Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Bush Worker Fired for Slur at Detroit News Reporter

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Bush Worker Fired for Slur at Detroit News Reporter

Article excerpt

A Bush election campaign aide was fired Aug. 18 for referring to a Detroit News journalist as "this nigger reporter.

White House spokesman Marlin Fitzwater said the aide. Bobby Carr. was fired because he would not. or could not, deny calling reporter Ken Cole a "nigger" during a Bush campaign stop in Michigan July 27.

"Anyone who cannot deny such a statement should not be working for this campaign or for this White House. We, have no room on our staff for

Cole, a reporter in the News Lansing bureau, was assigned to cover Bush as the president arrived at Kent County Airport for a speech in Grand Rapids.

At the airport, Cole and several other reporters found that they had not been given credentials to cover the event.

According to an account by the News. the other reporters were quickly given proper credentials, but Cole, the only black reporter at the event, was not.

Cole and other reporters present were given the impression that the exclusion was racially motivated.

A News story by Dave Farrell, for instance, quoted United Press International reporter Rick Pluta as saying, "It became very apparent that Ken was being singled out for special treatment."

Pluta also arrived without credentials and had no problem getting them, the reporter said.

"The only difference between me and Ken is that my hair is straight and his isn't," Pluta told the News.

According to the News account. when Cole complained to White House aide Bobby Carr, Carr dismissed his concerns. …

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