MSNBC analyst Touré, who is a 9/11 truther, appeared on the News Nation show to denounce Rick Perry as a birther. Speaking of the Republican presidential candidate, he slammed, "...I see Trump and the other birthers, Perry, virtually going to the White House and knocking on the door saying can we see your documentation to make sure you are actually an American?"
It's odd that MSNBC would bring on Touré, who believes in a fringe conspiracy theory, to assert that Perry believes in a fringe conspiracy theory. Talking to host Tamron Hall, the analyst wondered why people would believe such weird ideas: "Why are we even wondering, at this point, is Obama really an American?"
On Twitter, however, Touré has engaged in paranoid conspiracies linking the September 11th attacks and the U.S. government:
Van Jones was forced to resign partly bc questions the truth of 9/11 but that Pentagon attack is really fishy... [Link to tweet]
How could a plane crash into the Pentagon? And not appear on video cameras?? And leave little wreckage??? #Don'tbuyitfiremenow. [Link to tweet]
On August 26, 2011, MSNBC featured Touré to blame Hurricane Irene on global warming. Perhaps the liberal cable network should be a little more careful before having analysts on to talk about strange theories.
A transcript of the October 28, 2011 segment, which aired at 2:39pm EDT, follows:
RICK PERRY: I don't consider making fun of something being a mistake. I mean, Donald Trump and I were having dinner. I mean, look, the President is the president. That's a fact. So, the issue of whether or not- I don't think Americans see that as anything other than a distraction.
TAMRON HALL: MSNBC contributor, who is already now rolling his eyes, Touré joins me now. Not impressed with this latest comment?
TOURE: Now it's a distraction. Look, all you need to do is put the suggestion out and people hear the associations. Why are we even wondering, at this point, is Obama really an American? As if they didn't have to prove it to become a senator? As if he didn't have to prove it to get in the presidential race to get in the White House. And now he has already proven it to Donald Trump which was a major, sort of, disappointment moment for a lot of us. But, now, you are bringing it up again and all you are saying is "He's not really one of us. Is he a real American? I don't know." What does that mean? He's black. It's a coded, subtle, nuanced way for a white man to say he's not really one of us. He's black.
HALL: In your article you compare it to when free slaves have to show your papers. And this came down to some in white America saying show me your papers.
TOURE: I mean, I see Trump and the other birthers, Perry, virtually going to the White House and knocking on the door saying can we see your documentation to make sure you are actually an American? I mean, how disgusting is that? And, for, to ask Obama to show him, prove to me that you are an American while you are the President is not only disrespectful, it has nothing to do with the business of running the country. But, it's totally that free paper check we had to deal with during slavery. It's totally that thing we had to deal with where you buy a first class seat and they want to see your ticket, again, just to make sure you are in the right place, you know, when you're driving a nice-
HALL: That are you belong here.
TOURE: Yeah. You are driving a nice car. Police want to check. Is this really your car and are you supposed to be in this neighborhood? We're not sure about you because the color of your skin raises questions about your integrity, about your character, about your value as a human being.
HALL: Now, Chris Cillizza wrote the same thing. Why is Perry flirting with birtherism? And he wrote in his article that he feels this is Perry trying to show the Tea Party thate he is tough. They are looking for someone willing to take on Obama. And Chris Cillizza wrote, "The birther issue is almost, oddly, beside the point. The idea of simply trying to get under Obama's skin is what matters." He doesn't say this this is coded language for racism. He said this is Perry trying to show those who would follow him. I can get him. You know, I can stick it to him."
TOURE: Sure. Sure. It definitely sends the message to the Tea Partiers and to, sort of, the hard core conservatives that, "Yeah. I'm going to take it to him. I'm going to be tough. I'm going to be rough. I'm going to be the guy that Romney is not," who is very cool, right? He's sort of talk show host, right?
HALL: But, you take it a step further and say that this is, though, coded language for racism?
TOURE: It's absolutely racist, without question It suggests that he is other. It indexes white as truly American. And he is not one of us. And it just takes coded language for everybody to get the message that he is not one of us. The whole Muslim flirtation that other people engaged in is the same thing. He is not one of us. He is not a normative American. Why are we saying this about him? We didn't have these questions about Clinton, Bush, Bush, Reagan, etc. We just wonder suddenly about Obama. "Is he really an American? Mmm, I don't know." It's because he's black. "It's a coded way of saying he's black, don't vote for him."