If the Democrats don’t nominate Obama, does that mean they’re racist? Nah. If the GOP doesn’t nominate Rudy, does that mean they’re racist? Maybe!

I’ve been wondering how we were going to get demagogued on race now that Condi’s out. Moran finds a hole and runs for daylight:

Who counts as white in America has been a fluid concept in our history, and Italians have only recently–and perhaps incompletely in some quarters–been admitted to the racial club…

But that’s a done deal for Italian-Americans, long ago. They’re white–now. But the question for Giuliani is whether there is some shadow, some echo of the old attitudes in how some voters might approach his candidacy…

This is a party, after all, that has nominated precisely one ethnic immigrant candidate for national office in its history–Greek-American Spiro Agnew (the Roosevelts and Eisenhowers had been in America for centuries). Republicans have never nominated a Catholic for national office…

Look at a map of the 2004 election results, county by county. What you see is a nation divided by diversity. Rudy Giuliani’s candidacy challenges that division, and raises the question: Is he white enough?

So the Giuliani candidacy might tell us something about today’s Republican Party. And about America.

In other words, if conservatives don’t vote for the pro-choice, pro-gay, twice-divorced, open-borders candidate, it’s quite possibly because they fear the Eye-talian. Exit question for our southern readers, since that’s clearly whom Moran has in mind: Is he right? Is Rudy a wee bit too “ethnic,” notwithstanding his anti-mafia crusade as U.S. Attorney and the right’s cult of Scalia among judicial appointees? Bonus exit question: As a fellow Eye-talian, does this mean I’m officially a “brown person”?

Update: Bonus bonus exit question: Does Rudy have a political death wish?