There’s a new racket in town, and President Obama is running it.
After Sen. John McCain said on the morning of November 14 that UN Ambassador Susan Rice was not qualified to be Secretary of State because of her erroneous assertions that the Benghazi consulate attack was prompted by an anti-Muslim video, the discrimination police descended, unleashed by Obama himself.
The tactic was effective. Sunday, McCain backed down.
Spurred perhaps by the success of his presidential campaign’s efforts to smear Gov. Mitt Romney, Obama had launched a counteroffensive against McCain and other critics of Rice, suggesting the boys were picking on her because she’s a girl:
But when they go after the U.N. Ambassador, apparently because they think she’s an easy target, then they’ve got a problem with me. And should I choose, if I think that she would be the best person to serve America in the capacity of the State Department, then I will nominate her.
The comments, made during a press conference the afternoon of November 14, were paternalistic and patronizing. He would not have offerred such a defense for a male adviser.
Obama’s allies in the smear racket took the hint.
Two days later, a dozen female House members, most of them African American, charged McCain had revived the Republican war on women and that he’d added blacks to the list too.
“There is a clear sexism and racism that goes with these comments being made by unfortunately Sen. McCain and others,” said Rep. Marcia Fudge, the incoming chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus.
Last Tuesday, Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.), an African American who is the third ranking Democrat in the House, chimed in with the analysis that Republican usage of the word “incompetent” to describe Rice was a resort to racial “code words.”
By Sunday, McCain was off Rice’s case, saying she deserved a chance “to explain herself” and adding that “she’s not the problem.” Bowing to Obama’s original demand, McCain said Obama was “the problem.”
If McCain was indeed chased away from his position by a race baiting posse, it’s a sad new day in American politics.
Obama, who once sought the mantle of post-racial president, sowed the ground for this new politics by running a campaign laden with slurs against his opponent, including one by Vice President Biden, who said Romney wanted to put blacks “back in chains.”
Now that Obama put the campaign on the lowest road he could find, he appears set to place the government there too.