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Washington Post reporter Eugene Scott questioned who Sen. Tim Scott’s, R-S.C., target audience was during his rebuttal to President Biden’s joint address to Congress on Wednesday, telling his followers it’s “worth paying attention to the demographics.”
To make clear he was referring to race, Scott added in a later tweet, “I was on @ZerlinaMaxwell’s show earlier today noting that his primary audience is not Black people — and certainly not Black people left of him. Never has been. And I don’t think it ever will be.”
Republlicans largely praised Sen. Scott for his deeply personal speech about why he’s conservative and how his family rose from “cotton to Congress” over the generations. Radio hosts Mark Davis and Jason Kantz say the Post’s Scott went too far with his “garbage” take.
NewsBusters managing editor Curtis Houck wrote Eugene Scott was implying Sen. Scott was trying to “please all those evil, white racists.”
The trend “Uncle Tim” began trending on Twitter during the senator’s speech, an obvious nod to the literary figure Uncle Tom, referencing a Black man who is eagerly subservient to White people.
Sen. Scott said that while he’s experienced racism throughout his life, even in the halls of Congress, he still believes that America is not a racist country. CNN commentator Van Jones took issue with that statement and said he likely just lost millions of possible Black supporters.
Other media pundits and social media users agreed with Jones, but Vice President Kamala Harris appeared to take the side of the Republican senator on ABC News on Thursday, albeit with a caveat.
“First of all, no, I don’t think America is a racist country, but we also do have to speak truth about the history of racism in our country and its existence today,” Harris said. “It does not help to heal our country … to ignore the realities of that.”
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