Comments: Bush declines NAACP invitation

I have raised questions about whether is as much a bid by the NAACP to retain relevance as well as an attempt to seem non-partisan (at least enough so they keep their tax free status).

Posted by Joel (No Pundit Intended) at July 8, 2004 04:22 PM

They made the offer and Bush turned them down. Because they made the offer, to him and some other Republicans I am told, they get to keep the status.

Reagan went.
Bush, Sr. went.
Gingrich went.

Frankly, I think it's a punk move for any politician to not face a so-called "hostile" audience.

Posted by DarkStar at July 8, 2004 10:23 PM

You know, everytime President Bush has a press conference, he faces a hostile audience. Remember the reporters asking him repeatedly if he was going to apologize for 9/11?

Why should the President of the United States feel obligated to play games with partisans? He answers to the American people, not to the NAACP.

Posted by Joel (No Pundit Intended) at July 8, 2004 10:59 PM

Dark Star,

Bush is not going to the NAACP convention for a reason.

Back in 2000, he went to the convention in New Orleans, gave a speech, and went away. He knew that the NAACP was going to give Al Gore all the props they could for the campaign. That's fair.

What he didn't anticipate was that the NAACP would buy time in Texas to run an ad that virtually accused then Governor Bush of complicity in the death of James Byrd, a citizen of his state. Bush's Texas DLE had captured the assailants, and at the time of the campaign, they were sitting on Death Row.

That ad was beyond the pale; the day they ran it was the day the NAACP stopped being "non-partisan", if it ever was.

Bush has told the NAACP to kiss his ass, and that is all to the good.

Posted by Section9 at July 8, 2004 11:12 PM

I agree with Dark Star that a politician should be brave enough to go before hostile crowds but, as Joel says, he does that any time he has a news conference. Bush isn't obligated to provide raw footage of himself getting hooted down to the Kerrion for their campaign ads. Let the NAACP come off their high horse and maybe the President can pencil them in. Next year.

Posted by Toby Petzold at July 9, 2004 02:29 AM

The NAACP has yet to boo any Republican who addressed the group.

Posted by DarkStar at July 9, 2004 09:19 AM

Darkstar,

A group doesn't have to boo somebody to be overtly hostile, and the NAACP is not entitled to have the President address them just because they invited him. I find the President's willing to hold somebody accountable for their actions refreshing. It would be the height of hypocrisy for President Bush to go and address the NAACP after the partisan hyperbolic crap they dished his way. Maybe the NAACP ought to be asking themselves why it is a President feels no desire to come speak with them?

Posted by TL at July 9, 2004 06:32 PM

Why should Bush bother? The NAACP has made it very clear that they are only interested in this as a "photo-op" chance to rail at Bush in front of news cameras.
Having the President speak in front of your private-interest pressure group is a privelige, not a right. You're ASKING FOR A FAVOR.
Call someone a nazi and a evil goon often enough and he loses interest in you. Publicly support his enemies often enough and he loses the belief that you are anything other than a tool of his enemies. The ABA found this out in 2001. The NAACP will be getting very short shrift in the next four years, and they have earned it. Besides, just what exactly are thay going to say about him that they haven't said already?

Posted by DaveP. at July 10, 2004 02:13 AM

In 2003, the NAACP's Julian bond also pledged to have the organization work to defeat Bush in 2004. Isn't that a pretty relevant point?

Posted by Patterico at July 10, 2004 05:20 PM

If Bond said that, and said it speaking for the NAACP proper, then the group should have it's status yanked if they follow though.

I hate to be technical about it, but the NAACP didn't do the Byrd ad. A _partisan_ entity "spun off" from the NAACP did the ad. Of course, it was still way over the line.

The NAACP leaders -- meaning the leaders of the NAACP -- have shot themselves in the feet by allowing themselves to be tied so closely to Democrats.

As for Bush holding people accountable, are people going to hold Bush accountable for now supporting the idea of condom use to "fight AIDS"?

Posted by DarkStar at July 11, 2004 11:42 AM

The ads were paid for by Americans for Equality, a project of the NAACP National Voter Fund. I don't see the distinction, and I doubt many others do either.

Posted by Patterico at July 11, 2004 01:47 PM

The distinction is purely legal: the entity that paid for it isn't a non-profit or not-for-profit organization.

Posted by DarkStar at July 11, 2004 04:28 PM

But does the distinction stand up to scrutiny? If it's a "spin-off" then isn't this exalting form over substance? Where did this organization get its money from?

Posted by Patterico at July 11, 2004 05:08 PM

If what I read is accurate, they brought some mailing lists from the DNC and raised money that way.

Posted by DarkStar at July 11, 2004 07:08 PM

well first of all Fuck bush, He obviously went in 200 to gain votes and now that he got them there is no reason to come back, did you know that bush is the first president since hoover to decline naacp all 4 years. Bush is screwing us all, and now he doesn't even have to abide by the US constitution, i bet you fucks love the patriot act. its so patriotic.

Posted by fuckbush at July 12, 2004 01:27 AM

When you are running for office or running to stay in office, you have a responsibility to address all groups and answer all questions. If you are honest and believe in your policies and goals for the country and your acconplishments, you should not be afraid to deliver your message in front of any group. this is how you gain votes, by speaking to non-supporters. I believe Bush wil pay for not appearing by losing many votes. Fear of embarassment for current policies and actions and having to face the truth about his administration has got him in hiding. Shame on him.

Posted by Belinda at July 12, 2004 11:20 PM

Belinda,

This is why John Kerry will be making a round of speeches to purely conservative groups explicitly opposing his candidacy this election season.

Right?

The first time he does that -- even once -- you be sure and let me know.

Posted by Patterico at July 13, 2004 01:02 AM
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