Rep. Mark Meadows insisted during the Cohen hearing that he is not a racist, but video shows him pushing racist rhetoric and conspiracy theories.
Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) angrily denounced criticism of a racist stunt he pulled during the House Oversight Committee testimony of Michael Cohen. But the congressman has a history of racist comments that make his supposed outrage look phony and contrived.
Attempting to defend Trump from Cohen's description of him as racist, Meadows placed HUD official Lynne Patton, who is a black woman, next to him like a prop. Without having Patton speak, Meadows said her role in Trump's campaign disproved the charge.
Rep. Ayana Pressley (D-MA) first pointed out how disingenuous Meadows' argument was by asking Cohen about Trump's documented history of racism.
"Would you agree that someone could deny rental units to African Americans, lead the birther movement, refer to the diaspora as shithole countries and refer to white supremacists as fine people, have a black friend, and still be racist?" she asked.
Cohen replied, "Yes."
Later, Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) directly called out Meadows' stunt: "It is insensitive that some would even — the fact that someone would actually use a prop, a black woman, in this chamber, in this committee is alone racist in itself."
Meadows angrily demanded that Tlaib's comment be struck from the record, arguing that it was a personal attack against him. He noted that he has black nieces and nephews, and cited his relationship with Committee Chair Elijah Cummings (D-MD), who is black, as evidence that he isn't racist.
But there are multiple instances of Meadows being racist that have been caught on video.
Meadows, like Trump, supported the racist conspiracy theory that falsely alleged that President Barack Obama was not an American citizen.
Campaigning in 2012, Meadows told rally attendees, "2012 is the time we are going to send Mr. Obama home to Kenya or wherever it is."
Meadows repeated the racist comment at a tea party event in North Carolina. At the same event, he promised attendees that he would pursue an investigation of Obama's birth certificate (like Trump did at the time).
What Meadows did at the hearing with Patton was a racist act. It comes from a man with a history of racism who was defending Trump, a noted racist.
Reps. Tlaib and Pressley were accurate when they called him out for his actions. Meadows' track record shows that his protestations were the equivalent of crocodile tears and don't change what he did or his sordid history.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.