedly challenged Rep. Sue Myrick (R-NC) at an emotional town hall meeting in Charlotte Thursday, with Myrick scrambling to distance herself from the Islam-bashing co-author of the book Muslim Mafia, whose foreword was written by the congresswoman herself.

      Myrick has had a tense relationship with her district’s Muslim community for many years, but it’s been aggravated recently by her campaign to investigate undercover Muslim intern “spies” on Capitol Hill.

      That effort arose from supposed revelations in Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld that’s Conspiring to Islamize America, written by Paul Sperry and David Gaubatz, with a foreword by Myrick.

      But when confronted by some of Gaubatz’s past inflammatory statements — particularly that Islam is a “terminal disease that once spread is hard to destroy” — Myrick said she did not agree, later claiming that he did not even write the book that bears his name.

      “The book was written by Paul Sperry, who is very well respected journalist,” Myrick told one questioner. “Gaubatz did the investigating for it. And, quite frankly, Gaubatz didn’t write a word of the book. And in that sense, it’s kind of a shame his name is on the book because he didn’t write it.”

      (For the record, Sperry is a WorldNeyDaily contributor who once called on America to “force-feed Taliban clerics pork rinds until they give up [Osama bin Laden’s] location.”

      The book’s cover bears the names of both Gaubatz and Sperry.

      And in her own foreword to Muslim Mafia, Myrick wrote: “Former federal investigator and co-author P. David Gaubatz, meanwhile, is a great American who deserves all our gratitude for his heroic service to our country.”

      Gaubatz last year called for a “professional and legal backlash” against Muslims in the wake of the Fort Hood shootings, a remark that Myrick declined to denounce at the time.”

  • Regardless of your political stance you should always try to appreciate the humor and message of political joke