updated at 4:52 pm ET
Oh no. This doesn’t sound civil at all!
It looks like a top member of the Congressional Black Caucus – the group’s chief vote counter, no less – has declared that Tea Party members actually in their heart of hearts want to start lynching African Americans.
Let’s take a listen to what Rep. Andre Carson (D-Ind.), the nation’s second Muslim member of Congress, had to say.
A little presumptuous of the man, don’t you think?
What’s more, he’s not backing away from the comments. In an email to POLITICO, Carson’s spokesman instead suggested that destroying the lives of minorities is Tea Party policy:
The Tea Party is protecting its millionaire and oil company friends while gutting critical services that they know protect the livelihood of African-Americans, as well as Latinos and other disadvantaged minorities . . . We are talking about child nutrition, job creation, job training, housing assistance, and Head Start, and that is just the beginning. A child without basic nutrition, secure housing, and quality education has no real chance at a meaningful and productive life.
Carson was an early supporter of President Obama, the first member of the Indiana congressional delegation to back him.
As the nation’s first black president and as the self-appointed spokesman for political civility – when he’s not practicing incivility himself, calling Republicans enemies of Hispanics or saying Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget is un-American – Obama needs to smack this schmuck down proactively, not in response to some reporter’s question.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney should kick off his daily briefing this afternoon with a clear declaration that this is unacceptable.
Of course, this would not be the easy thing to do. Black leaders are increasingly vocal in their frustration with Obama, feeling he has done too little to create jobs for minorities and that he is ignoring their agenda. From a separate POLITICO article:
Prominent black leaders — fearing Obama is not only taking them for granted but avoiding them in public — have turned up the heat on the nation’s first African-American president, transforming all-in-the-family concerns into open criticism of the president . . .
The leaders are tired, they say, of Obama dog-whistling his support for a broad black agenda rather than explicitly embracing the kind of war on racism, poverty and economic segregation embodied by King.
And the president desperately needs to not piss off his African American base. Of course, he’ll get almost all of the black vote. But to win key states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, Florida – you name it – he needs to get that number as close to 100 percent as possible.
So let’s see what the White House says. I’ll update.
UPDATE: No statements from Carney, and no questions on this from the MSM.