Mar 142005

People who support George W. Bush’s plan to privatize Social Security have all sorts of ways to describe people who don’t: Opponents of Bush’s plan are "in denial, "have their heads in the sand" or have "divorced themselves from reality." But now the president himself has a new way of describing his political opponents: They’re racist.

When Bush’s Social Security road show pulled into Kentucky Thursday, the president suggested that opposition to his privatization plan was based on the notion that some minorities can’t be trusted with their own money. "Oh, I know they say certain people aren’t capable of investing, you know, ‘the investor class,’" Bush said. "It kind of sounds like to me, you know, a certain race of people living in a certain area. I believe everybody’s got the capability of being in the investor class."

It’s also not the first time that Bush has tried to insert race into the Social Security debate. Bush has argued that Social Security short-changes African-Americans and that his privatization plan will sets matters right. But in suggesting last week that his opponents were racist, the president seems to understand that he’s gone too far. A day after he made his remarks, Bush appeared at several more Social Security rallies, but he was careful to keep race out of his remarks. In a stop in Memphis Friday, Bush said "You know, there’s kind of this notion that there is an investor class in America. That sounds a little limited to me, that only a certain number — certain type of person can invest. I don’t subscribe to that notion."

A "certain type" of person? Anyone who heard Bush speak but didn’t know the history must have wondered what "type" of person the president had in mind.

All of this from the person who is NOT a divider. I’m just waiting for Karl to figure out how to play do some gay baiting around Social Security. Expect that when the race card doesn’t take off.

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