A candidate for the Republican National Committee chairmanship is trying to explain why he included a song titled “Barack the Magic Negro” on a CD that he sent to committee members as a Christmas gift.
As previously reported, the song, set to the tune of “Puff the Magic Dragon,” was first played on conservative political commentator Rush Limbaugh’s radio show in 2007 and was drawn from a Los Angeles Times column that suggested President-elect Barack Obama appealed to those who feel guilty about the nation’s longtime mistreatment of African-Americans.
Tennessee Republican Chip Saltsman, who sent the CD to RNC members, said the song was clearly intended as a joke. “I think most people recognize political satire when they see it,” he told CNN. “I think RNC members understand that.“
Saltsman said the song, penned by his longtime friend Paul Shanklin, should be easily recognized as satire directed at the Times. The CD, first reported by The Hill on Friday, is titled “We Hate the USA” and also includes songs referencing former presidential candidate John Edwards and the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, among other targets.
According to The Hill, other song titles, some of which were in bold font, were: “John Edwards’ Poverty Tour,” “Wright place, wrong pastor,” “Love Client #9,” “Ivory and Ebony” and “The Star Spanglish Banner.”
Saltsman was national campaign manager for former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee’s presidential bid in 2007 and 2008. Before that, he held a variety of posts, including a number of positions under former Sen. Bill Frist of Tennessee, reports CNN.