A new superPAC has launched an ad campaign that accuses President Obama of purporting racism against White people.
FightBigotry, which was registered with the Federal Election Commission last week, alleges that Obama has been given a free pass on “his disturbing, yet crystal-clear pattern of tacitly defending black racism against white folks before and since being elected president.” The political action committee (PAC) makes the claims in an ad on its website.
The ad cites, in making its claim, the Justice Department’s decision to drop a case of voter intimidation against the New Black Panthers in 2009. It also splices in samples of then-candidate Obama’s famous speech on race that he gave during the Rev. Jeremiah Wright controversy. In that speech, the president said that his grandmother, despite her love for him, would often make unthinkingly racist comments.
But, the ad edits the video to make it appear as if Obama was writing off his grandmother as a “typical White person” and that he supported Wright’s bigoted rants though Obama firmly denounced those views.
“Mr. President, you ran as the candidate of change,” the ad’s narrator says. “But one thing has not changed—your tacit defense of racism against white folks, despite receiving nearly half the White vote to win the presidency.”
In another example of reverse racism, the ad asserts, Attorney General Eric Holder publicly stated that the administration’s critics are motivated by race. “Implying Whites are too stupid to have honest disagreements with the presidents is in and of itself racist against Whites,” the narrator says.
The assertion is based on a December 2011 interview with The New York Times in which Holder accused “a few” of the president’s critics—the “more extreme segment”—of unfair smear campaigns against Holder that were motivated by “animus” against President Obama.
“This is a way to get at the president because of the way I can be identified with him,” Holder was quoted as saying, “both due to the nature of our relationship and, you know, the fact that we’re both African-American.”
According to ThinkProgress, FightBigotry is the brainchild of Stephen Marks, an infamous Republican opposition researcher and media consultant, who authored the 2008 book Confessions of a Political Hitman. The organization said Marks ran similar attack-style ads against Al Gore and John Kerry.
Political analyst Lester Spence said he is not surprised by the injection of race in a negative ad aimed at the president.
“There’s always been this racial undertone in the attacks against the president,” said the associate professor of political science at Johns Hopkins University. “But now with this ad this undertone has become more of an overtone.”
Jason Johnson, a political analyst who teaches at Hiram College in Ohio, agreed.
“ is reflective of where the Republican Party really is in terms of their view of the president. They still believe Barack Obama is this man of consummate evil who wants to destroy the world,” he said.
Spence and Johnson expressed skepticism in the superPAC’s ability to raise money and to garner support for Republican nominee Mitt Romney, however.
“It doesn’t strike me as something that would magically transform the voting public,” Johnson said. “It’s not going to make anybody like Romney over Obama, or make them decide to vote for Romney instead of Obama. Anyone who believes this ad was not going to vote for Obama anyway.”