But don’t worry, Carson says he wasn’t talking about the entire Tea Party, just the bitter clingers.
LOS ANGELES (CNN) — As members of the Congressional Black Caucus converged in Los Angeles for its final national job fair series, one of its ranking members responded to his own previous inflammatory comments in Miami about the tea party, comparing their movement to Jim Crow laws that segregated and marginalized African Americans in society.
A video surfaced Tuesday on TheBlaze.com, a website run by conservative host Glenn Beck, that shows Rep. Andre Carson, D- Indiana, who holds a leadership role in the CBC, at an August 22 event in Florida.
“Some of these folks in Congress would love to see us as second-class citizens. Some of them in Congress right now of this tea party movement would love to see you and me . . . hanging on a tree,” Carson said, according to the audio.
On Wednesday, Carson told CNN he stood by those remarks.
“Well, I wasn’t talking about the entire tea party. I think the tea party is absolutely right when they call for increased transparency in government, when they call for a cutback on excessive government spending. I am deeply concerned about some elements of the tea party who are extremist and who have reflected a mentality going back to the John Birch society, going back to George Wallace’s Dixiecrats,” Carson said.
Tea party officials have previously renounced characterizations that their movement is racist. Carson said he believes the vitriolic political environment has encouraged increased attacks on minority groups. . . .
“I stand on the truth of what I spoke,” he said. My intentions weren’t to hurt anyone or any group. I wanted to speak to the issues that concern me and the philosophical issues that concern me as it relates to certain leadership within the tea party organization, not the entire tea party, but certain elements that have concerned me deeply and for quite some time that I think should really re-evaluate what it means to be an American and we shouldn’t go along the path of taking America back to the ‘good old days’ because those days were not good for everyone.”
This is the second time today Carson has defended the indefensible.