- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 19, 2002

Former President Bill Clinton said yesterday incoming Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott's remarks about Sen. Strom Thurmond are just a public manifestation of a Republican strategy to suppress black voters and appeal to whites on a racial basis.
"He just embarrassed them by saying in Washington what they do on the back roads every day," Mr. Clinton told CNN outside a business luncheon he was attending.
"How do they think they got a majority in the South anyway?" he said. "I think what they are really upset about is that he made public their strategy."
He added: "They try to suppress black voting, they ran on the Confederate flag in Georgia and South Carolina, and from top to bottom the Republicans supported it."
But Republican National Committee Chairman Marc Racicot said Mr. Clinton "ought to know better."
"This is another tired example of Bill Clinton misrepresenting the facts and misleading the American people to gain political advantage," Mr. Racicot said in a statement.
Mr. Racicot did not mention Mr. Lott in his response, saying instead that President Bush is committed to improving minorities' lives through his education and homeownership policies and his faith-based initiative.
"President Bush is supported by a party that is committed to his principles and ideals and has worked tirelessly to bring new faces and voices not only into the Republican Party, but into the political process," Mr. Racicot said.

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