Lazy Matthews: Pro-Gun Conservatives Are Segregationists, Just Like Anti-Tax Segregationists

Perhaps, it would be easier to ask Chris Matthews what isn't like being an old segregationist? Two weeks ago, the Hardball host compared anti-tax conservatives to "being the most segregationist guy in the south." On Thursday, Matthews suggested it was pro-Second Amendment conservatives who fit the description.

The cable anchor opened his show by blasting, "It used to be that the only way to get elected in the old Dixiecrat south was to be the farthest out there in backing segregation. Anyone who showed moderation was seen as soft." Making his comparison clear, Matthews sneered, "Well, to win in today's Republican Party, which began displacing the Dixiecrats a half century ago, you have to be the farthest out there backing guns." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]

The MSNBC host whined, "Show moderation, you get your NRA badge ripped off you. Agree to any rule on gun safety and you're marked as a traitor for life."

Two weeks ago, on January 3, Matthews discussed conservatives, taxes and the 2012 election with journalist Howard Fineman. He made the exact same comparison:

MATTHEWS: It's today's politics! It's like, they used to say, you have to be the most segregationist guy in the south. You can never be an inch away from it because somebody would always go to your right on that issue.

Perhaps one day Matthews could compare segregationists to their actual party? Democrats.

A transcript of the January 17 show open is below:


5:01

CHRIS MATTHEWS: Good evening. I'm Chris Matthews in Washington. Let me start tonight with this. It used to be that the only way to get elected in the old Dixiecrat south was to be the farthest out there in backing segregation. Anyone who showed moderation was seen as soft. Anyone who talked compromise on civil rights was suspected of being on the other side.

Well, to win in today's Republican Party, which began displacing the Dixiecrats a half century ago, you have to be the farthest out there backing guns. Show moderation, you get your NRA badge ripped off you. Agree to any rule on gun safety and you're marked as a traitor for life. Well, it's not just the back benchers, today some of the top people in the Republican Party, the people to watch, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz are right out there front in opposing President Obama on gun safety. So what happened? Why is the GOP the party of guns over people?

Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center and a contributing editor for NewsBusters.org