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Seven Days of GOP Bigotry | The Nation

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Katie Halper

Katie Halper

Breaking news, politics, culture and—not least—humor.

Seven Days of GOP Bigotry

These guys must be pooped! I don’t know how they do it. How do these GOP presidential candidates manage to pack so much racism into one week? They are prolific! You know who could learn a thing or two from Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich’s strong Catholic work ethic? The blacks! I mean the blahs.

Sunday: Rick Santorum tells supporters in Sioux City, Iowa, “I don’t want to make black people’s lives better, by giving them someone else’s money.”

Monday: Santorum does some amazing damage control, explaining,

I’ve seen that quote, I haven’t seen the context in which that was made…. Yesterday I talked for example about a movie called, um, what was it? Waiting for Superman, which was about black children and so I don’t know whether it was in response and I was talking about that.

Wednesday: Santorum realizes that he was totally misunderstood—apparently by himself as well as by others! Who said anything about black people? He said “blah” people. I’m not making this up. Watch the video (at 2:09) and hear him actually say [I] didn’t recall using that particular word… It was probably tongue-tied moment.… In fact, I’m pretty confident I didn’t say ‘black.’ I sort of started to say a word and sort of mumbled it and changed my thought. I don’t recall saying ‘black.’ No one in the audience heard me say that.”

Thursday: Not to be outdone, Newt Gingrich comes up with his own nugget of racist condescension, saying, “And so I’m prepared if the NAACP invites me, I’ll go to their convention and talk about why the African-American community should demand paychecks and not be satisfied with food stamps.”

Friday: Newt responds with the humility and sensitivity for which he is known.

I think you would have to be nuts to read those two paragraphs and conclude anything except that I was saying that every young American deserves the right to pursue happiness. Every young American deserves chance to have a job. Every neighborhood in America deserves a chance to have pay checks instead of food stamp.… And for the life of me I can’t understand why having a conservative Republican who cares about young people having jobs should be seen as such a terrible idea or should be seen as somehow a racist characterization.

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