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Politics : PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH -- Ignore unavailable to you. Want to Upgrade?


To: Baldur Fjvlnisson who wrote (346043)1/22/2003 3:52:16 PM
From: JakeStraw  Respond to of 769618
 
Rep. King: Clinton's Race Record Worse Than Lott's

New York Congressman Peter King charged Sunday that former President Bill Clinton's poor record on civil rights while he was governor of Arkansas includes episodes of support for racial discrimination that were "far beyond anything that Trent Lott ever did."

Asked about recent criticism from both the ex-president and New York Sen. Hillary Clinton that the GOP has pandered to racist whites in the South, the Long Island Republican told WABC Radio's Steve Malzberg:

"Certainly to see him and Hillary Clinton in the last few weeks criticizing, not just Trent Lott but the entire Republican Party - saying how our philosophy is based on racism and all that nonsense - and then, realizing what his record was in Arkansas, I mean - there's a list with Bill Clinton that's far beyond anything that Trent Lott ever did."

Asked how the press was able to ignore Clinton's history of Voting Rights Act violations and racial profiling in Arkansas through two presidential campaigns, King explained: "All I can say is, you know, the focus is on different issues at different times. Back in 1992, Bill Clinton was very cleverly able to put all the focus on the economy. ... And also, the negative attention on him involved Gennifer Flowers and all those stories."

In her 1998 memoir "Lift Every Voice," former Clinton Justice Department Civil Rights Division nominee Lani Guinier revealed that the ex-president's record on race as governor of Arkansas was so bad she was compelled to take legal action. "As a staff lawyer for the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, I had sued Gov. Clinton over Arkansas's deputy voter registration statute," Guinier recalled.

Asked by NewsMax in late December about the NAACP lawsuit, Guinier - now a professor at Harvard University - confirmed that "Clinton was sued in his official capacity as governor," but declined to provide further details.

But in a story first reported by NewsMax last month and completely overlooked by the big media, local Arkansas press reports in the late 1980s painted an ugly picture of the Clinton administration's attempts to intimidate black voters.

In the 1989 NAACP lawsuit, "the evidence at the trial was indeed overwhelming that the Voting Rights Act had been violated," reported the Arkansas Gazette (which later became the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette) on Dec. 6, 1989.

"Plaintiffs offered plenty of proof of monolithic voting along racial lines, intimidation of black voters and candidates, other official acts that made voting harder for blacks," the Gazette said.

A federal three-judge panel ordered Clinton, his attorney general, Steve Clark, and his secretary of state, William J. McCuen, to draw new boundaries to give maximum strength to black voters.

"Until last year," the Gazette complained at the time, "in more than a thousand legislative elections, the [Arkansas] delta region sent not one black to the legislature. Last year, the federal district court split a multimember district in Crittenden County that had submerged the large number of black voters in the county."

In other past reports overlooked by the press during the Trent Lott fiasco, the Washington Times and the Associated Press had detailed Clinton's history of support for racial profiling in Arkansas, as well as a U.S. Supreme Court verdict sanctioning him for attempting to replace a duly elected black state representative with a white Democrat.

With his comments to WABC Radio on Sunday, Rep. King becomes the first elected official to break the mainstream media's information embargo on Clinton's racial record in Arkansas since the former first couple began criticizing Republicans as racist.


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