On Monday morning, the Democratic National Committee released this video of President Obama drumming up support for Democrats ahead of the midterm elections. The president appeals directly to "Latinos," "African Americans" and "women" in language Politico's Ben Smith called "unusual" for its "demographic frankness." Later on, right-leaning blogger Matt Drudge published the screaming headline "OBAMA PLAYS RACE CARD: RALLIES BLACKS, LATINOS FOR '10 UPSET." For a number of conservatives who read the site, Drudge's editorializing didn't sit well. Liberals, meanwhile, slammed Drudge for misconstruing a simple plea to constituents.
- The Race Card? asks conservative Ed Morrissey at Hot Air: "It’s not exactly playing a 'race card,' which usually means some claim of either victimization or super-credibility for a particular argument, but it’s a little more frank than usual about the motives of political organizations. No one doubts that both parties approach electoral politics on the basis of demographics; both Democrats and Republicans make quite a show of it, especially when talking to groups that find their basis on ethnicity or religion. What they normally don’t do is frame it in such an exclusionary way as Obama does in this video."
Has a Point, insists neocon Jennifer Rubin at Commentary: "So
much for the post-racial presidency. We are back to naked pleas for
racial solidarity. This comes from a man who told us that there were no
Blue States or Red States, and that we should stop carving up the
electorate into ethnic and racial groups. It was moving and appropriate
and now it’s inoperative."
- Confirms a Lot About Conservatives, writes Greg Sargent at The Plumline: "Many on the left have argued that the far right’s obsession with ACORN (a Breitbart specialty) and alleged 'voter fraud' is, on a fundamental level, really an effort to delegitimize Dem minority outreach in general. Now Drudge has basically confirmed this."
- 'When George W. Bush Spoke in Spanish to Latino Voters Was He "Playing the Race Card?"' asks Joe Gandelman at The Moderate Voice: "Where did it suggest he is planning to play a 'race card'? ...If a party or candidate holds a rally trying to get those voters they are playing the race card? If the Republicans in coming months feel they may have lost ground with Hispanic voters on the new immigration law and move to try to mend fences is that 'playing the race card?' 'Playing the race card' has had an entirely different meaning than how it is implied here. But that’s how the bar is lowered on our political discourse: meanings are changed (or jettisoned) for political expediency. When George W. Bush spoke in Spanish to Latino voter was he 'playing the race card?'"
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.