Notable Quotables: GOP Candidates Pandering to Black-Hating, Jim Crow-Loving Conservatives

You know liberals are desperate if they’re playing the race card so early in the 2012 campaign cycle. The latest edition of MRC’s Notable Quotables is now out, and this week’s collection was heavy with media quotes attacking both Republican voters and their presidential candidates as racist.

Among the lowlights: NBC’s Ann Curry accusing Newt Gingrich of “intentionally playing the race card” when he talked about President Obama’s dismal economic record, and ex-CNN correspondent Bob Franken nastily asserting that conservative voters harbor “a real resentment against blacks,” and “would love to see us return to the good old days of Jim Crow.”

The worst quotes are below the jump; the full issue can be read at (PDF version)

Castigating Gingrich: You're "Insulting" Black Americans

"You also said poor kids lack a strong work ethic and proposed having them work as janitors in their schools. Can't you see that this is viewed, at a minimum, as insulting to all Americans, but particularly to black Americans?...I gotta tell you that my e-mail account, my Twitter account, has been inundated with people from all races who are asking if your comments are not intended to belittle the poor and racial minorities....It sounds as if you are seeking to belittle people."
— Fox News contributor and former NPR analyst Juan Williams to Newt Gingrich during the January 16 presidential debate.

Gingrich Baited GOP Audience's "Bloodlust" — "He Ought to Be Ashamed"

"In that audience, with that kind of bloodlust in the air, an audience that was way over the line, way over the top, Gingrich was playing a dangerous game by playing to the audience and baiting people, appealing to their worst instincts, instead of their better instincts."
Politico's Roger Simon on Hardball, January 17.

"Williams could see that saying that black Americans should want jobs not food stamps was insulting. Gingrich then laid into him saying that President Obama had put more Americans on food stamps than any other President. He got a lot of applause for that. Why would saying that get you a big, hearty applause? Because this whole conversation isn't about poverty, but about race....Gingrich is a smart guy. He ought to be ashamed of himself."
— MSNBC host Chris Matthews wrapping up Hardball, January 17.

"Quoting a New York Times editorial, ‘In South Carolina, where a Confederate flag still waves on the front lawn of the state capitol, largely because of the efforts of the state GOP, it remains good primary politics to stir up racial animosity and then link it to President Obama.' Are you intentionally playing the race card to win votes?"
— Co-host Ann Curry to Gingrich on NBC's Today, January 19.

Pandering to Black-Hating, Jim Crow-Loving Conservatives

"These seem to be appeals to the extreme white wing of the Republican Party. That is to say that there continues to be among many conservatives a real resentment against blacks....I think this is very intentional, it is pandering, there's sort of a wink-wink that this base should be reminded that Barack Obama, President of the United States, is one of them, an African-American. Yes, I think this is very intentional. I think it is part of a hateful campaign that is being very methodically run in the hope it's going to appeal to voters who would love to see us return to the good old days of Jim Crow."
— Former CNN correspondent Bob Franken talking about the GOP candidates on MSNBC's PoliticsNation, January 6.

Correction: Republicans Are Even More Racist than I Previously Suggested

"A post in my blog on Tuesday, about the undertone of racism in American politics, drew a great deal of angry e-mail and critical commentary....One thing I could have made clearer in my blog post is that racially tinged and outright racist attacks did not begin with the election of Mr. Obama. They have been going on for a long time, and yes, particularly from Republicans. This bitter strain was evident in my first assignment for the Times in the 1988 general election, when the infamous ‘Willie Horton ad' was used against Gov. Michael Dukakis...."
New York Times editorial page editor Andrew Rosenthal in a January 6 posting to his "Loyal Opposition" blog at, referring to an earlier post that slammed the "racist undertone" of various Republican criticisms of President Obama.

Hypocrite Romney Selling Out His Mexican Cousins

Correspondent Mike Taibbi: "He's in opposition to the Dream Act, obviously. He supports a border fence, and his cousins down there [in Mexico] say that doesn't make any sense at all....
Anchor Brian Williams: "And couldn't you make the case the [Romney] family tree is an aspect of the Dream Act?"
Taibbi: "Absolutely. His father could be the poster boy for the Dream Act."
— NBC's Rock Center, January 9, talking about the fact that an ancestor of Mitt Romney moved to a Mormon colony in Mexico in the 1800s; Mitt's branch of the Romney family, including his father, moved back to the United States in 1912, 35 years before the current presidential candidate was born.

"Impressive" Jon Huntsman, "the Sane Republican"

Correspondent Bill Whitaker: "The 51-year-old Huntsman has flown under the radar, despite his impressive resume....His economic plan, a streamlined tax code that eliminates all deductions and lowers all rates, has been deemed best of the campaign by the Wall Street Journal. Unlike most of the Republican field, he believes humans contribute to climate change.... [to Huntsman] You've also called yourself ‘the sane Republican."
Jon Huntsman: "My management style has always been to look realistically at issues. I don't pander."
CBS Evening News, January 5.

"Grotesquely Underappreciated" Obama vs. "Dumb" Critics

"Given the enormity of what he inherited, and given what he explicitly promised, it remains simply a fact that Obama has delivered in a way that the unhinged right and purist left have yet to understand or absorb.... What I see in front of my nose is a President whose character, record, and promise remain as grotesquely underappreciated now as they were absurdly hyped in 2008. And I feel confident that sooner rather than later, the American people will come to see his first term from the same calm, sane perspective. And decide to finish what they started."
— Andrew Sullivan in Newsweek's January 23 cover story, "Why Are Obama's Critics So Dumb?"

Bumbling Republicans "Not Worthy" of "Talented" and "Wise" Reporters

"On this night, this gym at St. Anselm College is packed with the most talented political journalists in America. There are the old and wise heads, who have covered many of these presidential primary races and I shall not name out of deference to their tenuous hold on their careers.... But the real question I have is this one: Is the Republican field worthy of the press that covers it?"
Politico's Roger Simon in a January 8 column about the Republican candidates, "They Are Not Worthy."


Racism 2012 Presidential New York Times Newsweek MSNBC Today NBC Roger Simon Juan Williams Newt Gingrich