They’ll probably finesse it so that it targets “racist elements” within the tea-party movement rather than declaring the movement itself wholly and irretrievably racist, but of course the goal is to taint everyone involved by association. Despite its absurdities and own occasional racist excesses, the NAACP still has moral authority to burn when it comes to race. So this will serve two purposes: One, it gives them a shot of relevance per the endless media hyperventilating that’ll ensue once they pass it, and two, it’s obviously a nice weapon for Democrats to wield against grassroots candidates like Sharron Angle and Rand Paul in the fall.
The resolution, scheduled for a vote as early as Tuesday by delegates attending the annual NAACP convention in Kansas City, calls upon “all people of good will to repudiate the racism of the Tea Parties, and to stand in opposition to its drive to push our country back to the pre-civil rights era.”…
“I think a lot of people are not taking the tea party movement seriously, and we need to take it seriously,” said Anita Russell, head of the Kansas City chapter of the NAACP. “We need to realize it’s really not about limited government.”…
Among the charges lodged against the tea party in the resolution:
•Tea party supporters have engaged in “explicitly racist behavior” and “displayed signs and posters intended to degrade people of color generally and President Barack Obama specifically.”
•Tea party activists have used racial epithets, have verbally and physically abused black members of Congress and others, and have been charged with threatening public officials.
Sounds like we’ll be revisiting the infamous did-it-or-didn’t-it-happen incident outside the Capitol after O-Care passed, too. Wonderful. Rather than give you conservative defenses of the movement’s motives, which will be dismissed as being partisan-driven, let me arm you with two that come from the left in preparation for the media clusterfark ahead. One is Carville’s survey of Georgia tea partiers conducted last October, when anti-ObamaCare sentiment was at fever pitch. He did find some crackpottery but bluntly advised the press to “get over it” when it came to sniffing around for racial motivations. More recently, TNR editor John Judis pronounced the movement a “terrible menace” to the welfare state but not racist, noting that not only is there no evidence to suspect racial animus in most tea partiers but that, even among those who do show racial resentment, there’s no reason to believe that that’s what’s attracting them to the movement. Interestingly, both Carville and Judis seem driven by the idea that the racial attacks on tea partiers will backfire, probably due to insufficient evidence, and that the left is better off attacking them on perceived ideological flaws. We’ll see about that this week.
If there’s a silver lining in this bit of demagoguery, it’s that this should be a golden opportunity for Tim Scott, Nikki Haley, Marco Rubio, Allen West, and other minority tea-party heroes to get some free media out of it. Exit question: Guess whose tactics Benjamin Jealous, leader of the NAACP, thinks the left should emulate.