Romney Campaign Graduates From Dog Whistles to Full-On George Wallace Style Race Baiting

When I read this article in the Telegraph last night, I could hardly believe the evidence of my own eyes. JJ mentioned it this morning, but I think it is worthy of a separate post.

The Telegraph’s John Swaine writes (emphasis added):

As the Republican presidential challenger accused Barack Obama of appeasing America’s enemies in his first foreign policy speech of the US general election campaign, advisers told The Daily Telegraph that he would abandon Mr Obama’s “Left-wing” coolness towards London.

In remarks that may prompt accusations of racial insensitivity, one suggested that Mr Romney was better placed to understand the depth of ties between the two countries than Mr Obama, whose father was from Africa.

“We are part of an Anglo-Saxon heritage, and he feels that the special relationship is special,” the adviser said of Mr Romney, adding: “The White House didn’t fully appreciate the shared history we have”.

“Racial insensitivity?” That has to be the understatement of the century so far. I’ll call it what it is: racism. BTW, do you suppose Romney’s advisers know that Kenya was part of the British empire? There’s more:

Members of the former Massachusetts governor’s foreign policy advisory team claimed that as president, he would reverse Mr Obama’s priority of repairing strained overseas relationships while not spending so much time maintaining traditional alliances such as Britain and Israel.

“In contrast to President Obama, whose first instinct is to reach out to America’s adversaries, the Governor’s first impulse is to consult and co-ordinate and to move closer to our friends and allies overseas so they can rely on American constancy and strength,” one told the Telegraph.

“Obama is a Left-winger,” said another. “He doesn’t value the Nato alliance as much, he’s very comfortable with American decline and the traditional alliances don’t mean as much to him. He wouldn’t like singing ‘Land of Hope and Glory’.”

The two advisers said Mr Romney would seek to reinstate the Churchill bust displayed in the Oval Office by George W. Bush but returned to British diplomats by Mr Obama when he took office in 2009. One said Mr Romney viewed the move as “symbolically important” while the other said it was “just for starters”, adding: “He is naturally more Atlanticist”.

The Churchill bust was lent to George W. Bush during his term in office. President Obama returned it to the British Embassy, and put a bust of Abraham Lincoln in the oval office instead.

Mitt Romney has been going around for the past week calling President Obama’s policies (which Romney misrepresents) “foreign.”

Then yesterday, in a speech to the VFW, Romney said the following:

The President’s policies have made it harder to recover from the deepest recession in seventy years … exposed the military to cuts that no one can justify … compromised our national-security secrets … and in dealings with other nations, given trust where it is not earned, insult where it is not deserved, and apology where it is not due….

I am an unapologetic believer in the greatness of this country. I am not ashamed of American power. I take pride that throughout history our power has brought justice where there was tyranny, peace where there was conflict, and hope where there was affliction and despair. I do not view America as just one more point on the strategic map, one more power to be balanced.

He’s implying that those are Obama’s views. Romney then goes on to blame Obama for the “over the cliff” defense budget cuts that were forced by the Republican’s refusal to compromise during the fight over increasing the debt limit. Next he accuses Obama of leaking national security secrets. Toward the end of the speech Romney goes a step too far:

It is a mistake – and sometimes a tragic one – to think that firmness in American foreign policy can bring only tension or conflict. The surest path to danger is always weakness and indecision. In the end, it is resolve that moves events in our direction, and strength that keeps the peace.

I will not surrender America’s leadership in the world. We must have confidence in our cause, clarity in our purpose, and resolve in our might.

This is very simple: if you do not want America to be the strongest nation on earth, I am not your President. You have that President today.

And then last night we heard what Romney’s advisers told the Telegraph in advance of the candidate’s arrival in London.

Predictably, Romney is now denying the quotes in John Swaine’s Telegraph article. From the National Journal:

“It’s not true,’’ said campaign spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg. “If anyone said that, they weren’t reflecting the views of Governor Romney or anyone inside the campaign.”

The London paper quoted an unnamed adviser saying, “We are part of an Anglo-Saxon heritage, and [Romney] feels that the special relationship is special. The White House didn’t fully appreciate the shared history we have.’’

Asked to be specific about what wasn’t true – whether the quote was fabricated or whether the sentiment was inaccurate – the campaign did not immediately respond.

The Telegraph has told Think Progress that it stands by its story.

As an American, I find Romney campaign’s behavior deeply embarrassing, and I doubt if this will be the end of it. I expect Romney to find ways to undermine President Obama–and in the process–our country’s official policies–during his travels in Great Britain, Israel, Poland, and the Czech Republic. The U.S. media needs to call out Romney on his racist dog whistles–which have now become fully audible shrieks. This is a disgrace, and I do not believe that most Americans will go along with it. Romney is playing with fire.

43 Comments on “Romney Campaign Graduates From Dog Whistles to Full-On George Wallace Style Race Baiting”

  1. bostonboomer says:

    Via Think Progress, Greg Sargent also confirmed with John Swaine that Swaine spoke directly to “a member of” Romney’s “foreign advisory team.”

    • Isn’t The Telegraph a “right” leaning news outlet? Perhaps the Romney campaign viewed the reporter as “one of us.” I don’t know. This is huge, just like Bain and those offshore accounts and tax returns. And it seems to me that Romney is getting away with it all!

      As far as the shit he said at the VFW, I think all of Romney’s comments on Foreign Policy are outrageous. He is a menace…remember the things he said while Hillary was in China?

  2. bostonboomer says:

    Joe Biden reacts to the Telegraph story:

    “The comments reported this morning are a disturbing start to a trip designed to demonstrate Governor Romney’s readiness to represent the United States on the world’s stage,” Biden said in a written statement released by the Obama campaign. “Not surprisingly, this is just another feeble attempt by the Romney campaign to score political points at the expense of this critical partnership. This assertion is beneath a presidential campaign.”

    • RalphB says:

      That assertion is beneath a campaign for county sheriff!

      • ANonOMouse says:

        “That assertion is beneath a campaign for county sheriff!”

        Unless you’re Rosco P. Coaltrain. 🙂

        There is an element in our society that’s nodding it’s head in approval and elation as we’re seething and fuming over the comment. Sorry bastards!!!!

  3. bostonboomer says:

    Who is advising Romney on foreign affairs? John Bolton for one. Here’s a list from Alternet.

  4. bostonboomer says:

    This is interesting. Amanda Henneberg and Andrea Saul once again released identical responses to the Telegraph story. Word for word the same. Neither explains what specifically is not true in the extensive quotes from unnamed Romney advisers.

    • RalphB says:

      Robot message control.

    • RalphB says:

      On second thought, this could mean they formulated this denial earlier because the whole thing was planned from the start. Rmoney gets to fire up the wingnuts while other voters may believe his press flacks.

  5. Tim says:

    Oh no, he’s not coming here is he? Look, I know we sent over Piers Morgan but that’s a bit harsh.

    • bostonboomer says:

      He’s already in London, Tim. Look out!

    • Seriously says:

      You sent us Andrew Sullivan and Christopher Hitchens, karma always catches up eventually. 😉

    • dakinikat says:

      You are probably safe in Wales since he isn’t hobnobbing with Picts, Celts,Britons or Scots … he seems to only be looking for those legendary Anglo Saxons that made such a great living coming to Britain to sack everything and sacrifice the local prepubscent virgins to their war gods. He will probably hold up in the tower of London and try to commune with William the conqueror. Of course that assumes he knows about the Norman Invasion.

      • NW Luna says:

        Nah, or he would have instead said Obama isn’t part of the French-Norman heritage, since the Normans squashed the Anglo-Saxons, and made French the language of the English ruling class for so long.

        I doubt anything Romney studied stuck in his head except exploitation.

      • Tim says:

        Yeah, never really thought of my self as Anglo-Saxon, possibly Celt, but I know there’s a bunch of heritage in me and it doesn’t really matter who your ancestors were, it’s who you are. He probably thinks he’s in England and that’s fine. And if we’re talking about displaced peoples of countries…

        The thing is, we live in the 21st century and most of the globe is open to everyone. Are the people who moved over to Britain in the early part of the 20th century from the Caribbean less British than me? I don’t think so.

      • bostonboomer says:

        I think Ann Romney is visiting Wales right now!

  6. ANonOMouse says:

    The Anglo-Saxon comment proves that these fools stay awake at night just looking for new ways to dog whistle.

    • bostonboomer says:

      The Anglo-Saxon reference has Mormon connotations, so I think it comes from Romney himself. I’ve been reading about it and will try to write something about it.

    • northwestrain says:

      Exactly right about the Mormon connection. Since I’m 1/2 Mormon on my father’s side and have researched his genealogy here’s a bit of history. Not long after Smith invented the Mormon religion he send Mormon missionaries to England etc. to recruit new members. There was a massive conversion and the converts started arriving — some of my ancestors were on those boats. The Mormon invasion got so bad that at one point the immigration form for those arriving from Europe asked if the individual was Mormon and also at one point there was a question about polygamy. From the detailed history of my great great grandfather he was converted in England and then traveled directly to the LDS compound in Illinois. That settlement broke up and everyone scattered waiting for word on the new promised land (Utah was the final destination for the LDS).

      • dakinikat says:

        BB and I have been doing some discussing and research on the Mormon connection with the “Anglo Saxon” meme since it’s one of Glenn Beck’s favorite themes … Wait until you read what BB’s been digging up today. I remembered a Hitchen’s VF article from about 1 1/2 years ago researching Glenn Beck going on and on about the Anglo Saxon lost tribe thing and the Mormon belief that the founding fathers of the US (many of which I descend from so I find it directly insulting) supposedly are descendents of the “superior’ tries of Israel … it’s one of their biggest racist dog whistles. It relates to their doctrine of both black and native american inferiority. Like I said, BB’s been doing some research and she’s really found a lot of stuff since our conversation last night .. I remembered it was Willard”Cleon” Skousen who BB found out was a teacher of Willard “Mitt” Romney at BYU that wrote about a lot of this gobshite. Like I said, stay tuned because with her research and writing skills it’s bound to be a zinger …

      • northwestrain says:

        Ute Indians were told if they were baptized as Mormons their skin would turn white. I have a pile of some old history books — Native Americans who were displaced by the Mormons take over of traditional Indian land. Just one more example of genocide.

  7. bostonboomer says:

    Romney campaign responds to Biden statement:

    Today, the race for the highest office in our land was diminished to a sad level when the Vice President of the United States used an anonymous and false quote from a foreign newspaper to prop up their flailing campaign. The President’s own press secretary has repeatedly discredited anonymous sources, yet his political advisors saw fit to advance a falsehood. We have very serious problems confronting our nation and American families are hurting, yet the Obama campaign continues to try to divert voters’ attention with specious shiny objects. We have more faith in American voters, and know they will see this latest desperate ploy for what it is.

    Please note the use of the word “foreign” once again. If the quotes were true, why isn’t Romney attacking the Telegraph? Biden didn’t write the story.

    • RalphB says:

      They haven’t complained to the Telegraph or asked for a retraction at this time. It’s true or they certainly would have done it.

    • bostonboomer says:

      They’re all stuck in the ’70s.

      • ANonOMouse says:

        He’s back in the USSR.

      • ANonOMouse says:

        One of the Teabots main hate themes is that Obama is conspiring with the communist, Putin, to undermine America. They don’t know Russia is no longer communist and that Putin hasn’t been a communist since the early 90’s

      • ANonOMouse says:

        After they stay up all night working on new dog whistles they put all their remaining energy into creating new boogey-men or resurrecting old one’s.

  8. northwestrain says:

    Sure 0bama’s biological father was from Kenya, African. But he wasn’t raised by his father.

    0bama through his mother and his grandparents who raised him has closer cultural ties to Kansas. 0bama political roots are really Kansan — and the Great Depression. The great dust bowl shaped the Kansans who lived through it — as his grandparents did. (My mom is 3rd generation Kansan.)

    Apparently the Romney camp wants the dog whistle voters to ignore the fact that 0bama is half white — and Midwestern middle class white at that!! In Hawaii 0bama was probably called a coconut — brown on the outside and white inside.

    I’m guessing that my fellow Sky Dancers are thinking — gee I knew that Romney would bring up the ghost of the Kenyan father but isn’t this way too soon?

    • dakinikat says:

      We’ll probably get the angry troll patrol from those old folks who said they were actually Democrats supporting Hillary that are comfortably home with the Tea Party Racist elements and Princess Dumbass of the North … we’ll undoubtedly need a shovel to clean up the place again … they seem to think that Willard is a ‘moderate’ and are being deliberately obtuse about any information to the contrary

      • ANonOMouse says:

        “We’ll probably get the angry troll patrol from those old folks who said they were actually Democrats supporting Hillary that are comfortably home with the Tea Party Racist elements and Princess Dumbass of the North … we’ll undoubtedly need a shovel to clean up the place again”

        Oh, no, please save us from the ratfucker trolls! 🙂

        • dakinikat says:

          Sheesh, even the Brits are saying the comment was racially tinged.

          Mitt Romney’s campaign has been forced to deny that it believes the Republican challenger would be better placed than Barack Obama to handle the relationship between the US and the UK because of his “Anglo-Saxon heritage”.

          As Romney began an international trip with a visit to London, an unnamed campaign advisor was quoted by the Daily Telegraph as saying he “part of an Anglo-Saxon heritage”, adding that “the White House didn’t fully appreciate the shared history we have”.

          After the racially tinged comments were condemned by Democrats, Romney’s press secretary, Andrea Saul, said they did not represent his views.

      • Yeah, I think you may be right Dak…get ready for it.

      • RalphB says:

        Screw the ratfuckers if they can’t take a joke.

      • NW Luna says:

        The British press are far more outspoken than the cowed US press.

      • NW Luna says:

        And Willard is a “moderate” only on the tyrant scale.