This is just getting weird, isn't it? To me, it really seems like the Clinton camp is embracing racially charged language in its attacks on Obama. Why is that? It seems to contradict what Clinton stands for (except maybe when she was campaigning for Barry Goldwater at 17). She - and her husband - should be better than that.
Here's the latest. A "Clinton advisor," as quoted in the Guardian:
If you have a social need, you're with Hillary. If you want Obama to be your imaginary hip black friend and you're young and you have no social needs, then he's cool.
Do they hate Obama that much for running against her? So blinded by that rage that they think it's ok to embrace the kind of tactics that have paid such dividends for the Republican party over the years?
You probably find it hard to believe. So do I. But the evidence is becoming compelling. Bill Clinton calling Obama a "kid." Dismissing his media image as a "fairy tale." And don't forget this from Senator Clinton on January 7:
I would point to the fact that Dr. King's dream began to be realized when President Lyndon Johnson passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, when he was able to get through Congress something that President Kennedy was hopeful to do, the president before had not even tried, but it took a president to get it done.
Their supporters are getting in on it, too. Here's a good one from New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, a Clinton surrogate:
It's not a TV crazed race. Frankly you can't buy your way into it ... You can't shuck and jive at a press conference.
I don't like that, either, and I'm not the only one. Here's Clinton ally Donna Brazile on the comments by President Clinton:
For him to go after Obama, using a 'fairy tale,' calling him as he did last week, it's an insult. And I will tell you, as an African-American, I find his tone and his words to be very depressing
And here's James E. Clyburn (D-SC), the highest-ranking African-American in Congress, who has to date remained neutral in the primary race:
We have to be very, very careful about how we speak about that era in American politics ... It is one thing to run a campaign and be respectful of everyone's motives and actions, and it is something else to denigrate those. That bothered me a great deal.
And don't forget the Clinton campaign's reference to Obama's teenage drug use, and suggestion that maybe he actually dealt drugs, too (don't all black youth?). Maybe it's desperation, maybe it's coldly calculated. Or maybe it's nothing - just people like me over reacting in support of our candidate. But I'm having trouble believing that the Clintons, with their decades of experience at the top of Democratic politics, don't know what they're doing by sprinkling a little race-baiting rhetoric on the primaries.