Of course, there is a third possibility, both.
The NAACP under the guidance of Ben Jealous had emerged as a forceful race card player directed at conservatives in general, and the Tea Party movement in particular.
In July 2010, the NAACP Passed a “Tea Party Is Racism” Resolution, and Tim Scott was in the lead in opposing the NAACP:
Tim Scott, the Republican candidate for Congress is South Carolina, who is black and has strong Tea Party support, also understands what this is all about:
“I understand that the NAACP, at its annual conference in Kansas City, will vote today on a resolution condemning the Tea Party movement as “racist”. I believe that the NAACP is making a grave mistake in stereotyping a diverse group of Americans who care deeply about their country and who contribute their time, energy and resources to make a difference.”
“As I campaign in South Carolina, I participate in numerous events sponsored by the Tea Party, 9/12, Patriot, and other like-minded groups, and I have had the opportunity to get to know many of the men and women who make up these energetic grassroots organizations. Americans need to know that the Tea Party is a color-blind movement that has principled differences with many of the leaders in Washington, both Democrats and Republicans. Their aim is to support the strongest candidates – regardless of color or background – who will fight to return our country to its Constitutional roots of limited government, fiscal responsibility, and free markets.”
The NAACP followed up its “Tea Party is Racism” resolution by entering into a joint venture with Media Matters and Think Progress, TeaPartyTracker.org”. The website ostensibly was to track Tea Party racism, but that was not the real purpose. The real purpose was to further media narrative of Tea Party racism regardless of the facts.
This publicity stunt was a charade there was no Tea Party racism to track, and the website was shut down. But the mission was accomplished because it furthered the leftist attack narrative.
Jealous made headlines this past week by accusing Tim Scott of not supporting civil rights:
Scott has responded with class:
Tim Scott has a history of standing up to the NAACP’s attempt to demonize the Tea Party, and it’s hard to believe that there wasn’t some measure of payback motivating Jealous.
But then again, people like Jealous reserve their most vicious accusations for conservative Republicans who happen to be black. So maybe it was just Ben Jealous being jealous of an American success story which did not emerge from the NAACP or the welfare state.
One good upside of preparing this story is that I found this profile of Scott when he was running for Congress: