Tags: Barack Obama | Jeremiah Wright | chicago | minister | david duke | louisiana

Ron Christie: Obama's Racist Pastor Far Worse Than Scalise's Error

Image: Ron Christie: Obama's Racist Pastor Far Worse Than Scalise's Error
The Rev. Jeremiah Wright. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

By    |   Friday, 02 Jan 2015 09:45 AM

House Majority Whip Steve Scalise has come under fire for speaking to a group run by former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke, but the media has "amnesia" when it comes to President Barack Obama and his association with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the minister the president disavowed over his own racist statements, says Republican strategist Ron Christie.

"I do not know House Majority Whip Scalise or President Obama personally," Christie wrote in an op-ed for The Daily Beast on Friday. 

"What I do know is that for the media to dismiss our president's 20-year association with a racist pastor while expressing moral outrage over one speech given 12 years ago before a group Scalise claims he knew little about, reeks of rank hypocrisy by a Pretorian Guard interested in protecting Obama at all costs while tearing down Scalise for what appears to be an honest and genuine mistake."

Scalise, R-La., has acknowledged speaking 12 years ago at a gathering of the European-American Unity and Rights Organization, which the Southern Poverty Law Center has labeled as a hate group, but says he was unaware of the group's ideology at the time.

Scalise spokeswoman Moira Bagley told The Washington Post that he was not aware of the group's association with racists and neo-Nazis. Scalise was a state lawmaker when he spoke to the group.

Christie said he is willing to give Scalise the benefit of the doubt about his speech, noting that the congressman has a reputation for "integrity, intelligence and wisdom," and that he's been supported by House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, who has "zero tolerance for racism and bigotry."

"In fairness, my alarm bells would have been ringing off the hook if I received an invitation to speak before an organization run by Duke," said Christie. "Again, Scalise has expressed his regret for a 'mistake' and that he had no idea of the group’s leadership."

But the U.S. media is eager to "paint the GOP as racist" without using any perspective, said Christie. He said he could not help but remember Obama's association with Wright, whom he described as having a "racist past but one who continued to preach racism from the pews to the present day."

Obama was a member of Wright's Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, calling the minister his second father and having Wright officiate over his marriage and the baptisms of both of his children.

"What I find ironic is that Scalise is being excoriated for one speech before one group in which the gentleman in question professed no knowledge of white supremacist ties — while the current occupant of the Oval Office had to have known about the racist invective Pastor Wright issued from his pulpit each Sunday," said Christie.

Further, Christie pointed out that Wright's church adopted the "Black Value System" in 1981, about seven years before Obama joined the church.

"There is reference after reference to the 'black community,' 'black worth ethic,' and adherence to the 'black value system,'" said Christie.

"Can you imagine the outrage if Rep. Scalise had spoken before a group in Louisiana whose attendees vowed fealty to a 'white value system?'"

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Rep. Steve Scalise has come under fire for speaking to a group run by David Duke, but the media has "amnesia" when it comes to President Obama and his association with the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, whom the president disavowed over racist statements, says Republican strategist Ron Christie.
Jeremiah Wright, chicago, minister, david duke, louisiana
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2015-45-02
Friday, 02 Jan 2015 09:45 AM
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