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Boggs McDonald plays race card, draws Democrats' fire
Las Vegas Review Journal ^ | 09/25/04 | ERIN NEFF

Posted on 09/25/2004 8:24:26 AM PDT by nypokerface

The politics of race flared up in Lynette Boggs McDonald's Clark County Commission race this week in an unusual way: as a result of the black commissioner's own comments likening Democrats' treatment of blacks to slavery.

Boggs McDonald, a former Democrat who has held local offices as a Republican since 1999, was quoted in Thursday's Las Vegas Sun as saying she regrets having been a Democrat.

"From my perspective, there is one last plantation in America, and it's called the Democratic Party," Boggs McDonald said.

In an interview Friday, the commissioner said she was simply trying to explain her beliefs that Democrats take black voters for granted and offer them little in the way of policies that improve their lives. She said that blacks have the same statistical percentage of the nation's wealth today as they did after the Civil War.

"One party believes they're owned, and that's the Democratic Party," Boggs McDonald said. "My party doesn't do enough, but at least it doesn't presume that African-Americans are along for the ride. I have always earned my votes from African-Americans."

On Friday, about 20 black Democrats, including fellow black commissioner Yvonne Atkinson Gates, called upon her to apologize and called the plantation comment "divisive."

"It's self-hatred," Atkinson Gates said during a news conference in front of the Martin Luther King statue at the entrance to a county government complex at Martin Luther King Boulevard and Carey Avenue.

Atkinson Gates, who chairs the Democratic National Committee's Black Caucus, said she hadn't wanted to get involved in the election between Boggs McDonald and Democrat David Goldwater, but said Boggs McDonald made "the worst comment I have ever heard from anyone in the black community."

"All this does is pit brother against brother, sister against sister," Atkinson Gates said. "Comments like these appeal to the worst in humans."

Steven Horsford, Nevada's Democratic national committeeman, said he believes his party stands for "hope, opportunity and justice for every American, not just for the rich."

"If she really believes in what she says, then she really needs to question the party she belongs to," said Horsford, who is black and who won the Democratic primary in Senate District 4.

Boggs McDonald stands by her comment and said she sees no need to apologize for her characterization of a rival political party.

"The bottom line for me is that votes need to be earned. They're not owned by anyone," Boggs McDonald said. "It's very easy to throw a press conference and not talk to the cold-hearted truth of race in politics."

She said she is only being criticized for challenging the status quo.

"Whether it's Bill Cosby or myself, if you say something contrary to what the popular line is, there is going to be reaction," she said.

Boggs McDonald, 41, made an unsuccessful bid for Congress in 2002 and is involved in the Bush-Cheney campaign, serving on a steering committee for women and speaking on behalf of the ticket at events, including first lady Laura Bush's rally in Las Vegas earlier this year.

The Bush-Cheney campaign and black Republicans have been courting black votes by condemning the policies of the Democratic party.

A new 60-second radio ad targeting black voters and running in Nevada and other battleground states includes a black woman who says: "I realized I'm tired of being taken for granted by John Kerry and his allies in Congress."

Alan Keyes, a black candidate for the U.S. Senate in Illinois, also uses the plantation analogy.

Horsford said he believes it is part of a Republican strategy to suppress black votes that by a large majority are cast for Democratic candidates.

"At the Democratic National Convention ... one of the training sessions demonstrated how the Republican party is using black candidates to try to quell the vote," he said.

Cornell Clark, a black Republican running for the state Assembly, said it is difficult to campaign in the black community.

"One of the most resistant groups to vote for a black Republican are the black Democrats," said Clark, a candidate for Assembly District 6.

Though Clark could not comment specifically on Boggs McDonald's statement, he said, he believes that both parties are guilty of racial politics to some extent.

"Republicans don't pay enough attention to African-Americans," Clark said, "but the Democratic party has thoroughly taken African-Americans for granted."

Goldwater said Boggs McDonald could have made a similar point by using a less pointed analogy.

"Those are the politics of division, and it's certainly not what we need in this community," said Goldwater, a five-term assemblyman. "She uses old cliches and hurtful cliches that old, hard-core Republicans have always used. It shows that she's not of her own mind."

Boggs McDonald said she thought of the analogy on her own and has the right to speak her mind. She also said she was unaware the plantation phrase had been used by other Republicans in reference to the Democratic party.

"I have no problem treading where no Republican has tread before," she said. "Lynette Boggs McDonald goes to labor unions and knocks on the doors of Democrats. It was just an analogy I used based on my own experiences."

Rainier Spencer, chairman of the Afro-American Studies Department at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, said he believed Boggs McDonald's statement, while "extreme," raises a legitimate question about how the Democratic party treats blacks.

But when politics center on race, "There's just a big dance every time this happens."


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Politics/Elections; US: Nevada
KEYWORDS: clarkcountynevada; liberalplantation; localpolitics; nevada; racialpolitics

1 posted on 09/25/2004 8:24:26 AM PDT by nypokerface
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To: nypokerface
"Republicans don't pay enough attention to African-Americans," Clark said, "but the Democratic party has thoroughly taken African-Americans for granted."

Absolutely correct on both accounts.


$710.96... The price of freedom.
VII-XXIII-MMIV

2 posted on 09/25/2004 8:27:02 AM PDT by rdb3 ("The Republican Party is the ship and all else is the sea." ---Frederick Douglass)
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To: nypokerface

----hopefully, this articulate black lady has a great future in Nevada politics----she has one most unusual feature--she's honest----


3 posted on 09/25/2004 8:27:16 AM PDT by rellimpank
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To: nypokerface

A black Republican being blamed for playing the race card, beam me up, what planet are these fools living on?


4 posted on 09/25/2004 8:29:15 AM PDT by Mister Baredog ((Part of the Reagan legacy is to re-elect G.W. Bush))
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To: nypokerface

Wonder how she's going to do? The black Republicans in the article do make a good point - it seems easier to persuade a white suburban voter to vote for you than someone of your same race who lives in the inner city.


5 posted on 09/25/2004 8:29:36 AM PDT by ClintonBeGone (Take the first step in the war on terror - defeat John Kerry)
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To: nypokerface

No wonder the Dems are upset. They're the only ones allowed to talk about race.


6 posted on 09/25/2004 8:30:59 AM PDT by Colonel_Flagg (This is no time for ease and comfort. It is the time to dare and endure. Sir Winston Churchill)
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To: nypokerface



"At the Democratic National Convention ... one of the training sessions demonstrated how the Republican party is using black candidates to try to quell the vote," he said.

Unlike the democrats, black republicans are not puppets.


7 posted on 09/25/2004 8:33:45 AM PDT by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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To: nypokerface
"From my perspective, there is one last plantation in America, and it's called the Democratic Party,"

BINGO

8 posted on 09/25/2004 8:36:18 AM PDT by SmithL (Vietnam-era Vet - Still fighting Hillary's half-vast left-wing conspiracy)
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To: rdb3

"Those are the politics of division,"

That statement is the politics of Rats, when they're called on being Rats.


9 posted on 09/25/2004 8:59:41 AM PDT by LibertarianInExile (The Fourth Estate is the Fifth Column.)
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To: SmithL

Meanwhile, the other twenty continue stepping and fetching for boss man Kerry.


10 posted on 09/25/2004 9:00:45 AM PDT by LibertarianInExile (The Fourth Estate is the Fifth Column.)
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To: rdb3
The Democrats in Washington represent the "typical" white liberal who thinks that being politically correct around people who are Black--or in P-C-ese, African-American--is enough to prove they aren't racist. But when it comes to putting their kids where their mouths are, they would be "shocked, I say--shocked" by any suggestions that they are hypocrites for not putting their children in public DC schools.

To me it is very telling that the Clintons put Chelsea in private school, but the Bushes put their twins in Houston area public schools. I know this may be a minor point, but I believe a major statement is made by Cabinet members Rod Paige, Condi Rice and Colin Powell. And I don't think anyone, with any good sense, would call them "house--uh--inhabitants"!

BTW, how would a career in politics sound to you, rdb3?

11 posted on 09/25/2004 9:16:42 AM PDT by Zellenn
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To: Zellenn
BTW, how would a career in politics sound to you, rdb3?

It sounds extremely scary. And I don't scare easy, so that should say something.


$710.96... The price of freedom.
VII-XXIII-MMIV

12 posted on 09/25/2004 10:13:37 AM PDT by rdb3 ("The Republican Party is the ship and all else is the sea." ---Frederick Douglass)
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To: mhking
Ping

LBMcD strikes a blow!

13 posted on 09/25/2004 10:27:37 AM PDT by JohnnyZ ("The common man doesn't look at me as some rich witch." --Teresa Heinz Kerry)
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To: nypokerface

Is Lynette Boggs-McDonald given a good chance of winning this election?


14 posted on 09/25/2004 10:44:08 AM PDT by Clintonfatigued
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To: Clintonfatigued

Lynette is a smart, good gal, I worked for her a little on her congressional campaign. She also has a great voice and can sing, amazingly enough.


15 posted on 09/25/2004 11:24:47 AM PDT by FastCoyote
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To: rdb3

Hear you!


16 posted on 09/25/2004 11:52:16 AM PDT by Zellenn
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To: rdb3

I opened this page a few minutes ago and my PC froze up. The RATS smell defeat.


17 posted on 09/25/2004 11:57:14 AM PDT by John Lenin
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