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Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Old 01-11-10, 08:42 AM
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Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100111/.../us_obama_reid

WASHINGTON – A double standard? Republicans seeking Sen. Harry Reid's resignation as majority leader over racial remarks he made about Barack Obama say yes — that Reid should be held to the same standard as former GOP Sen. Trent Lott, whose own racial gaffes cost him the Senate leadership in 2002.

Democrats say no, that Reid's comments — while unfortunate — were nothing like Lott's.

Reid apologized to Obama and a handful of black political leaders after a new book reported that he was favorably impressed by Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign and, in a private conversation, described the Illinois senator as a "light-skinned" African-American "with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one."

Obama, who tries to steer clear of the political thicket of race and politics, accepted the apology and said he wanted to close the book on the episode. Republicans were eager to keep it open Sunday, comparing Reid's remarks to those that cost Trent Lott the Senate leadership in 2002 and questioning why there was different reaction now.

Lott had cheered the 1948 presidential campaign of Strom Thurmond — a segregationist Democrat opposing President Harry Truman — during a 100th birthday tribute to Thurmond, by then a longtime Republican senator.

Lott, R-Miss., eventually apologized but resigned nearly two weeks later after a growing number of Republicans questioned his effectiveness, especially after he told Black Entertainment Television he supported affirmative action, no longer opposed the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, and would back programs aimed at minorities. He resigned from the Senate in 2007.

In Reid's case, at least so far, Democrats have been content to chide the Nevada Democrat and cast his remarks as inappropriate and, as Obama said, "unfortunate."

"There is this standard where the Democrats feel that they can say these things and they can apologize when it comes from the mouths of their own," Republican Party Chairman Michael Steele, who is black, said Sunday. "But if it comes from anyone else, it's racism."

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, the chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said in a statement that Reid should step down, calling his comments "embarrassing and racially insensitive."

"It's difficult to see this situation as anything other than a clear double standard on the part of Senate Democrats and others," Cornyn said.

Former Rep. Harold Ford, an African-American who is chairman of the Democratic Leadership Council, called Reid's remarks "an unusual set of words."

But in an interview Monday on NBC's "Today" show, Ford said "I don't believe in any way Harry Reid had any racial animus. I think there's an important distinction between he and Trent Lott."

Ford, who is considering challenging Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., in his party's primary this year, also said he thinks no Democrats have called for Reid's ouster because "I think he has a (civil rights) record you can point to."

For his part, Reid has no intention of stepping down as majority leader and is "absolutely running for reelection," his spokesman, Jim Manley, said.

"The Republicans are saying this because they know they can't beat Harry Reid," Manley said in an e-mail. "The only way to get him is to try to push him out. Sen. Reid stands by the president and will continue his life's work to improve people's lives."

Democratic Sen. Jack Reed of Rhode Island rejected comparisons to the Lott episode.

"I think that's a totally different context. Harry Reid made a misstatement," Reed said. "He owned up to it. He apologized. I think he is mortified by the statement he's made. And I don't think he should step down."

Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, released a statement saying, "Senator Reid's record provides a stark contrast to actions of Republicans to block legislation that would benefit poor and minority communities — most recently reflected in Republican opposition to the health bill now under consideration."

In their book "Game Change," Time magazine's Mark Halperin and New York magazine's John Heilemann report that Reid "was wowed by Obama's oratorical gifts and believed that the country was ready to embrace a black presidential candidate, especially one such as Obama — a 'light-skinned' African American 'with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one,' as he later put it privately."

Steele appeared on "Fox News Sunday" and NBC's "Meet the Press." Reed spoke on the Fox program.
_____________

1. There is a double standard.

2. There's a difference in what Lott said & what Reid said.

At least I wish the media would get what Lott said correctly & the context in which it was said.

Last edited by classicman2; 01-11-10 at 08:44 AM.
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Old 01-11-10, 08:49 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

What people aren't focusing on is whether Reid's comments were true.
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Old 01-11-10, 09:09 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

I thought a more interesting part of the book was about Hillary Clinton & Obama. Obama clearly wanted her to be his Sec. of State. Clinton responded with 'there may be a problem with my husband.'
What's new?
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Old 01-11-10, 09:14 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Reid was just saying what many people were thinking...but should never say. What a moron.
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Old 01-11-10, 09:21 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Dangit, Classicman...I had just copied the initial yahoo news stories & come here to paste it in a new thread entitled, 'Let's Hear It For the Light-Skinned Man in the White House". However, you beat me to the punch.

I just posted a short while ago my reaction to last night's 60 Minutes segment supposedly focusing on the "Game Change" book to be published today & the fact that Reid's comments were not mentioned even ONCE during the segment even though it is the most damaging revelation from the book (considering Reid's current position of prominence both in the Senate & the Health Care Debate).

I just wonder if anyone thinks the remarks would have been ignored by 60 Minutes if they had been uttered by Palin, McCain, or any other GOP figure.

(Personally, I don't think they reveal any racism in Reid, who seems to be an expert in racial affairs judging from his recent comments comparing the GOP's position on health care to slavery. I think he was just acknowledging political realities & perceptions regarding Obama's electability. If anything, it simply recognizes that racism does affect voting choices, even among "progressive" voters. However, speaking the truth regarding any "third rail" issue such as racial politics can be a deal-breaker).
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Old 01-11-10, 09:26 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post
I thought a more interesting part of the book was about Hillary Clinton & Obama. Obama clearly wanted her to be his Sec. of State. Clinton responded with 'there may be a problem with my husband.'
That's not news though.

Reid should probably step down.
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Old 01-11-10, 09:29 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Wow, I actually agree with classicman2


Stupid comment but it doesn't mean much and shouldn't cost him his job...just like other people's comments shouldn't have cost them their job.
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Old 01-11-10, 10:23 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Certainly racism is a bad thing, and the ideology of a person being superior or inferior based on the color of their skin is odious. But that being said, the issue of racism has been elevated to bizarre, disproportionate status in our modern society. It seems we're getting to the point where being convicted of violent assault or murder would carry less stigma than being branded a racist. It seems analogous to being called a witch in colonial Salem, or denounced as a "rightist" in Mao's China---and as in those examples, a lot of times the moral outrage at the supposed offense is feigned, and is merely a pretext for pursuing personal or political grudges.
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Old 01-11-10, 10:39 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

"Negro dialect"? Couldn't he at least called it "jive"?
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Old 01-11-10, 10:49 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by Ky-Fi View Post
Certainly racism is a bad thing, and the ideology of a person being superior or inferior based on the color of their skin is odious. But that being said, the issue of racism has been elevated to bizarre, disproportionate status in our modern society. It seems we're getting to the point where being convicted of violent assault or murder would carry less stigma than being branded a racist. It seems analogous to being called a witch in colonial Salem, or denounced as a "rightist" in Mao's China---and as in those examples, a lot of times the moral outrage at the supposed offense is feigned, and is merely a pretext for pursuing personal or political grudges.
I've been saying this for years now. In fact the whole "racist" term doesn't even mean anything anymore because it's such a contrived status. Anyone can call anyone racist and it doesn't mean they are at all so at this point who even really cares anymore? I think Reid said was right and I think middle-eastern men are more likely than others to try to blow up airplanes. So label me a racist and let's both go on our way..

Of course Republicans are going to try to make political hay of this.. if it were on the other side you can bet Democrats would be demanding the same thing. Gotta get rid of your opponents somehow (Although Reid is probably about to be voted out anyhow).
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Old 01-11-10, 10:57 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

What he said was right. If Obama sounded like Lil Wayne, he wouldn't have gotten elected. Calling it "negro dialect", however, is kinda insinuating that most, or many, blacks can't speak properly, so I can see how it could be considered offensive to them. As such, they should admit to being offended, not brush it under the rug.
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Old 01-11-10, 11:22 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Would Reid have gotten chosen as Majority Leader if he spoke Mormon Dialect?

"Oh my heck! This bill is sadly lacking, it's like a flippin' bowl of green jello with no fruit pieces inside!"
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Old 01-11-10, 11:23 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by Groucho View Post
Would Reid have gotten chosen as Majority Leader if he spoke Mormon Dialect?

"Oh my heck! This bill is sadly lacking, it's like a flippin' bowl of green jello with no fruit pieces inside!"
I find that statement offensive.
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Old 01-11-10, 11:44 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Negro dialect

Democrats don't care about racism nearly as much as they care about the race card.
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Old 01-11-10, 11:49 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by kvrdave View Post
Democrats don't care about racism nearly as much as they care about the race card.
<i>Mod note: Please refrain from party bashing/generalizations. Thank you. </i>
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Old 01-11-10, 11:49 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by wendersfan View Post
That's not news though.

Reid should probably step down.
I thought Reid should have stepped down for ineptness. Now, he's doing a little bettter.
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Old 01-11-10, 11:53 AM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post
I thought Reid should have stepped down for ineptness. Now, he's doing a little bettter.
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Old 01-11-10, 12:30 PM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

I believe there are some Democrats who care less about racism than they do being able to play the race card.

It's like I got smacked down on Jeopardy for not phrasing it as a question.


I sure don't want Reid to resign. I so wonder how this will affect his election. The DNC might get niggardly with how much help they offer him.
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Old 01-11-10, 12:36 PM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by kvrdave View Post
I believe there are some Democrats who care less about racism than they do being able to play the race card.
Probably some Republicans too. In fact, those calling for his resignation probably just want to highlight the double standard, not have him actually resign. An ept majority leader could be dangerous.
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Old 01-11-10, 12:46 PM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

If the Democrats were smart, they'd pick someone to condemn Reid's statements. Someone white, liberal, and not Lieberman. This person wouldn't have to call on Reid to resign his leadership slot, but get right up next to that.
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Old 01-11-10, 12:48 PM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Is it really a double standard? If you look at the totallity of Senator Reid's career and the totallity of Senator Lott's career, you'll see two different pictures of the way these people have dealt with racial issues. No surprise that in the wake of two insensitive comments (which were, as classicman noted, very different comments), the two men are being treated differently.
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Old 01-11-10, 12:53 PM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by wendersfan View Post
If the Democrats were smart, they'd pick someone to condemn Reid's statements. Someone white, liberal, and not Lieberman. This person wouldn't have to call on Reid to resign his leadership slot, but get right up next to that.
Could not disagree more. Those on the left see this as shameless Republican opportunism and don't need to see one of their own abetting it; those on the right will only take it as further support for the idea that Reid should resign if Russ Feingold or Blanche Lincoln or whoever holds a press conference; and those in the middle -- to the extent they care about Mark Halperin's gossip-mongering (most of them don't) -- feel that Reid's apology and Obama's acceptance of it put the matter to rest and don't need to see some back-bencher weigh in for his fifteen minutes in the spotlight.
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Old 01-11-10, 01:00 PM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by JasonF View Post
Is it really a double standard? If you look at the totallity of Senator Reid's career and the totallity of Senator Lott's career, you'll see two different pictures of the way these people have dealt with racial issues. No surprise that in the wake of two insensitive comments (which were, as classicman noted, very different comments), the two men are being treated differently.
There is a double standard. Lott isn't a good example of it though
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Old 01-11-10, 01:06 PM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

I certainly don't want Reid to step down from his position. It's much more fun watching people like him get defeated by their constituents.

Maybe after enough of that they'll remember where they came from and who they represent. You can say a lot about her, but at least Pelosi hasn't forgotten that.
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Old 01-11-10, 01:18 PM
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Re: Republicans Calling for Reid to Resign

Originally Posted by JasonF View Post
Is it really a double standard? If you look at the totallity of Senator Reid's career and the totallity of Senator Lott's career, you'll see two different pictures of the way these people have dealt with racial issues.
Will you see a difference in the results? I know results don't mean as much as white guilt intentions, but I was just curious.
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