What at first appeared to be a ripple in the water is turning into a tsunami. The Washington Post reports this morning that Lott said of Strom Thurmond:
You know, if we had elected this man 30 years ago, we wouldnt be in the mess we are today."
No, this wasnt at Stroms 100 birthday party. It was at a campaign speech in 1980 in Jackson, Mississippi. Those who read this blog will note that I was willing to chalk up his comment at Stroms party to the words of a thoughtless sycophant (although I still was in favor of ousting him for general incompetence), but the fact that he said virtually the same thing 22-years ago is disturbing, and suggests that this comment gives us a window into the mans mind. And the window does not provide a pleasant view.
With this revelation, it is surely time for Lott to "step down" (with the able assistance of Mr. Rove) as Majority Leader. The difficulty will be, as Masugi noted, making sure that the public understands that this is being done for the right reasons. It should not be an homage to those who play racial politics, but must be a clarification that the party of Lincoln still stands for the basic principle of human equality--and that those who pay honor to political systems which do not respect these principles should not and will not lead that party.