In the zeal to lash out at the right, the left itself abuses truth, justice and the American Way.
Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) is a pro-gun, pro-fossil fuels Conservative “family values” politician who votes along party lines, against almost every initiative of a Democratic president. There are many reasons to despise his politics.
But on the GOP ideology spectrum, where the creepy, crawly Ted Cruz (Tx.), Marcia Blackburn (Ky.), Rick Scott (Fla.), Tom Cotton (Ark.), James Lankford (Okla.), James Inhofe (Okla.), Mike Braun (Ind.) and Kevin Cramer (N.D.) represent the fascist, Christian Nationalist vanguard, measured by their voting records, Cassidy is in the least rabid one third of his caucus.
In the second impeachment trial, he voted to convict Trump. He’s part of the problem, but he’s not the problem.
So then last week Cassidy was caught in a Politico interview making an ill-considered observation. Confronted with the alarming fact that Louisiana ranks 47th of 48 states measured for maternal mortality, in a country that as a whole ranks among the worst nations in the developed world, Cassidy tried to contextualize the horrendous statistic:
About a third of our population is African American; African Americans have a higher incidence of maternal mortality. So, if you correct our population for race, we’re not as much of an outlier as it’d otherwise appear.
Say what? It’s only because we have so many damned Black women. I mean, it’s not like their lives count as much as White women. Is that what he said?!
No. That is not what he said. He was, clumsily, trying to contextualize a disturbing fact. Maternal deaths for Black women are 33% higher than those for White women nationwide. And Louisiana has a much larger percentage of Black citizens (31.4%) than the national average (13.4%). And so, he was saying, a higher maternal mortality rate among Black women is epidemiologically and demographically predictable. Shameful. But predictable.
But that interpretation wasn’t quite incendiary enough. So here was how Vanity Fair reported his remarks.