A painting of Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal that people claim makes him look white has sparked a Twitter war between the governor's chief of staff and a liberal blogger.
The portrait of the potential presidential candidate has been hanging opposite the elevators on the fourth floor of the governor's Capitol offices in Baton Rouge for seven years, according to The Times-Picayune of New Orleans
But the newspaper says the painting turned into an "Internet sensation" this week after a war of words erupted on the social media site between left-leaning CenLamar
blogger Lamar White and Jindal's chief of staff Kyle Plotkin.
White started the feud by sending out a tweet with the picture of the painting, saying it was the Republican governor's "official portrait."
The tweet resulted in "many comments" on Twitter from people pointing out that the painting makes Jindal out to be a white man, the Times-Picayune reported. Jindal's parents are immigrants from India.
Jim Norris, for example wrote
, "I don't think that's how whitewashing your image is supposed to work."
And another person tweeted: "He's white now. Does his mom know?" And "GoBrooklyn, asked, "Who's the white guy?"
Within hours, Plotkin had hit back at Lamar on Twitter, accusing him of "race-baiting," while also posting the actual official portrait of Jindal.
And in a follow-up email, Plotkin said: "Liberals want to race-bait and they think the governor looks insufficiently brown in the picture. No other reason to tweet that picture. They are ok with the governor being brown, but they want to make sure he knows it."
Citing Jindal's office, the Times-Picayune noted that New Orleans area real estate developer Henry Shane commissioned the non-official portrait from local artist Tommy Yow, and it's been on loan to the Capitol since 2008.
The Twitter battle comes less than a month after human rights attorney Arsalan Iftikhar was banned from MSNBC
for his "offensive" racially-charged remark that Jindal was "trying to scrub some of the brown off his skin."
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