"McConnell refuses to denounce Tea Party racism: ‘I am not interested in getting into that debate.’"
Today on CNN’s State of the Union, host Candy Crowley asked Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) about the NAACP’s resolution calling on the Tea Party movement to condemn the “racist elements” in its ranks. McConnell, however, brushed aside accusations of racism, saying he’s “got better things to do”:
CROWLEY: Well, as you know, this weekend, NAACP said that the tea — there are racist elements in the tea party.
MCCONNELL: I am not interested in getting into that debate. What we are interested in is trying to have an election this fall that will respond to what the American people are asking us to do, which is to have some checks and balances here. [...]
CROWLEY: Nothing that you have seen on TV, including some of the signs that we’ve seen, albeit the minority at some of these tea party rallies, some of the posters that have been put up in the name of some factions of the tea party make you the least bit uncomfortable?
MCCONNELL: Look, there are all kinds of things going on in America that make me uncomfortable, both on the right and on the left. I have got better things to do than to wade in to all of these disputes and discussions that are going on out in the country. What we are trying to do is to make the president a born again moderate. We are trying to send enough conservatives to Congress this November to move him in a different direction.
Last year, McConnell was quick “to heap the most fulsome praise” on the Tea Party protests while “bashing the media” for portraying the protests unfavorably. Today on CBS’s Face the Nation, TeaParty365 co-founder David Webb said that the National Tea Party Federation “expelled” Mark Williams and his Tea Party Express “in the last 24 hours” for his “clearly offensive” satirical letter saying “coloreds” supported slavery.