Cokie Roberts: Romney Europe Trip Designed to Excite White People

While GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney was concluding his three-country tour with a stop in Poland on Monday, National Public Radio analyst Cokie Roberts was accusing the former Massachusetts governor of having a one-word reason for visiting that nation: race.

During the Monday morning edition of “Week in Politics,” host Linda Wertheimer asked Roberts, who is also a commentator for ABC News, what Romney had hoped to accomplish during his time in Poland.

The analyst replied that part of the visit “was a desire to portray President Obama as something of a wimp and say he has abandoned Eastern Europe.”

At that point, Roberts applied an unusual spin to the race card tactic by pointing to “the Reagan Democrats, those ethnic white voters who had been Democrats for many years, turned out for Ronald Reagan and have been fairly predictable Republicans since then.”

“Now, it’s a smaller percentage of the population, of the voting population than it used to be,” the NPR analyst continued, but “white voters are still much more Republican than any other group in the electorate.”

They went for McCain in 2008 by 55 percent, and I think that, you know, getting those ethnic voters excited is really what Romney has in mind here. It’s more for the folks at home, the descendants of the people that he will be speaking to in Poland.

However, the Republican candidate’s visit has usually been portrayed as having more context than a bid for Polish-American support. While in Poland, Romney stressed the alliance between that country and the U.S., which some people have considered an implicit dig at President Obama’s accommodating policies toward Russia.

Also, Romney used an address in Warsaw to herald Poland’s free-market policies that helped the country break from the doctrine of Communism, in turn promoting the economic policies he has made a centerpiece of his campaign.

Roberts’ comments drew fire from John Nolte of, who stated that, according to the NPR correspondent, “Romney didn’t go to Poland to gain some foreign policy experience or to prepare himself to be president or to help differentiate between his values and those of our current president.”

“No, it was all some dark, divisive, cynical, racial plan to suck up to us rural white bitter-clingers,” Nolte stated. “Yep, Romney went to Poland to blow a big racial dog-whistle.”

“This is pure McCarthyism on Roberts’ part,” he added. “Nothing more, nothing less.”

Nolte then defined McCarthyism as “ascribing the very worst motives to someone without a shred of evidence. The idea is disqualify, delegitimize, toxify, and attempt to silence this person by hurling a vicious accusation even though you have absolutely no proof to back it up.”

As we’ve seen for the last four years, when it comes to protecting Barack Obama, this is all the media does. No matter what it is, if it might in any way hurt Obama, the left-wing media screams racist.

For example, today we have the presumptive GOP nominee wrapping up a successful international trip that’s ended with a lot of positive media coverage, but … that might hurt Obama, so … RACISM!

Nolte added a final point regarding Roberts making hostile comments about Romney: “She’s doing so while disguised as an objective journalist and with our tax dollars.”

As NewsBusters previously reported, Roberts has accused people of calling Obama a Muslim because they can’t say “I don’t like him ’cause he’s black.”

In another instance, she asked Congressman Raul Labrador (R-Idaho) why compromise isn’t a "message that you hear," and the Tea Partier responded: "Why is it that compromise always means increasing taxes today and doing cuts in ten years from now?"

Also during Monday’s interview, the NPR analyst stated that “everyone” had asked Romney “about a new Newsweek cover that called him a wimp. And he said that, you know, he doesn’t lose sleep over something like that.”

She added that the GOP candidate also received “more questions about his tax returns. And Democratic operatives out on the airwaves yesterday attacking his trip abroad.”

“So it hasn’t gone exactly as I think that Romney campaign had planned, for him to have something of a triumphal march through London, Jerusalem and then onto Poland,” Roberts said.

Perhaps Romney’s trip would have gone more smoothly if the members of the “mainstream media” hadn’t dogged the candidate and his staff in search of every “mistake” or “dustup” along the way.

2012 Presidential NPR Cokie Roberts Mitt Romney

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