McCain Supporters Reveal Racism

While the McCain/Palin campaign tries to run a “respectable” official campaign by apologizing, his supporters continue to display some pretty overt racism in a variety of ways.   For example, a white man attending a McCain/Palin rally over the weekend showed up with a “Curious George” doll with an Obama sticker on it (link opens a video).    Nice.

And, there’s this photo of a sign in Warren County, Pa., taken on Oct. 5 by Maryland resident Kurt Kolaja, who was attending a wedding in the area (and first published here).  Very nice, indeed.

So as the McCain/Palin campaign tries to officially distance itself from these overt expressions of racism, attributing this sort of thing to the actions of the “occasional nut.” While I was initially willing to cut McCain some slack when I heard him challenge some of his supporters this weekend, as time rolls on, his protestations seem half-hearted and disingenuous.   All of this raises the issue of whether or not the campaign should be held accountable for their supporters’ amped up the racist expressions that seem emboldened with a sense of entitlement and outrage.

Rep. John Lewis stepped into this controversy with the following statement:

“What I am seeing reminds me too much of another destructive period in American history. Sen. McCain and Gov. Palin are sowing the seeds of hatred and division, and there is no need for this hostility in our political discourse,” Lewis said in a statement.

George Wallace never threw a bomb. He never fired a gun, but he created the climate and the conditions that encouraged vicious attacks against innocent Americans who were simply trying to exercise their constitutional rights.

I agree with Jill (at Jack & Jill Politics) that Lewis was right to draw this parallel.  What do you think?


  1. JDF

    I think you’re right, Jessie, that Lewis’ statement was totally legitimate. McCain and his campaign are basically reaping what they’ve sown. I liked Jon Stewart’s analogy last night to the monster’s creator who then gets mad when it starts breaking stuff in the lab (or even turning on him). The best moment was when McCain had asked the crowd the rhetorical question “Who is the real Barack Obama?” and someone yelled out “Terrorist!” And McCain had this look on his face like he was confused and baffled by such an utterance. He’s trying to have it both ways: denounce the very racists his own campaign invites to the stage and given a microphone (including his own running mate).

  2. Hannah

    I also agree with John Lewis’s parallel to the atmosphere the McCain campaign is creating. I find it irritating that McCain continually points to the fact that Obama did not repudiate this claim. For one, it is (in my view) pretty accurate, another issue is that John Lewis is not directly involved in Barack Obama’s campaign, so why should Obama have to repudiate this statement?

    I did appreciate it when McCain tried to calm down his supporters this weekend by taking the mic away from one woman and telling people at the rally not to be afraid of Obama, but then to turn around and make such a huge issue that Obama does not repudiate every negative thing said about McCain’s campaign by any Democrat makes McCain’s efforts seem a little less noble. Not to mention his running mate does not seem as concerned about the outlandish and frightening statements made at her rallies.


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