I still believe this “#Niggerheadgate” will blow over before the next debate. This week has already seen more than its fair share of racial politics and strangely intertwined narratives. In a nut shell it goes something like – Rick Perry gets in trouble over a racial slur on his ranch, then fires back at Herman Cain for questioning his sensitivity, meanwhile Hank Williams Jr. got kicked off Monday Night Football for calling Obama the enemy and comparing him to Hitler adding he “likes Herman Cain” who himself later backs off Perry. Here’s the deal, it does not benefit the Republican Party to have this issue out there. I expect at the most from any debate one question from the moderator but the candidates will wisely avoid any further comments.
Stephen Colbert’s take is of course amazing…
Here is Hank Williams comparing Obama to Hitler on Fox and Friends. The Fox cast immediately went into damage control distancing themselves from his comments. This was a clash of class between wall street corporate type Republicans and the down home conservative values viewer that is thier base. In this case It seems they don’t like what one of the “folks” had to say. However, its the same stuff Rush Limbaugh spouts every single day for 3 hours on the radio. Ironically ESPN had previously employed Limbaugh and then canned him as well for a racially insensitive comment. But just listen to Bocephus, right off the bat he acknowledges that he’d rather just be “over there looking at Gretchen”. Racists, sexists, its hard to blame someone who is equal opportunity. Though it does beg the question, Hank, why must you live all the songs that you wrote? Also, did Alabama want its hat back?
As someone who has followed Rick Perry’s career for the better part of my life I do not believe he is racist. I also believe Perry and his handlers are far too politically savvy to have something like that exist as a liability. The stone in question was most likely first chiseled on over 100 years ago and is certainly an ugly reminder of the past though not necessarily a view shared by association. But now, we get to hear about Perry’s friends who happen to be black when they were appointed to various commissions. Thats is fair he has appointed more blacks to such positions than any other Texas Governor though, it should be noted he is also the longest serving Governor of our increasingly diverse state. I’m sure Perry’s opponents wouldn’t mind if this incident took his campaign as a casualty but I don’t see any one of them personally gaining from continuing to address it. There are plenty of race cards still to be dealt in this primary. Just two weeks ago the GOP field accused him of being soft on illegal immigrants and I do expect to be big topic in the next debate. I suspect he will hold the line here and use this as an opportunity to pivot to the center if he wins the nomination. He must get a good chuck of the hispanic vote to win battleground states in the Southwest and Florida. In the 2010 election for Governor, Perry set a goal of 50% of the Hispanic vote in Texas. If he can convince establishment Republicans that he can do that across the country he can finally tell Obama he has always wanted to, “Adios Mofo.”