Last year, former Florida Republican Party Chairman Jim Greer — who has been ostracized by the GOP after he was charged with defrauding the party — accused President Obama of using his annual back to school message to preach “socialist ideology” to children. But in a statement Monday — perhaps feeling freer to express his true views after breaking with the party — Greer apologized for his 2009 charge, saying he felt the need to “placate the extremists.” He also said he has “found that many within the GOP have racist views:”
“In the year since I issued a prepared statement regarding President Obama speaking to the nation’s school children, I have learned a great deal about the party I so deeply loved and served,” Greer’s Monday statement said. “Unfortunately, I found that many within the GOP have racist views and I apologize to the President for my opposition to his speech last year and my efforts to placate the extremists who dominate our Party today. My children and I look forward to the President’s speech.”
Greer declined to name names, but said, “I had to discipline state members who promoted racists [sic] comments.” “It is not my belief that the Republican Party as a whole or even a majority of Republicans have racist views,” Greer elaborated on Tuesday. “I just believe there are some in the party that don’t think minority outreach should be a priority, that moving in that direction doesn’t help the party because it encourages more minorities to vote,” he explained. Greer added that as chairman, he had “to keep certain segments of the party happy,” and that he worries “there is no place for moderates in the Republican Party” today.