January 10th, 2010
11:14 PM ET
5 years ago

Congressional Black Caucus backs Reid

(CNN) – As first reported Sunday evening by CNN Political Editor Mark Preston, the Congressional Black Caucus has accepted Sen. Harry Reid’s apology for remarks he made about President Obama's race and is dismissing calls for him to step down as majority leader.

See full statement below:


Sunday, January 10, 2010

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Washington D.C. – Today Rep. Barbara Lee, Chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus issued the following statement in response to Republican demands that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid step down:

“I have had an opportunity to speak with Senator Reid and he apologized for his unfortunate remarks concerning the President and he understands the gravity of such remarks. There are too many issues like the economy, job creation and energy for these regrettable comments to distract us from the work that must be done on behalf of the American people.

“Over the years, I have had an opportunity to work with Majority Leader Reid.  Senator Reid’s record provides a stark contrast to actions of Republicans to block legislation that would benefit poor and minority communities – most recently reflected in Republican opposition to the Health Bill now under consideration.  I look forward to Senator Reid continuing to serve as Majority Leader to guide this important agenda through the Senate.

“The Congressional Black Caucus believes that thoughtful engagement and civil discourse on race is needed, as our first “Dialogue on Race” in November 2009 demonstrated.  There is a deep unease about race which cannot be swept under the rug.  I appreciate Senator Reid’s apology and look forward to our continuing work.”

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soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. Dennis in AZ

    The CBC is totally Liberal–of course they back Reid! Michael Steele made a good assessment about the Librocracy of Racism–if a conservative says it–it's racist. If a Liberal says it–it's an honest mistake? Go figure.

    January 10, 2010 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  2. terry,va

    Sure the Black Caucus supports Reid. He is carrying their and Obummie's socialist policies. They would drop him in a heart beat if he wasn't. Reid is done in November anyway. Everyone knows that. Obummie is just hoping he can bribe enough Senators to go along with the socialist policies until then. Reid is a chump for going along but I guess he thinks Obummie will save him. No way, no how!!!

    January 10, 2010 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  3. Kevin

    As an African American, I don't see what was wrong with his statement to begin with.

    Truth be told, the Republican Party have done MORE harm than good to honest, loyal, hard working African American.

    Cases in point:

    1. The 2000 Presidential Election, in which the RNC systematically RAILROADED

    January 10, 2010 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  4. Tony T

    "actions of Republicans to block legislation that would benefit poor and minority communities"..... Do I read that, WELFARE STATE? Or REDISTRIBUTION OF WEALTH? Keep going GOP, jobs are the answer not socialism. Instead of welfare make these people work in the community. Free Obama money just makes for more lazy unproductive people waiting for some handouts. Darn, the congress is the worst ever. November cannot come fast enough. Hopefully Mass. is mad enough and chooses wisely next week, vote Brown and stop the insanity.

    January 10, 2010 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm |
  5. J Jenkins

    As a Black American , I believe Senator Reid knows how White Americans think. The president is half white and speaks without a Negro dialect. He is very educated. There are many Black Americans that are very articulate, educated and very capable of holding an important office.
    I am not mad at Senator Reid.

    January 10, 2010 11:41 pm at 11:41 pm |
  6. Rob

    Is there a Congressional White Caucus, Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Congressional Asian Caucas, Congressional Male Caucus, Congressional Female Caucus, Congressional GLBT Caucus, Congressional Whatever Caucus? Why do African-American representatives and senators believe they need to have a "black" caucus? Is their caucus "open" to whites, asians, hispanics, indians, and other races, including blends, or is it for "blacks" only? What about biracial or multiracial members of Congress? Can they caucus with their black peers, or is their an ethnicity-race restriction that excludes those blacks want to keep out? In summary, if you want to talk about racism in America, why not start with the Congressional "Black" Caucus? You'll find it at every meeting they hold.

    January 10, 2010 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  7. ThinkAgain

    "There are too many issues like the economy, job creation and energy for these regrettable comments to distract us from the work that must be done on behalf of the American people."

    I completely concur with Rep. Barbara Lee, Chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus. Thank you, Madam Chairwoman!

    January 10, 2010 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  8. Michael from Ventura

    Gotta luv those gopers! They sure know their racism don't they!? What hypocrits!! Anyone who takes them serious has major "issues".

    January 10, 2010 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  9. terry,va

    Barbara Lee and Reid should do a rap song.
    Give me your money, you working fools.
    You know we are tools.
    But hey, you elected us to represent and you get what we say.
    At least for today.
    When and if you wise up, it might not be so.
    But until then you can just go blow!!!!
    .

    January 10, 2010 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  10. Scott Alexander

    If the CBC accepts Reid's apology, then this should be the end of the discussion.

    Reid should not cave into the hypocrites in the GOP – the party that as everyone remembers, has been against Civil Rights for decades (or at least has never condemned those in its ranks who are publicly active against it).

    I think Reid's as spineless as the other Democrats who haven't helped this country when we've given them the power to help. However, giving into pressure like this is only going to allow the Republicans to take control (even more) since they'd be getting their way (even more).

    If you're going to resign Reid, at least do it on your own terms. Nobody's going to remember you for setting an example. It's not as if a Republican who ever does the same thing is ever going to resign (they could care less about being bad – history has proven that).

    January 10, 2010 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  11. lalita

    The news & republicans keep trying to keep this going but we {blacks) understand what Reid said. It is not a bid deal at all.

    January 10, 2010 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  12. MatthewDetroit

    That is because the congressional black caucus is a bunch of idiots..

    They talk about racism and Reid is a Racist.

    But it is pretty funny that no matter what as long as he sticks up for welfare programs and the like they will back him.

    No matter how dirty his heart is they will back him.

    It is called PLANTATION mentality and they want to be taken care of, instead of given the tools to succeed on their own.
    Too Bad. You ruin a people and another generation with welfare....

    January 10, 2010 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  13. Jay in DC

    As a black man that grew up in DC I would first like to ask the question who is the Congressional Black Caucus? Secondly who do they represent because its sure is not the majority of black Americans. Lastly I a Democrat and very Liberal, but I will be the first to agree with Michael Steele in calling for Sen Harry Reid's resignation.

    January 10, 2010 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  14. I believe

    I agree.. I as a black man forgive you Reid.. your doing alot of good now for all races.. keep up the great work...now lets move on with the peoples business. lets get the healthcare bill pass.. the wall regulations, create some jobs, etc.. Lets shut those REPUBLICONS up.

    January 11, 2010 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  15. nathan

    Why are Americans so afraid of the truth when it comes to race. Of course some white voters are more comfortable with a light skinned black than a dark skinned one. Every group talks a liitle different when they are around their kind than when out in the public. The GOP lead by its resident boy Steele is trying to make political hay out of this. Steele is the same guy who got the job of RNC chairman for being the whitest black man on the planet and then got lambasted by his own party for making comments that some people might considered talking to "his people". This mans hipocrisy n\knows no boundaries.

    January 11, 2010 12:08 am at 12:08 am |
  16. jon

    Well said, democrupt Senator Reid. That was really true no one dares to say. If it was not for the Affirmative action policy, Obummie would not have been elected with such scany achivements he achieved.Can't wait 2012!

    January 11, 2010 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  17. Bubble of Sanity

    How sweet and forgiving of them. In other words, they are willing to sell out their own people for a cheap political move. I know what they would have said if any Republican had said half of what Harry said.

    This caucus has no right to be representing African-Americans. They do not represent mainstream African-American views, and have no loyalty to their own cause.

    What right do they have to tell Harry Reid "No harm done?" For whom do they speak?

    January 11, 2010 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  18. Liberals are just plain stupid!

    What else can one possibly conclude?

    January 11, 2010 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  19. Mike in TX

    How stupid can the Repubs get. They only complain and do not help do anything positive. They are worthless and should be voted out. I am voting straight Dem ticket and hope you do too for the good of our country. "We have no need for Repub greed. They lie as if we are dumb enough to belive it.

    January 11, 2010 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  20. JB - FL

    hypocrites....all Trent Lott did was try to give Strom Thurman (Democrat) a jokingly nice compliment at his 100 BDay party "When Strom Thurmond ran for president, we voted for him. We're proud of it. And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn't have had all these problems over all these years either."

    They can SOMEHOW make this racism, but when Reid specifically talks about "skin" color and "negro" dialect....it isn't.....AMAZING!

    January 11, 2010 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  21. Biased

    Do we even have to be told that democrats will support their own.? Sort of a waste of space to even mention that they would do otherwise. I just feel sorry for all the other African Americans who aren't Obama who perhaps have darker skin or don't speak so eloquently knowing that if they ever aspire to run for office or reach for a higher office they might not meet the democratic stereotype of who they would support or would be more electable in their eyes.

    January 11, 2010 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  22. Rob in Detroit Mi.

    The Republican Party thought they had something not, they ended up looking stupid, thanks to the Black caucus.

    January 11, 2010 12:32 am at 12:32 am |
  23. Showtime - Tampa

    hypocrites....all Trent Lott did was try to give Strom Thurman (Democrat) a jokingly nice compliment at his 100 BDay party "When Strom Thurmond ran for president, we voted for him. We're proud of it. And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn't have had all these problems over all these years either."

    They can SOMEHOW make this racism, but when Reid specifically talks about "skin" color and "negro" dialect....it isn't.....AMAZING!

    January 11, 2010 12:37 am at 12:37 am |
  24. tippy calif

    Why do we have this racist group in the congress, we should have nothing that smacks of race . Congressional Black Caucus sure
    does sound like a racist group to me

    January 11, 2010 12:37 am at 12:37 am |
  25. Albert K. L.A., CA

    Harry Reid’s words were a positive assessment on how far America has come since the Civil Rights Acts of the 1960’s. To make such an assessment before Obama was elected proves Reid had faith in the voters of America; that they have overcome. Obama becoming President proves Reid was correct. Reid’s words cannot be interpreted as a negative view upon Black Americans because he was talking about the outcome of a future election which depends upon the outlook of a majority of voters of all colors, not the ability of any one minority group. The reason Republicans are acting so upset is because they have nothing else to stand on other than the hope they get from misreading reality and pretending their Party is not falling apart before their eyes. They lost in 2008 because they moved too far to the Right and now as Palin and others move further to the Right they are trying to purge the Party of the reasonable members in the center. The Party (Republican Party) is over!

    January 11, 2010 12:38 am at 12:38 am |
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