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Buchanan: Sotomayor Must Have Been An ‘Affirmative Action’ Nominee Since No White Men Were Finalists

By Amanda Terkel on May 27, 2009 at 4:32 pm

"Buchanan: Sotomayor Must Have Been An ‘Affirmative Action’ Nominee Since No White Men Were Finalists"

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Today on MSNBC, right-wing pundit Pat Buchanan attacked Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor as an “affirmative action candidate.” He was unable to cite any evidence that she was unqualified, instead pointing to the fact that President Obama’s top four candidates for the spot were women. Because there were no white men in the final round, Buchanan was convinced that the whole selection process was rigged.

Host Norah O’Donnell pointed out that women have also been left out of serious consideration in the past and maybe “there weren’t any white men who were qualified” who were qualified this time. Buchanan responded that she was being bigoted. When guest Lawrence O’Donnell asked him if he would have been similarly outraged if it had been all men — and no women — as finalists, Buchanan avoided the question:

BUCHANAN: Look, are you going to let me talk, Lawrence? You got down to four women, not a single white male — all women.

NORAH O’DONNELL: Did it ever occur to you, Pat, that maybe there weren’t any white men who were qualified?

BUCHANAN: Yes. No, it did not occur to me. You mean there are no white males qualified? That would be an act of bigotry to make a statement like that. [...]

LAWRENCE O’DONNELL: Well Pat, if it gets down to four, you’re suggesting it’s an absolute outrage if the final four are women. If got down to final four and they were all white men, would that bother you in the least?

BUCHANAN: I don’t say it’s an outrage, I say it’s affirmative action. They were picked because she’s a woman and a Hispanic and you know it as well as I do.

Watch it:

We can always count on Buchanan to advocate in favor of a system that guarantees advantages for white men. With his arguments that slavery was a good thing for black people (“It was here that 600,000 black people, brought from Africa in slave ships, grew into a community of 40 million”), wishing for a country where whites comprise 89 or 90 percent of the population, or saying that Hispanics “do not wish to assimilate,” Buchanan has little credibility left on issues of what is fair on race and gender.

“It’s like watching a dead fish flop around on the deck,” said Lawrence O’Donnell at the end of the segment. “You’re dead on this one, Pat. It’s all over.”

Transcript:

BUCHANAN: Look, are you going to let me talk, Lawrence? You got down to four women, not a single white male — all women.

NORAH O’DONNELL: Did it ever occur to you, Pat, that maybe there weren’t any white men who were qualified?

BUCHANAN: Yes. No, it did not occur to me. You mean there are no white males qualified? That would be an act of bigotry to make a statement like that.

NORAH O’DONNELL: In the past there have been no women that have been qualified.

BUCHANAN: They certainly have been qualified in the past. I don’t doubt that they are. But probably half of the great lawyers and judges are white males in this country. To rule them out, why? Because of sex and because of their race is wrong, I think. At least it’s affirmative action.

NORAH O’DONNELL: I don’t think you have proof that they did that. The President reportedly —

BUCHANAN: How did he come down to four women?

NORAH O’DONNELL: He said that they were the best and met the views that he had, the particular criteria.

BUCHANAN: In other words what were the criteria? One it’s got to be a woman, the other it’s an Hispanic — that’s affirmative action.

NORAH O’DONNELL: Lawrence, do you want to offer a rejoinder to that?

LAWRENCE O’DONNELL: Well Pat, if it gets down to four, you’re suggesting it’s an absolute outrage if the final four are women. If got down to final four and they were all white men, would that bother you in the least?

BUCHANAN: I don’t say it’s an outrage, I say it’s affirmative action. They were picked because she’s a woman and a Hispanic and you know it as well as I do. [...]

LAWRENCE O’DONNELL: Hopeless argument, Pat. It’s like watching a dead fish flop around on the deck. You’re dead on this one, Pat. It’s all over.

BUCHANAN: If we’re held now, we’d be goners. But I’ll tell you this — let me bet, I’ll disagree with Joe, there will be more than 15 votes against her. If more comes up, there will be more votes. This just started.

LAWRENCE O’DONNELL: Wow, wow. Fifteen.

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