The Washington Post

NAACP leader likens black GOP senator to ventriloquist’s dummy

Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.). (Grace Beahm/AP)

An influential leader of the NAACP in North Carolina recently compared Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.), the lone black Republican in Congress, to a ventriloquist's dummy.

"A ventriloquist can always find a good dummy,” the Rev. William Barber said about Scott during remarks in Columbia, S.C., on Sunday, according to The State.

Barber added that “the extreme right wing down here (in South Carolina) finds a black guy to be senator and claims he’s the first black senator since Reconstruction, and then he goes to Washington, D.C., and articulates the agenda of the Tea Party.”

Scott was appointed to the Senate by South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) in late 2012, following Jim DeMint's (R-S.C.) resignation.

Barber is an emerging figure in North Carolina politics. As head of the state's NAACP, he recently joined other black leaders and Democrats in calling for North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R) to call an earlier special election for former congressman Mel Watt's (D-N.C.) seat.

Barber has been particularly active on issues of voter ID, denouncing conservatives in the North Carolina state legislature for passing new regulations.

Update 2:08 p.m.: Scott's response is below:

"To reflect seriously on the comments a person, a pastor that is filled with baseless and meaningless rhetoric would be to do a disservice to the very people who have sacrificed so much and paved a way. Instead, I will honor the memory of Dr. King by being proactive in holding the door for others and serving my fellow man. And Rev. Barber will remind me and others of what not to do."

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Video curated for you.
Next Story
Aaron Blake · January 21, 2014

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.