Watts Spotlights Political Problems in New Biography

Article excerpt

TULSA (AP) -- In his recent biography, U.S. Rep. J.C. Watts discusses his opinions on political parties, race and his past in Oklahoma.

Watts, the only black Republican member of Congress, will begin promoting What Color Is a Conservative? this week.

Watts' surprise retirement announcement this summer fueled speculation that he would use the book to be openly critical of Republicans and their lack of sensitivity to race issues.

While he doesn't give his party a pass, he does criticize the GOP on certain issues.

But only about half the roughly 300-page book is about Watts' political career.

Written with Chriss Winston, the first woman to serve as the top White House speechwriter, the book also covers the congressman's early years growing up poor in segregated Eufaula, his football career at the University of Oklahoma and his mostly unhappy stint in the Canadian Football League.

The book also briefly discusses the two daughters Watts fathered with two different women while a senior in high school.

Watts also uses the book to point out deficiencies among government and political parties in the United States.

He criticizes the political left, saying the group sees itself as a morally superior protector of the common people.

Democrats and others on the left really want nothing more than to protect outdated, failed government programs and embrace the "increasingly valueless culture" of Hollywood, Watts said. …