As historian and MSNBC contributor Jon Meacham appeared as a guest on Friday's Real Time with Bill Maher on HBO, he repeatedly made references to racist public figures or groups from history like George Wallace and the KKK as he discussed modern-day political battles and President Donald Trump. At one point, he lectured about American history: "But the forces the President embodies -- and the forces that he marshaled and managed to become President -- are perennial ones. The American spirit isn't just about Martin Luther King Jr.-- it's also about the Klan. And the battle is between those two."
As NewsBusters previously reported, Chris Matthews on Tuesday likened Texas governor Rick Perry to segregationist Bull Connor.
On Fox's "America's Newsroom" Wednesday, Daily Caller editor Tucker Carlson took exception with this (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The anchor first accused Arpaio of arresting people at random in his immigration raids: “What about the other people that- who you interfered in their lives simply while you were looking for someone else?” When the sheriff denied that he had, that “the others that were illegal, we put them in jail because they have committed other crimes,” Sanchez made the Nazi reference:
On his segment of today's CNN Newsroom, anchor Rick Sanchez went for the hat trick, likening Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio to the infamous Theophilus “Bull” Connor, Birmingham, Alabama’s late segregationist police commissioner who ruthlessly used police attack dogs and fire hoses to thwart 1963 civil rights demonstrators, no fewer than three times.
[SEE also Matt Balan's related post, with video.]
Sanchez prefaced his interview with the Arizona sheriff:
Well, perhaps not since Bull Connor whose aggressive police tactics against blacks in the South sparked civil rights legislation in 1964 has our country seen a showdown like the one going on right now between Maricopa County sheriff Joe Arpaio and Washington, as in the feds.
Ain't this post-racial period great? Here we have one of the more famous members of the Black Congressional Caucus accusing Senate Democrats of threatening to act like Orville Faubus, George Wallace and perhaps the most iconic of segregationists, Bull Connor.
Bobby Rush, the former Black Panther who is now a congressman from Chicago, levelled his accusation on the CBS Early Show this morning in reaction to the letter signed by all 50 Senate Democrats declaring that they would not seat Roland Burris, the African-American that Gov. Rod Blagojevich yesterday named to take Barack Obama's Senate seat.
Leave it to Rush to nail it. Here's how Limbaugh opened today's show, speaking of the way Bill Clinton injected race into the campaign with his comparison [view video of Clinton making his statement here] of Obama's South Carolina primary victory to Jesse Jackson's twin wins in the Palmetto State in the '80s:
We've gone from Bull Connor to Bull Clinton.