List of supposed racist utterances in United States politics
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- Andrew Jackson (D) – Jackson founded the Democratic Party, or more specifically, Jacksonian democracy. Jackson also served as the U.S. President from 1829 to 1837. He is regarded as a controversial figure for his racism. Jackson, for instance, led an attack against African-Americans in the Battle of Negro Fort. He was known for his excessive number of slaves at the plantation known as The Hermitage. On indigenous Americans, Jackson may have been more prejudiced than with African-Americans. As a general, Jackson's distaste for Native Americans flourished as he massacred the Red Sticks in the Creek War. One source charged Jackson with slaughtering one-thousand Native Americans and sleeping in the field of their corpses before cannibalizing twelve bodies on the following morning. As the president, Jackson fired his chief of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Thomas L. McKenney, for his belief that all men are created equal. Jackson also signed the Indian Removal Act, which led to the Trail of Tears.
- Preston Brooks (D) – A Representative of South Carolina who was a fierce defendant of slavery. Brooks is best remembered for the Caning of Charles Sumner on May 22, 1856 because Sumner gave an Abolitionist speech.
- James Henry Hammond (D) – The U.S. senator from South Carolina, said on March 4, 1858, that in every social system there requires a class to do the menial duties, to perform the drudgery of life, that constitutes the very mudsill of society and no person nor power should declare a war on cotton because cotton is king.
Jim Crow era
- Furnifold McLendel Simmons (D) – Simmons was a U.S. representative and senator of North Carolina, chairman of the Committee on Finance, and presidential candidate. He advocated white supremacy and enacted voter disenfranchisement laws. Simmons, according to Jeter Connelly Pritchard, loudly proclaimed the Democratic party was the "White Man's Party."
- William Walton Kitchin (D) – George Henry White accused Kitchin of racism. White said that Kitchin attempted to disprove African-Americans were worthy of the Fourteenth Amendment. In the first Congressional session, Kitchin aggressively attempted to prove that the white race was always superior by inheritance. Kitchin also led a war against African-Americans U.S. Representatives.
- Ben Tillman (D) – As a self-described white supremacist, Tillman became one of the most virulent faces of Jim Crow laws as his time served as senator and governor of South Carolina. He denied direct involvement in assassination of the African-American state senator, Simon Coker. Tillman had spent his youth in the Streetwater Sabre Club, a hate group, before he led the red shirts in the 1876 election. As a politician, Tillman claimed to be against lynching, yet 18 lynchings occurred. Tillman, furthermore, said that he would personally lynch African-American rapists. Tillman again used violent rhetoric towards the Booker T. Washington dinner at the White House. Tillman also rewrote the state constitution as a method of voter disenfranchisement.
Civil Rights era
- George Wallace (D) – The former Governor of Alabama George Wallace in his 1963 inaugural address, gave the infamous line "segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever". Later the same year, on June 11, in a symbolic opposition to the Civil Rights Movement and integration of American schools, Governor Wallace stood in the door of the Foster Auditorium, blocking the entry of two African-American students. In 1979, Wallace apologized for his actions saying, "I was wrong. Those days are over, and they ought to be over."
- Earl Butz (R) – In 1976 Earl Butz, former Secretary of Agriculture who served under President Nixon and Ford, was asked by Pat Boone in private why the Republican party is failing to attract African American voters. Butz replied with "The only thing the coloreds are looking for in life are tight pussy, loose shoes, and a warm place to shit." After the comment, he was forced to resign.
- David Duke (R) – In 1991, the Louisiana gubernatorial race gained national attention with former Ku Klux Klan member David Duke being the Republican candidate for governor. During a debate with the Democratic candidate Edwin Edwards, Duke was confronted with his past anti-Semitic and racist remarks by moderator Norman Robinson. Duke tried to reason saying "I don't think there's a human being on this earth or in this state who hasn't been at some time intolerant in their life" and that he regretted his words. Robinson said did he not think he was being honest. Duke lost the election, but had a surprising turnout. Today, Duke is a white nationalist and regularly posts anti-Semitic conspiracy related articles on his website.
- Hillary Clinton (D) – During a speech in 1996, Hillary attempted to garner support for President Bill Clinton's 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act by warning against the rise of "super predators". Bernie Sanders claimed this was a racist comment from the stage of the Democratic debate in Brooklyn.
- John McCain (R) – In February 2000, then-presidential candidate John McCain said "I hate the gooks. I will hate them as long as I live." He was using the term to describe the people who captured him in Vietnam. He refused to apologize for his comment and lost the Republican nomination to George W. Bush.
- Robert Byrd (D) – In March 2001, in a Fox News interview, West Virginia senator and former KKK chapter founder Robert Byrd used the term "white niggers". His office later issued an apology.
- Joe Biden (D) – In early 2007, Biden faced criticism after giving the description about then-senator Barack Obama: "I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy". He later apologized for his comments.
- Chip Saltsman (R) – In 2008, Chip Saltsman, who was running to be the Chairman of the Republican National Committee, sent several CDs to RNC members containing the song "Barack the Magic Negro". As a result of controversy he dropped out and lost the election to Michael Steele, who is black.
- Donald Trump (R) – In June 2015, in Donald Trump's speech announcing his candidacy for President of the United States, Trump made a very controversial and widely publicized statement about Mexicans: "When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best. They're not sending you. They're not sending you. They're sending people that have lots of problems, and they're bringing those problems with us. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people."
- On November 22, 2015 presidential candidate Donald Trump personally retweeted an image with inaccurate racially charged crime data between blacks and whites. The first use of the image appeared to be from a neo-Nazi Twitter user. When asked about the image in an interview with Bill O'Reilly, Trump claimed that the picture came from very credible sources.
- In August of 2017 after a Neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, VA in which a white supremacist murdered a counter protester Donald Trump addressed the nation stating that there were "fine people on both sides" of the rally. James S. Robbins argued in a USA Today opinion piece that the quote was taken out of context.
- Taliaferro, John (1828). Supplemental account of some of the bloody deeds of General Jackson, being a supplement to the "Coffin handbill.". Northern Neck: Members of Congress.
- McKenney, Thomas Loraine (1846). Memoirs, Official and Personal; with Sketches of Travels among the Northern and Southern Indians; Embracing a War Excursion and Descriptions of Scenes Along the Western Borders. Volume I. Second Edition. New York: Paine and Burgess.
- Lamson, Peggy. The Glorious Failure: Black Congressman Robert Brown Elliott and Reconstruction in South Carolina. New York: W. W. Norton and Company. 1973. 134.
- Hammond, James Henry (1857). Plantation Manual, 1857-58. Washington, D.C.: Library of Congress.
- Pritchard, Jeter Connelly (1900). On the Proposed Amendment to the Constitution of North Carolina. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office.
- White, George Henry (1901). Congressional Record, 56th Cong., 2d session, vol. 34, pt. 2. Washington, D. C.: Government Printing Office.
- Tillman, Benjamin (1909). The Struggles of '76.
- Bell, Debra (June 11, 2013). "George Wallace Stood in a Doorway at the University of Alabama 50 Years Ago Today". US News. Retrieved February 18, 2017.
- Windham, Ben (March 11, 2012). "SOUTHERN LIGHTS: Malcolm X, George Wallace shared similar qualities". Tuscaloosa News. Retrieved February 18, 2017.
- Noah, Timothy. "Earl Butz, History's Victim". Retrieved April 15, 2016.
- Applebome, Peter. "Duke: The Ex-Nazi Who Would Be Governor". Retrieved April 18, 2016.
- "Louisiana Gubernatorial Debate". Retrieved April 18, 2016.
- Gearan, Anne and Phillip, Abby (February 25, 2016). "Clinton regrets 1996 remark on 'super-predators' after encounter with activist". Washington Post. Retrieved August 2, 2019.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
- Flores, Reena (April 14, 2016). "Bernie Sanders slams Clinton's "racist" 1996 super predators comment". CBS News. Retrieved August 2, 2019.
- "McCain Criticized for Slur / He says he'll keep using term for ex-captors in Vietnam". Retrieved April 15, 2016.
- "Sen. Byrd Apologizes for Racial Epithet". Retrieved April 15, 2016.
- Thai, Xuan & Barrett, Ted. "Biden's description of Obama draws scrutiny". Retrieved April 16, 2016.
- Sinderbrand, Rebecca. "RNC chairman candidate defends 'Barack the Magic Negro' song". Retrieved April 15, 2016.
- Ye Hee Lee, Michelle. "Donald Trump's false comments connecting Mexican immigrants and crime". Retrieved April 16, 2016.
- Feldman, Josh. "O'Reilly Grills Trump on 'Totally Wrong' Tweet; Trump: 'Am I Gonna Check Every Statistic?'". Retrieved April 16, 2016.
- Gettys, Travis. "That racist Trump tweet about blacks killing whites isn't just false, it's neo-Nazi propaganda". Retrieved April 16, 2016.
- PolitiFact. "In Context: Donald Trump's 'very fine people on both sides' remarks". Retrieved May 27, 2019.
- Robbins, James S. "Trump's Charlottesville comments twisted by Joe Biden and the media (Web Title: Joe Biden launched his campaign by lying about Donald Trump)". USA today. Retrieved Aug 21, 2019.