At a time when even such notable Republicans as Alexander Haig, Colin Powell and even Newt Gingrich are chastising the Republican Party for being out of touch with the American people, I find myself endlessly amazed at the opportunities my erstwhile cohort continues to provide for me to recoil from them. One more good recoil and I will find myself behind myself.
Chip Saltsman – formerly the campaign chairman of the Mike Huckabee election effort, and also formerly a hopeful to replace Mike Duncan as chair of the Republican National Committee – sent a CD out to all 168 members of the RNC with the song “Barack the Magic Negro” on it. The use of the song, by comedian Paul Shanklin and originally aired on the Rush Limbaugh show, raises the bar once again for incredibly stupid moves by major GOP figures.
I share it here for your enlightenment:
It’s not that the song itself is something that should not exist, it’s rather that the Republican Party leadership has become such a magnet for stupidity that bonehead moves like this one are even possible. That a potential leader of the RNC would even dream of sending this out says more about the party than it does about Chipper.
Carol Tidwell Simpson, a college friend of Mr. Saltsman and fervent supporter (and a fervent opponent of, in her words, the “Chosen One”) even gets it in her comment today on the Draft Chip Saltsman facebook group (emphasis mine):
Nathan . . . . I’m about as big a Chip supporter as it gets. I’ve known him WELL since he was about 19 years old. We hung out in college together. We kept in touch as he worked for Gov Sundquist during the time I worked in a Frist TN office. But one thing many of us who have loved Chip and supported him for over 20 years through college endeavors and beyond agree on is: WHAT WAS HE THINKING??????? No, this is not just media bias. This was poor judgement on Chip’s part so close to the RNC election and the Inauguration of the so-called Chosen One. Not just in sending the CD . . . .but also in not understanding that he should issue a mea culpa. It will probably cost him the position. And that’s a shame because he has always had great leadership skills. The Admins will probably delete this post as they did my last one (I can’t wait to call Chip) but the folks who really support him will advise Chip to issue an apology, not a definition of the word satire. I know I will.
We hope the admins don’t delete your comment too, Carol. We’ll keep a copy right here just in case. You are right, though, it was poor judgment on Chip’s part.
But the bigger question is what would lead him to make such a poor judgment call? Could it be that the Republican Party – who had more white faces per capita at its Convention this year than Fargo, North Dakota – just seems like the kind of place where that sort of thing just might be OK? Could it be that the party that set all-time-low records in bringing in the non-white vote has fostered a tone where “Barack The Magic Negro” would seem like a good song to go out caroling with?
Chip’s vaunted leadership skills obviously are no match for his keen insight into political trends. He is following the lead of the power brokers who have given us the Republican Party of 2008 with amazing fidelity.