Roger L. Simon

Harry Reid's not a racist; he's a hack

I’m not particularly interested in the controversy being generated by the supposedly racist comments from Harry Reid quoted in the new book Game Change. It’s just another dopey remark by a politician. But watching the Senator’s response to the brouhaha on the Hugh News reminded me of just what a creepy individual Reid is. He trumpets all his “black friends” – just as people did forty or fifty years ago under similar allegations – and defends himself as a great civil rights advocate by pointing to how he tried to integrate the “gaming industry,” as in, “Some of my best friends are black croupiers.” Yup… as we all know… the Majority Leader of the US Senate’s most significant background seems to be as a staunch supporter of professional gambling.

Now I have nothing against wagering, have even tried it a time or two myself, but for the Majority Leader to cite integrating the gaming industry for his civil rights bona fides is really pathetic sign of the sleazy times in which we live. And it’s typical of the man. For a long while, Reid has been an embarrassment, making back room deals and now leading the charge on health care behind firmly closed (hermetically sealed?) doors. He’s everything we despise about politicians and has always made me think of the G. D. Spradlin character (Senator Pat Geary) in Godfather II. Now he’s something of a joke, but the trouble is the joke is on us. If this man is reelected, it’s a mockery of our democracy.