December 26th, 2008
03:10 PM ET
12 years ago

RNC chair candidate sends out controversial Obama song

(CNN) - A candidate for Republican National Committee chairman said Friday it was clear the content of a CD he sent committee members for Christmas - that included lyrics from a song called “Barack the Magic Negro” - was intended as a joke.

“I think most people recognize political satire when they see it,” Chip Saltsman told CNN. “I think RNC members understand that.” Saltsman, a former chair of the Tennessee Republican Party, was a top advisor to former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, and managed former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee’s presidential campaign.

The song, set to the tune of “Puff the Magic Dragon,” was first played on Rush Limbaugh’s radio show in 2007. Its title was drawn from a Los Angeles Times column that suggested Obama appealed to those who feel guilty about the nation’s history of mistreatment of African-Americans. Saltsman said the song, penned by long-time friend Paul Shanklin, should be easily recognized as satire directed at the Times.

The parody CD sent to RNC members this Christmas, first reported by The Hill Friday, is titled “We Hate the USA”, and includes songs referencing former presidential John Edwards and the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, among other targets.

Filed under: Chip Saltsman • RNC
soundoff (376 Responses)
  1. Doug

    it looks like the RNC is going to get uglier and even more irrelevant before they get their 'stuff' together. it might be a long wait. we deserve better discourse.

    December 26, 2008 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  2. Cheryl from MN

    And it doesn't surprise me that a racist like Rush Limbaugh would play such a tune on his radio show.

    December 26, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  3. Shedric

    "A candidate for the RNC chair". Does he represent the qualities that the RNC wants to promote to the public?

    December 26, 2008 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  4. What on Gods Green Earth!?

    has become of the GOP ? (once beloved , now run by?.......animals)

    This is disgusting

    December 26, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  5. heartlight3

    They do stupid stuff like that and then they wonder why they lose elections. The may think derogatory songs about democrats are a joke, but it is not funny. Humor that degrades another person is sick, not funny.

    December 26, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  6. May

    This is just sad.

    December 26, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  7. Sharon from Dumfries Virginia

    Satire my butt, that is not funny or okay.

    December 26, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  8. Bill in JAX

    If the Republican Party and its inept leadership would dedicate more attention to bringing this country together, and cease its incessant fostering of racial and religious divisiveness, then perhaps this country can survive perhaps the single worst presidency in our history.

    December 26, 2008 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  9. Big Kal

    And you wonder why the election was lost. Satire or not it's these type of things that keep minorities and women from wanting to join your party.
    It's going to take some magic from this "Negroe" to undo the 8 years of damage brought on by "Ali Baba" and his 40 thieves oh I mean George Bush. Keep your party and your song and just remember this – the minority has become the majority in this country. The RNC has some serious soul searching to do if they are going get back there swagger. What happened to the GOP the party of Lincoln? The big tent they talked about in past conventions? The tents seem more like white hoods on all of you so called elitist and socialites. You ignorant fools have hijacked a once reliable and trusted brand and turned it into a den of thieves.

    December 26, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  10. Sharon, Minnesota

    Oh them silly republicans, they are so funny.

    December 26, 2008 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  11. Sandra, Atlanta

    If you think this is political satire, then this guy is one sick individual! Another reason I don't think I will vote for a republican again in my lifetime. I guess my sense of humor is lacking for this guy and Rush Limbaugh's 'political satire'.

    December 26, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  12. Minnesota

    Always from a Republican. The party of hate and fear and bigotry.

    Just once wouldn't it be nice to see that the GOP could tolerate more than just these racist bad jokes and groups of former KKK members and the like.

    Tolerance is an amazing quality unless its selectively applied. Like, only tolerating hate groups and racist organizations.

    December 26, 2008 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  13. Philadelphian trapped in Texas

    Wouldn't touch this piece of ethnic humor with a 10 foot polack.

    December 26, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  14. BB

    Sophomorish activities of the repubicans.

    December 26, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  15. Dieter Zerressen, Denver, CO

    Why is this such a mystery that the basis of the Republican Party are the racists, separatists, white supremacists, KKK, under educated, single wide trailer livin' white trash? That is their constituency. Throw in some greedy Wall Streeters and tax cutting loving over-paid CEO's and there you have it – 33% of the population.

    December 26, 2008 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  16. BB

    Sophomoric activities of the repubicans.

    December 26, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  17. shirley

    I do not shock that easily, but i gasped when I read this article.That is about as ignorant, and bigoted as I have ever seen. Satire my foot.
    I can only speak for myself but, I voied for Obama because he was obviously the smartest candidate with the best ideas, and obviously does his homework. If I were a Republican, I would crawl into a hole and never admit that I had been stupid enough to vote for Bush, Mc Cain,Pain, Cheney and Rove.. Feel guilty... my foot! I am also not surprised that it would first be heard on Rush Limbaugh show.
    McCain and silly Palin were no comparison. WE GOT OBAMA AND BIDEN. Thank you God.

    December 26, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  18. Rich

    I truly wish I could say I'm shocked by this but I'm all! Just when I didn't think they could sink lower.....

    December 26, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  19. davinder

    If RNC members understand that humor, then they are racists. Pretty simple really. I guess this guy is just stating a fact. The problem is, apparently, he sees nothing wrong with it.

    December 26, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  20. ay_lamb

    outrageous republicansatzgrupen continue to display their true character and why you might ask? Because they no in this current American sociological climate we have reverted to a time when intolerance isn't just en vogue it actually makes you poplular.

    December 26, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  21. Tom in CA

    Chip - you've just confirmed that you're a joke! The RNC is a joke!

    Go home RNC bigots!

    December 26, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  22. Cam, Atlanta


    I wonder if Clarence Thomas and Michael Steele received a copy?

    Last time I checked, Obama has White blood running through his veins as well.

    However I guess the RNC figured it would be much funnier to exclude the part that is like them and heckle the "Black" part. because to the RNC to be Black is funny and White is not.

    December 26, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  23. Rae


    December 26, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  24. (Former) Lifelong Republican for Obama, Columbia, TN

    This is exactly why I am no longer a Republican and why the GOP will never secure the respect they once had. This is so sad!

    December 26, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  25. al in memphis

    This comes from a person who wants to lead the RNC. This will stay around a very long time.
    It's sad to think that someone thought others would find this funny and appealing. I wonder if this will get as much time as Rev Wright did on Fox News.

    December 26, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
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