Monday, July 06, 2009

Colin Powell: The GOP Still Has a Problem With Racism.

Colin Powell has stated that the Republican party still has an issue with race, something which he hints has been in evidence during the discussion about Sotomayer's confirmation.

KING: We are about to have a Supreme Court nomination confirmation hearing, and it is clear now from all involved that we're going to have a spirited conversation about affirmative action. It is an issue that you have discussed many times over the course of your life.

Any advice for the senators in both parties as this goes forward? Let me ask you first if you know Judge Sotomayor?

POWELL: No, I do not.

KING: She's from the Bronx.


POWELL: She's from my neighborhood, yes. She seems like a very gifted and accomplished woman. She certainly has an open and liberal bent of mind, but that's not disqualifying. But she seems to have a judicial record that seems to be balanced and tries to follow the law.

And so I hope we do have a spirited set of hearings. And Supreme Court confirmation hearings tend to always meet that standard. And she ought to be asked about everything from both the left and the right. What we can't continue to have is to have somebody like a Judge Sotomayor who is announced, and based on one simple tricky but nonetheless case at the Supreme Court has now decided, have her called a racist, a reverse-racist, and she ought to withdraw her nomination because we're mad at her.

He then talks about the issue relating to the Republican party in general:

KING: You wrote in your book some time ago about this issue, about serving in administrations. You wrote: "Never in the two years I worked with Ronald Reagan and George Bush did I detect the slightest trace of racial prejudice in their behavior. They led a party, however, whose principal message to black Americans seemed to be, lift yourself up by your bootstraps. Some did not have boots. I wish that Reagan and Bush had shown more sensitivity on this point."

Let's fast forward to where we are today. Does the Republican Party have that sensitivity now? You just mentioned the divergence of opinion when this nomination first came up. Are you confident those in, let's say, elected leadership positions have that sensitivity now?

POWELL: Well, if you look at the results of the election last fall and make a judgment on the basis of how the party did with respect to the Hispanic vote and the African-American vote, realizing that President Obama -- candidate Obama had a significant advantage with those constituencies, we haven't done well enough.

And when you have non-elected officials such as we have in our party who immediately shout racism or somebody who is quite prominent in the media says that the only basis upon which I could possibly have supported Obama was because he was black and I was black, even though I laid out my judgment on the candidates, then we still have a problem.

If the Republican party were more like Colin Powell then they wouldn't have the problems which they have today. Unfortunately, the party currently looks as if it is the party of Rush Limbaugh and the other loons. Powell had this to say about Limbaugh:

KING: The guy who used the term "reverse-racism," you didn't name him, but it's Rush Limbaugh. And he has said some not so favorable things about you, saying this guy says he's a Republican but then he supported Obama, so he's not really a Republican.

You're a Republican.

POWELL: Yes. And Mr. Limbaugh, of course, is entitled to his opinion but he's not on any membership committee. He doesn't decide who I am or what I am no more than I decide who he is or what he is.

So we've had this running debate, let's call it that. And he's entitled to his opinion and I'm entitled to mine.

Powell is stating that Limbaugh doesn't get to say who is a Republican and who is not. However, sadly, at the moment - especially amongst the militant band of nutcases which represent the Republican base - Limbaugh does get to say who is in and who is out.

And sensible, thoughtful, Republicans like Powell no longer seem to be who the Republican party actually are.

Hat tip to Crooks and Liars.

No comments: