Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Race Card in Play

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Race Card in Play

Article excerpt

It's crumpled, tattered and smudged from overuse, but it's the only card Democrats and liberal journalists have left to play, so expect them to play the race card even more.

The economy is sick, and they hate his health care plan. But that isn't why Americans have soured on President Barack Obama, said the executive director of the Congressional Black Caucus. Opposition is racially motivated, Angela Rye declared. Her evidence? Crossroads GPS, the Karl Rove SuperPAC, used the word "cool" in an ad.

"Persistent racial animosity" undergirds opposition to the president, agreed New York Magazine columnist John Heilemann, who felt no need to produce evidence to back up that accusation.

The facts say otherwise. In 2008, there was a great deal Americans didn't know about Barack Obama. But all Americans knew then that he was (half) black. Yet he won by the largest popular vote margin of any Democrat since Lyndon Johnson in 1964.

Mr. Obama's personal approval ratings are higher than his job approval, polls indicate. This couldn't be so if it were racism that fuels opposition to his policies. The race card is played to obscure the facts, whenever the facts are uncongenial to Democrats:

* Barack Obama has spent far more than any previous president. He's run deficits of more than $1 trillion each year -- doubling the national debt in less than four years.

Alarmed, citizens across the country banded together to protest reckless spending. But that wasn't what really bothered the Tea Partiers, said Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson. Their criticism of the president's spending was so vociferous because "he's different from other presidents, and that the difference is his race."

The Tea Party is "seriously racist," said NPR executive Ron Schiller.

How then to explain why the winner by big margins in the presidential straw polls Tea Party groups held last year was radio talk show host and former Godfather's Pizza CEO Herman Cain, who is (all) black? …

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