Thursday, March 13, 2008
I'd call it a "fairy tale"
Worse yet, after what President Clinton said during the South Carolina primary, comparing the Obama and Jesse Jackson campaigns, a disturbing but only border line remark, after what some in the black community have perceived as a racial undertone to the 3:00 a.m. ad, a disturbing but only borderline interpretation, and after the moments hesitation in her own answer on “60 Minutes” about Obama‘s religion, a disturbing but only borderline vagueness—
Less than one second. That's how long it took Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton to answer, "Of course not," to Steve Kroft's question on 60 Minutes about whether she thought Sen. Barack Obama was a Muslim.
More on this tomorrow, and then a return to local matters -- I promise. However, I've noticed that the boys at MSNBC have taken to peddling the tale that Bill Clinton introduced race into election in South Carolina. First off, I'd argue that it was a knee-jerk reaction, that may or may not have been correct, to label Bill Clinton's statement about Jesse Jackson "race-baiting." However, it's selective amnesia to pretend that race was introduced into the election at that point. Had Obama supporters not already demonstrated an unscrupulous eagerness to accuse the Clinton campaign of race-baiting, the reaction to Bill Clinton's South Carolina statements wouldn't have been so predictable.
Though I think the last link (from the New Republic) overstates the case, I've got a feeling that it gives a glimpse of what we'll see in a viral email if Obama gets the nomination:
Meanwhile, the press generally ignored a report, confirmed by all involved, that Representative Jesse Jackson Jr., had warned one of Clinton's unshakable black supporters, Representative Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri, that he'd better line up behind Obama. Jackson, once again playing the role of the Obama campaign's "race man" enforcer, posed a leading question: "Do you want to go down in history as the one to prevent a black from winning the White House?" Black congressmen were threatened to fall or line or face primary challenges. "So you wake up without the carpet under your feet. You might find some young primary challenger placing you in a difficult position," Jackson said.
Actually, the TNR writer makes the matter sound far worse than the AP report cited, but I'd rather see it discussed now than in September.