It’s unexpected, but even Karl Rove is discouraging Republican attack dogs from throwing around Barack Obama’s middle name. No less an authority
February 27, 2008

It’s unexpected, but even Karl Rove is discouraging Republican attack dogs from throwing around Barack Obama’s middle name.

No less an authority figure than Karl Rove has warned Republican operatives from demagoguing Barack Obama’s middle name.

At a closed door meeting of GOP state executive directors in late January, Rove said the safest way to refer to Obama would be to use his honorific, “Sen. Obama.”

“The context was, you’re not going to stigmatize this guy. You shouldn’t underestimate him,” one of the executive directors said. Rove said that the use of “Barack Hussein Obama” would perpetuate the notion that Republicans were bigoted and would hurt the party.

Rove’s remarks come just one day after John McCain said he believes use of “Hussein” is inappropriate.

It’s unlikely the party’s far-right base is going to listen to either of them. Indeed, the Republican Party of Tennessee already seems anxious to reinforce the notion that Republicans are bigoted and don’t care whether it hurts the party or not.

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