“This is just so unprecedented and so outrageous that you have to ask the question: would the rightwing be doing this if we had a white president there? The fact that the first African-American president…
I think it’s a very important question because I think that this is the first African-American president, and we’ve never had a white president been told by the opposing party to shut up in the middle of a major address to Congress. We’ve never had a president heckled so disrespectfully. We’ve never had this otherness afforded to any other president.
And I think the rightwing is going to have some explaining to do, because to me, it seems patently obvious.”
“The term illegals, I think, is coded. It’s in a way derogatory, it may be factual, but I think he’s going to have to pivot off of that kind of rhetoric and then say to Hispanic Americans I will represent you too.”
“Jefferson Sessions—I said it right this time. I didn’t say Jefferson Davis. He’s a Confederate Attorney General. And as John Lewis said so aptly the other day, [Jeff Sessions] can be nice and friendly, but we know what his policies have meant and what he’s been up to throughout his tenure, so I think we do have to be very concerned about that.”
“That stuff is incredible. He [Obama] is their president, Joy [Reid]. I mean, it’s not even thinly veiled racism at this point.”
“Some of the right, even Scott Brown up in N.H. is talking about Islamic terrorism. They always throw in the world Islamic making an ethnic thing. He said I’m not going to let it become an ethnic thing. It’s the terrorism I’m against not Islam. Made that point strong.”
“Overall, Republican policies are targeted to hurt minority Americans. Paul Ryan’s budget hurts. Their actions hurt.
…I do believe that the conservatives in this country continue to fuel racism by their policies that attack minorities in this country and try to keep the working folk down. It emboldens people who are in power to say what they say with absolutely no responsibility whatsoever. Kids are watching. They’re listening. What kind of example are we setting?”
“Why is Senator Rand Paul saying this about our first black president? Here’s the Kentucky Republican in a New York times interview.
Quote, ‘the first African-American president ought to be a little more conscious of the fact of what has happened with the abuses of domestic spying. Martin Luther King was spied upon. Civil rights leaders were spied upon. Muhammad Ali was spied upon. Anti-war protesters were spied upon.’
…who is Rand Paul to make this point? A cynical use of race from some on the right. When the president talked about being sensitive to issue of race, like he said after the Trayvon Martin verdict, the right attacks him for it. But it’s interchangeable. They attack him for not talking about issues of race too. And when Rand Paul talks about being conscious of race when it comes to spying, what about Condoleezza Rice? She works for President Bush known for surveillance of U.S. citizens and where does he get off talking about race in civil rights at all. This is a man that once said he would have modified the civil rights act if he had been a senator at the time.”
“I want to talk today about a controversial word. It’s a word that has been with us for years. And like it or not, it’s indelibly printed in the pages of American history. A word that was originally intended as a derogatory term, meant to shame and divide and demean. The word was conceived of by a group of wealthy white men who needed a way to put themselves above and apart from a black man. To render him inferior and unequal and to diminish his accomplishments.
President Obama has been labelled with this word by his opponents. And at first he rose above it, hoping that if he could just make a cause for what he achieved, his opponents would fail in making their label stick. But no matter how many successes that he had as president, he realized there were still many people for whom he’d never be anything more than that one disparaging word. A belief he knew was held not just by his political opponents, but also by a significant portion of the American electorate.
And so he decided, if you can’t beat them, you’ve got to join them. And he embraced the word and made it his own, sending his opposition a message they weren’t expecting — ‘if that’s what you want me to be, I’ll be that.’ Y’all know the word that I’m talking about. Obamacare. That’s right! I said it and I’m not ashamed and neither is President Obama. Because he knows that of all his victories over two terms in office his legacy is ultimately going to be remembered for this one single word.
I mean, what do you call the president who rescues the U.S. auto industry?Obamacare. What do you call the president who finally eliminates Osama bin Laden? Obamacare. What do you call the president who ends Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell? Say it with me! Obamacare.
Heard the one about the president who pulled us out of the greatest recession since the Great Depression? Yep. Obamacare. And what about the one, you know, about the president who reduced drug sentencing disparities? Obamacare. Stop if you have heard this one. A group of underpaid women and the president, who passed the pay equity law, walk into a bar — okay, so you can see where I’m going with this.
Short of bringing about world peace before he leaves office, the Affordable Care Act will loom large in the president’s legacy as the singular accomplishment of his two terms. And now following the relaunch of the new and improved and fully operational Healthcare.gov website, the president is not only owning it, but doubling down and putting a great spotlight on the Obama in Obamacare.”