Senate Republicans celebrated the 150th anniversary of President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination with a bizarre tweet that seems to celebrate Lincoln’s murder.
“150 years ago today, the first Republican President, Abraham Lincoln was assassinated,” the tweet reads. “America is forever indebted.”
While it was obviously an error on the part of the six chipmunks that were dancing on the keyboard of whichever intern was responsible for the tweet, let’s face it: It’s not entirely an inaccurate statement for a party that believes the Civil Rights Act was a bad thing.
Twitter immediately jumped on the Senate GOP for this bafflingly stupid tweet:
While they issued no apology, the Senate GOP issued a clarifying tweet almost a half-hour later:
Many did not quite “buy” what they considered a weak clarification — and who can blame them? GOP presidential candidate Rand Paul hired this guy, and defended him after he was outed as a white supremacist shock jock:
Lincoln suspended habeas corpus and imprisoned thousands upon thousands of newspaper editors, judges, politicians, and any other citizens, public or private, who dared to get in his way. Conducting the first “total war” of the modern era — in which Lincoln’s armies intentionally targeted innocent women, children, and old men in the South — was nothing less than an act of “genocide” against Southerners. There is nothing even remotely comparable in the actions of Confederate President Jefferson Davis or even Southern leaders like Robert E. Lee to the fascist tactics of Lincoln.
Nevertheless, Paul stood by his precious Southern Avenger.
“I’m not a fan of secession,” Paul said in 2013 after Hunter’s secret identity was uncovered. “I think the things he said about John Wilkes Booth are absolutely stupid. I think Lincoln was one of our greatest presidents. Do I think Lincoln was wrong is taking away the freedom of the press and the right of habeas corpus? Yeah.”
“There were great people who were for emancipation. Lincoln came to his greatness. One Republican congressman described it as ‘on borrowed plumage.’ I love the description, because there were some great fighters [for emancipation] and Lincoln had to be pushed,” he continued. But I’m not an enemy of Lincoln, like some who think he was an awful person.”
Though Hunter expressed horrific viewpoints, Paul continued to defend him. “People are calling him a white supremacist,” Paul explained. “If I thought he was a white supremacist, he would be fired immediately. If I thought he would treat anybody on the color of their skin different than others, I’d fire him immediately.”
“All I can say is, we have a zero tolerance policy for anybody who displays discriminatory behavior or belief in discriminating against people based on the color of their skin, their religion, their sexual orientation, anything like that,” Paul said. “We won’t tolerate any of that, and I’ve seen no evidence of that.
“Are we at a point where nobody can have had a youth or said anything untoward?” Paul asked. Hunter was 39 years old when Paul asked this question, and the writing regarding Lincoln was not even five years prior.
Few Republicans would commit political suicide by publicly condemning Lincoln, but was this an accidental moment of honesty from a party that longs for the “good old days?”
h/t: Freak Out Nation
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.