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Could Sean Hannity’s Bigoted Double Standard Be Any Plainer Here?

Reported by Ellen - August 7, 2008 -

Any doubts that Sean Hannity has a bigoted double standard would have to be dispelled in last night's (8/6/08) Hannity & Colmes segment in which he hypocritically attacked Barack Obama for “playing the race card” and yet warmly received a guest’s comment that most blacks in Tennessee are racists living in the 50’s and 60’s. Updated: Memphis primary results prove otherwise. With video.

The segment in which this occurred was about the racial mud-slinging going on in a Memphis Democratic primary. A white man being racially attacked by a black woman? Hannity, the former chum of white supremacist Hal Turner, could not resist, especially if there was an opportunity to smear Barack Obama as a racist, too.

The Obama “link” was the Cavuto mark of a question, “Some are now asking, should Obama step in?”

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson, an African American described by journalist Max Blumenthal as a “front man for a murky, well-funded network of white nationalist activists” was the conservative guest. Peterson frequently makes outlandish accusations of racism against African Americans on Hannity & Colmes. There could be no doubt what kind of commentary he’d offer.

Sure enough, Peterson immediately launched a racial attack. In his first comment, Peterson said, “Most blacks, not all but most in Tennessee, especially in the Memphis, Tennessee area, are still living in the 50’s and 60’s. They are so racist that they don’t even realize that white Americans have moved on. And so whenever there’s a campaign like this, such as this, they always use racism in order to intimidate white America.”

The other guest, Jacques DeGraff, was outraged and objected to Peterson’s statement but Hannity refused to allow him to make his point. Instead, Hannity moved on and used the issue to tar Obama as a racist for not condemning the black woman’s questionable attacks on the white incumbent.

In a not-so-subtle effort to paint Obama as a racist, Hannity said in his bullyboy sing-song, “If (Obama) uses the words, ‘Oh, by the way, they’re going to try and make you fear me. After all I’m black.’ That’s not playing the race card?”

Peterson compliantly answered, “Barack Obama’s not going to say anything because – well, first of all Steve Cohen (the white incumbent) endorsed Barack Obama before this black woman did. But because this woman is black (and) she’s a Democrat, he’s not going to say anything for fear of losing the black vote, so it’s more about race than anything else.”

Hannity again refused to allow DeGraff to voice his objections.

The bullyboy voice was gone now, despite the fact that Peterson had just played a much bigger race card than Obama supposedly had. Now Hannity deliberately prodded Peterson to make a racist attack on Obama by asking if he had played the race card “from the bottom of the deck.”

“Without a doubt, it is the race card,” Peterson answered. “It works for black liberal Democrats because they have managed to intimidate white Americans. Barack Obama understands that this will work. You have to remember that Barack Obama sat under one of the most racist preachers in America, teaching black liberation theology for 20 years. So he had to be doing that because he agreed with it.”

Peterson went on to falsely accuse Obama of speaking at The Million Man March. “Let’s not forget Louis Farrakhan. He spoke at his rally. So it is about race and Barack Obama understands that.”

Hannity knows full well that Obama did not speak at the Million Man March. But he did not correct the record. And Hannity still did not mind that Peterson had just played a race card against Obama. Instead, Hannity reached across the table, shook his head and said fondly, “Jesse, good to see you in the studio. Appreciate it.”

UPDATE: Peterson's comments were proven wrong by the results of the primary in which Steve Cohen, the white incumbent, won 80 percent of the vote, sweeping all demographic categories. To date, there has been no repudiation of Peterson's comments on the show.