Thursday, April 22, 2010

We all knew this, but nice to hear RNC chair admitting to "Southern Strategy"

If we ever want to stop re-fighting the Civil War, the first step is going to have to be admitting that in the space of American mythology and imagination (and hence politics), we're still fighting the Civil War. Republican National Committee chair Michael Steele comes out and says it:

"We have lost sight of the historic, integral link between the party and African-Americans," Steele said. "This party was co-founded by blacks, among them Frederick Douglass. The Republican Party had a hand in forming the NAACP, and yet we have mistreated that relationship. People don't walk away from parties, Their parties walk away from them.

"For the last 40-plus years we had a 'Southern Strategy' that alienated many minority voters by focusing on the white male vote in the South. Well, guess what happened in 1992, folks, 'Bubba' went back home to the Democratic Party and voted for Bill Clinton."

I can't imagine most Republican powers will be happy with Steele's statement.

By the way Ta-Nehisi Coates at The Atlantic has a great series of posts commemorating "Confederate History Month" from the perspective of an African-American Civil War buff.

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