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Illinois Senator Barack Obama (D-13th), who hosted WVON's Cliff Kelley Show, challenged the Republican Party to repudiate Lott's remarks and to call for his resignation as senate leader.
"It seems to be that we can forgive a 100-year-old senator for some of the indiscretion of his youth, but, what is more difficult to forgive is the current president of the U.S. Senate (Lott) suggesting we had been better off if we had followed a segregationist path in this country after all of the battles and fights for civil rights and all the work that we still have to do," said Obama.
He said: "The Republican Party itself has to drive out Trent Lott. If they have to stand for something, they have to stand up and say this is not the person we want representing our party."
"Harry Reid called me today and apologized for an unfortunate comment reported today. I accepted Harry's apology without question because I've known him for years, I've seen the passionate leadership he's shown on issues of social justice and I know what's in his heart. As far as I am concerned, the book is closed."
Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) in 2002 agreed with former Sen. Trent Lott's (R-Miss.) decision to resign his leadership role after Lott made what some felt were racist remarks at former Sen. Strom Thurmond's 100th birthday party.
"He had no alternative," said Reid at the time claiming, "If you tell ethnic jokes in the backroom, it's that much easier to say ethnic things publicly. I've always practiced how I play."
Originally posted by Ferris.Bueller.II
"I know what's in his heart.