Al Sharpton and Rachel Maddow had an explosively caustic argument with former Newt Gingrich spokesman Rick Tyler about the candidate’s approach to race on Tuesday night, in which Tyler himself used some very dicey rhetoric about African Americans.
Both MSNBC hosts had previously excoriated Gingrich for calling President Obama the “Entertainer In Chief” and telling him to “stop singing” during his speech just after his loss in the Florida primary, saying that he was attempting to tap into racial animosity from white conservatives. Maddow took that concern directly to Tyler, who batted it away.
“MSNBC ought to get off this race baiting kick,” he said, adding that the Republican Party has a “proud history” of fighting for civil rights going back to the Civil War.
“What about tonight?” Maddow asked. She pointed to Gingrich calling Obama “the food stamp president” and saying he wanted to get “black people” off of food stamps, telling Tyler, “there is a pattern here of, I think, obviously racially coded language that has nothing to do with the parties and the Civil War.”