Bush’s New USAID Nominee: Hispanics Are ‘Lazy’

henriettamint3.jpg President Bush plans to nominate Henrietta Holsman Fore to head the U.S. Agency for International Development “to replace Randall Tobias who resigned after his name was linked to an escort service.”

Fore is currently the State Department undersecretary for management. When Bush nominated her for this position in 2005, ThinkProgress noted that Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) grilled Fore over her previous comments in which she suggested blacks prefer pushing drugs on the street to working in factory jobs.

Fore’s remarks came from a speech she gave at Wellesley University in 1987. Here’s how a Feb. 12, 1987 New York Times article covered that speech:

A Wellesley College trustee’s remark that blacks preferred pushing drugs to working in a factory has precipitated an emotional debate on this bucolic campus already grappling with charges of racial insensitivity

The trustee, Henrietta Holsman, a 1970 graduate of Wellesley who runs a manufacturing concern in Los Angeles, resigned from the board last weekend after apologizing for her comments, which also cast aspersions on the work ethic of Hispanic and white employees. But in a letter to the college newspaper, Ms. Holsman reiterated her statement that she had trouble keeping black assembly-line workers from going “back to the street to earn more money” selling drugs

In her lecture, Ms. Holsman also said she had found Hispanic workers to be lazy, white workers resentful of having to work with machines, and Asians, while very productive, likely to move on to professional or management jobs.

In a July 13, 2005 letter, Fore promised Obama that she “would work with the Congressional Black Caucus and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus in identifying the best practices that can be used to strengthen diversity in the State Department” [AP, 7/19/05]

But as Raw Story reports, CBC members confirm that the committee has not had any contact with Fore in the past two years. Although Fore met with Latino legislators on two occasions, the content of the meetings was not disclosed. Additionally, the “State Department’s own accountability reports show little change in the make up of the workforce since Fore took over in 2005.”

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