The Connecticut Democrat Party is facing intense heat for seemingly using a reference to the children’s book/TV character Curious George, a monkey, to attack Connecticut congressional candidate George Logan, a black Republican.
In a Twitter post published Wednesday, the party sought to question whether Logan lives in the district that he’s eyeing to represent.
According to CT Insider, the post specifically featured a photo of Logan standing in front of a “Don’t Tread On Me Flag.”
That part of the post was fine. What wasn’t fine, according to a growing chorus of critics, was the text of the tweet.
“This is George. George doesn’t live in the 5th District but wants to represent it in Congress. George’s uncle lives in the 5th District. George says he’s moved into his uncle’s house. But has he? Just run where you live, George. Deceiving voters is no way to start a campaign,” the tweet read.
See a screenshot of the since-deleted tweet below:
Notice the wording of the tweet: George is this; George is that. The wording is awfully similar to the wording in the original “Curious George” children’s book.
“This is George. He lived in Africa. He was a good little monkey and always very curious,” the original book reads.
Critics say this is no coincidence.
“They’re comparing an African-American and Latino man to a monkey. I’m pretty sure if Republicans had put the same tweet out about Jahana Hayes the Democrats would be asking for it to be taken down and calling for whoever created it to be fired because it’s clearly racist,” Connecticut Republican Party chair Ben Proto reportedly said Thursday.
Hayes is Logan’s Democrat challenger. According to reports, she retweeted the Connecticut Democrat Party’s controversial tweet before it was deleted and wrote, “Raise your hand if you live in the 5th.”
According to Logan, “this isn’t the first time” that she and the party have engaged in potentially racist antics.
“For a party that claims to be open and inclusive, this sort of tweet, which was also retweeted by my opponent Jahana Hayes, certainly comes off as racially motivated. However, this isn’t the first time Democrats and Jahana Hayes have made racially charged comments or statements in regards to my candidacy,” he said in a statement.
“While Americans are experiencing surging inflation, the highest gas prices in our nation’s history, increase in crime in our communities, and a crisis at our southern border, Democrats would rather play the race card than talk about or solve our issues. I won’t be deterred from addressing the real issues that are negatively impacting the residents of the 5th District.”
— George Logan (@GSLoganCT) May 20, 2022
The party has for its party pleaded innocence, claiming that they’d been referencing “Fun with Dick and Jane,” a book that they claim boasts similar wordplay. They’ve also tried to portray Connecticut GOP as the bad guys.
“The Connecticut Republicans have no opinion about actual racism in their ranks; about demanding that schools stop teaching the history of slavery, about the murderous violence incited by the persistent discussion of replacement theory,” Connecticut Democrat Party chair Nancy DiNardo reportedly said in a statement.
“But they are finding racism where there is none. We suggest the CTGOP get on line and look up memes with stick people, and that George Logan live in the district where he’s running for office.”
But Proto wasn’t impressed by this rhetoric.
“It doesn’t matter how it was meant,” Proto said. “They’re clearly attempting to tie the book into the tweet. I’m pretty sure if a Republican posted that about Jahana Hayes, we would be called racially insensitive,” he reportedly said.
“Is it ok for Democrats to make racist comments? There are plenty of issues, legitimate issues we should be talking about in the Congressional district, but using comments about George Logan like this are despicable.”
Also not impressed, much to his credit, was Connecticut Rep. Jim Himes, a Democrat:
I just became aware of a deeply problematic tweet, posted by my party, @CTDems. Had the GOP posted it, we’d be condemning it. So let’s do that here: intent matters little, whataboutism is not ok, the purported substance doesn’t matter. Let’s take it down, apologize and learn.
— Jim Himes 🇺🇸🇺🇦 (@jahimes) May 20, 2022
Hayes meanwhile has chosen to apologize, albeit in the most combative way humanely possible.
“I read the tweet as saying this person wants to run in the 5th district, yet has no interest in moving here and is instead using the address of a relative. The tweet itself used a cadence popular in millennial posts: e.g. this is Jane – don’t be like Jane. The point of my retweet was to stress that I have lived, worked, raised my family, served, worshipped and been deeply rooted in the 5th district my entire life,” she said in a statement.
“I did not see a racial overtone and was surprised when it was framed that way. The implication that I, as a black person would encourage a racist tweet is absurd. I find it hard to believe that anyone, acting in good faith, could interpret my re-tweet as stoking racial animus against another African American. That does not benefit me, my campaign or this district in any way. I do not participate in that kind of behavior and never have. I do however, understand perception and if he was offended that is good enough for me and I apologize.”
But did she really mean it … ?
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