Should Reid be allowed to remain as Majority Leader, there will no doubt be those who complain that there was a double standard, citing Trent Lott ouster as Majority Leader when he infamously said that America would have been better off if Strom Thurmond had been elected president in 1948. The circumstances are slightly different in this case. Most people interpreted Lott comments to mean that he supported the segregationist platform Thurmond ran on that year. Despite the fact that Reid used an antiquated, even controversial term to describe blacks, one cannot infer from his comments that he supports segregation (though his comments do evince a classism for certain types of blacks who remain marginalized in American society). If Reid comments had approximated the bitter tone of Geraldine Ferraro assertion that Obama won the Democratic nomination because he was black, then Reid would almost certainly be in more trouble. But because the comments don appear to be malicious, the trajectory of this story will be no different than Joe Biden and clean gaffe in 2008, which didn stop him from becoming Vice President.
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