That darn issue of race relations has just bitten the Republican congressional leadership right in the backside.
Don’t you just hate it when that happens?
GOP House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., spoke to a white supremacist group in 2002. The group was founded by a fellow Louisianan, one-time Ku Klux Klan grand dragon/wizard/potentate/medicine man David Duke.
Scalise says now he “regrets” his “error in judgment.” He condemns the views of “groups like that.”
Hey, it was a dozen years ago. No harm done now, right? He spoke six years before entering Congress.
Should he quit his leadership post? Should the congressman quit his House seat? I’m not going there until we know more about what he said and the nature of the invitation.
It does kind of remind me of what happened when former U.S. Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss., had the poor judgment to say something kind about the late Sen. Strom Thurmond’s 1948 presidential campaign. That was when ol’ Strom broke away from the Democratic Party — of which he was a member back then — to run for the White House as a Dixiecrat. He was a segregationist back then — and proud of it, too! He just didn’t like mixing with black people — even though, as we would learn later, he mixed it big time with an African-American woman, with whom he produced a daughter.
Lott said this about Strom: “When Strom Thurmond ran for president, we voted for him. We’re proud of it. And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn’t have had all these problems over all these years, either.”
Oh, brother. That got Lott into some serious trouble. Lott stepped down as majority leader.
Two questions: Did the invitation to Scalise come from a group — the EURO Conference — identified easily as a white supremacist organization? And did he know of Klansman David Duke’s association with it?
The deal-breaker well might be the Duke involvement. Let’s come clean, shall we?