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Charleston Church Massacre Raises Profile Of White Nationalist Group — And Its GOP Connections

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Charleston Church Massacre Raises Profile Of White Nationalist Group — And Its GOP Connections


Dylann Roof, the confessed murderer at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina, has at least one group of people that agrees with his fanatical racism — and it might cause some complications for some Republican politicians.

In his manifesto, Roof has written about being influenced by a white supremacist organization known as the Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC). And on Sunday night, the CCC posted its own response regarding Roof’s “legitimate grievances.”

“The C of CC unequivocally condemns Roof’s murderous actions,” the group’s statement said. “However, the council stands unshakably behind the facts on its website, and points out the dangers of denying the extent of black-on-white crime.”

The statement by group spokesman Jared Taylor also added (with all emphasis in the original):

Our society’s silence about these crimes—despite enormous amounts of attention to “racially tinged” acts by whites—only increase the anger of people like Dylann Roof. This double standard *only makes acts of murderous frustration more likely*.

In his manifesto, Roof outlines other grievances felt by many whites. Again, we utterly condemn Roof’s despicable killings, but they do not detract in the slightest from the legitimacy of some of the positions he has expressed. *Ignoring legitimate grievances is dangerous*.

The Guardian did some digging, and discovered that the group’s leader, Earl Holt, has donated $65,000 to Republican campaigns in recent years, including Rand Paul, Rick Santorum, and Ted Cruz. Upon being asked about this, Cruz’s campaign told the paper that it will be refunding Holt’s money — while Rand Paul’s has chosen a much better move, telling Politico that it will be donating the money to the Mother Emanuel Hope Fund, to assist Roof’s victims and their families.

The Council of Conservative Citizens is a white nationalist organization, declaring on its website that they “oppose all efforts to mix the races of mankind, to promote non-white races over the European-American people through so-called ‘affirmative action’ and similar measures, to destroy or denigrate the European-American heritage, including the heritage of the Southern people, and to force the integration of the races.”

The group was first officially organized in 1985 — but has long been identified as simply being the successor to an older movement of racist organizations, known as the white Citizens Councils, which went back to 1954.

Those previous groups, sometimes referred as “the uptown Klan,” were made up of white supremacists who organized to resist the Supreme Court’s decision outlawing school segregation in Brown v. Board of Education, and often practiced such tactics as the boycotting or blacklisting of pro-civil rights individuals from the local business communities.

Former Mississippi governor Haley Barbour (R-MS) landed in hot water early in the 2012 campaign cycle, during a time when he was seen as a potential presidential candidate, after he openly praised the original Citizens Councils for keeping order, supposedly by suppressing the Klan. (A skeptic would argue that to the extent this was even true, they simply crowded out the Klan in order to make sure white supremacy could maintain a sheen of public respectability.)

But over the years, the CCC has itself maintained genuine political pull in the South and nearby regions. As National Memo editor-in-chief Joe Conason once reported, former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft also had ties to the CCC’s then-leader, the late Gordon Baum, when Ashcroft was a U.S. senator.

In 1992, then-U.S. senator (and future Senate majority leader) Trent Lott (R-MS) delivered a keynote speech to a gathering of the group in his home state of Mississippi. “We need more meetings like this across the nation,” Lott told them. “The people in this room stand for the right principles and the right philosophy. Let’s take it in the right direction and our children will be the beneficiaries.”

When this news surfaced in 1998, Lott disavowed having any “firsthand knowledge” about what the group stood for, and his office said he rejected their views.

And in 2001, then-Louisiana state Rep. Tony Perkins (R) — now head of the religious-right Family Research Council — also spoke at a CCC meeting. He subsequently claimed he could not remember speaking at the event.



  1. JPHALL June 22, 2015

    Don’t you just love the “good ole boys” and their networking.

    1. FireBaron June 23, 2015

      Frankly, I enjoyed reading that Paul was sending his contribution from the CofCC to a memorial fund for Mother Emmanuel!

      1. Polana June 23, 2015

        Good political move on all fronts. He is a racist.

      2. JPHALL June 23, 2015

        Good observation.
        Subject: Re: Comment on Charleston Church Massacre Raises Profile Of White Nationalist Group — And Its GOP Connections

  2. Dominick Vila June 23, 2015

    The rise of white supremacist, neo-Nazi, groups should concern us all. These groups are no longer made up of a few individuals flexing their muscles and making bizarre statements in the woods. They are well organized, heavily armed, and consumed by so much hatred that they represent a serious threat to our democracy, our freedom, our form of government, and our society. Extremism is always dangerous, regardless of whether it involves right or left wing fanaticism, but when it evolves into an armed militia determined to get their way regardless of how most American feel, it becomes a real danger than cannot be ignored or condoned.
    What happened in Charleston may very well be the start of something that if it is not nipped in the bud soon, it could degenerate into serious civil unrest.

    1. The lucky one June 23, 2015

      You say that like it’s a bad thing. We need some serious civil unrest in this country because it is very clear that those in power will not make the changes needed unless forced to do so.

      “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.”

      “Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet depreciate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground.”

      Frederick Douglass

      1. FireBaron June 23, 2015

        Interestingly enough, the ones in power are the ones these supremacist groups are supporting! Or did you forget the stranglehold the GOP has on Congress and the Supreme Court?

        1. The lucky one June 23, 2015

          I think the stranglehold is from the 1% with the GOP and also most democrats being merely their tools. It’s interesting that when Iranians perceived that their national elections were tainted many took the streets and some died when the government repressed this dissent. On the other hand when SCOTUS illegally handed the presidency to the loser of the Bush-Gore election contest no such thing happened here.

      2. Dominick Vila June 23, 2015

        There are many ways to influence change without resorting to violence.

        1. The lucky one June 23, 2015

          I agree and I try to do so myself and support others doing likewise but it seems clear to me that most politicians including a large percentage of dems will only work toward meaningful change when prodded very strongly, strongly enough to make them ignore their corporate patrons and act ethically. Unfortunately it may take making our “leaders” fear physical harm to make that happen.

          Civil unrest does not need to be violent to work, in fact the violence usually comes from those entrusted with “keeping the peace” rather than the protestors.

  3. 1standlastword June 23, 2015

    Events conspire to fall the republican party and this is one among many. All this country needs is a class of courageously moral men and women with a passion to lead to push the GOP off the ledge they cling to

  4. dtgraham June 23, 2015

    Council of Conservative Citizens huh. Gee, I never would have guessed from reading the National Memo for the last 3 1/2 years. I’ve noticed here that conservatives hate to be called racist. They just hate it. They really don’t like it. From their posts though, the only thing that they seem to hate even more than that is Mexicans and blacks.

    I saw a few moments of a Fox and Friends episode last weekend where they tried to portray the whole Charleston shooting as an attack on Christians. That gave them the opportunity to advance both their Christian persecution narrative and their guns everywhere agenda. They had two pastors on to discuss whether all church pastors should be packing heat on Sundays. That was the topic, which wasn’t allowed to go off in some other direction. To further cover themselves, the two pastors were black. Brilliant. According to them, pastors shooting from the hip shouldn’t be just a figure of speech.

    Roof’s apartheid badges? His racial manifesto? His Confederate flags? His love of the Klan and skinheads?
    Fox News — “yeah, so what are you driving at?”

    1. Insinnergy June 24, 2015

      Nicely put.

  5. Eleanore Whitaker June 23, 2015

    The very idea as Nikki Haley stated in her address about removing the Stars and Bars that it is part of their heritage is bogus. That would mean everyone who lives up north should fly the colonists Revolutionary War flag because that’s OUR heritage.

    I rarely take the time to hate anything or anyone since it is always easier to erase their existence. But when you debased the Stars and Stripes and disrespect it by flying the flag of a war to keep and own slaves under the banner of “states rights,” you disrespect not just the flag but all of the men and women who fought under the Stars and Stripes. Sorry, it’ is time to take a stand.

  6. paulyz June 23, 2015

    Leave it to the National Memo to turn this terrible tragedy caused by a madman into a political issue. Most people know that it was the Democrat Party that initiated Jim Crow laws, Black Codes, & terrorist organizations like the KKK. The Democrat Party strongly opposed the 13th., 14th., & 15th., amendments. The Democrats opposed the Civil Rights Acts of 1866, 1875, 1957, 1960, 1964, & the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Democrat Robert Kennedy approved secret wire-taps on MLK, President Lyndon Johnson called Dr. MLK as that N—– preacher, & of course we know all about Sen. Byrd’s racism. Many more examples but Lefties will ignore them while trying to advance their political agenda of Socialist policies, not allowing this “Crisis to go to Waste”. Liberals fail to complain of the racism of minority groups & violence as well, like the Black Panthers call to murder Whites, or the higher rates of Black on White crime than visa-versa, or the huge Black on Black crime. This only inflames the division while doing nothing to solve the real causes.

    1. bobnstuff June 23, 2015

      Just as the Republican party has changed into the party of the far right so has the Democrats been transformed into the party of the moderate left. The change started with Reagan and has gotten worse over time. The media has helped
      these happen but feeding twisted information to the people and trying to generate fear and hate. Truth has been lost in out country as have the ideas of a government working together for the common good.

      1. paulyz June 24, 2015

        FAR LEFT, hardly moderate. More Americans are center right, not center or far left.

        1. bobnstuff June 24, 2015

          It only seems far left when you are so far out on the right. There are more Democrats in this country then Republicans They tend to be a little left of center as is our President. The thing I fine interesting is that today’s Democrats are about at the point the Republicans were in the fifty’s and sixties. I’ve been reading the platforms from 1956 through 1968 and it would seem that the table has been turned. The Republican party was pro union and pro civil rights. That’s why Hilary started out as a Republican and Reagan was Democrat.

          1. paulyz June 24, 2015

            The percentage of Americans that identify as Liberals are only 22%, while those that identify as Conservative are from 36 to 40%. The rest identify as Moderate.

          2. bobnstuff June 24, 2015

            So between 62% and 65% are not conservatives. That also means that the average Democrat is a moderate and that there are more moderate Democrats then moderate Republicans.

          3. paulyz June 25, 2015

            And 78% to 80% are not Liberals. Too bad the Liberals control the Democrat Party. The Moderates usually are Independents, and lean more right than wrong, I mean left.

          4. bobnstuff June 25, 2015

            The thing is that the liberals don’t control the party, they just seem liberal because they make sense. As I said most Democrats are moderates. Your numbers back that up. The
            bills introduced in Congress by Democrats are the same things the Republicans supported 50 years ago. A good example is the heath care bill ACA, If it was truly liberal there would have been a single payer system not a market driven one. If the Democrats had been truly liberal they wouldn’t have made the 42 major changes to the bill to try to get republican support. Extremest don’t make for good government. The Republicans are finding this out.

          5. paulyz June 27, 2015

            Liberals take what they can get, than keep pushing till they eventually will get their single-payer, pure Government controlled, Socialist health care. Even though this has been a big failure where it has been in place. Democrats are actually more out of tune to most Americans than the Repubkican Party, but by creating even more dependency, & poverty, more people believe the Democrats will make “everything better” for them. So they tax & spend even more for more programs that there isn’t enough revenue for, while making conditions worse.

          6. bobnstuff June 27, 2015

            That sounds good until you check the facts. The ACA is working, Our spending is going down, government is
            smaller. The fact that government is not the enemy and does good is a problem to all the doomsayers. They want to sell off government to the highest bidder. If it works they can’t. I guess you would rather have a for profit company telling you what thy will pay for then the government. You enjoy having them say they won’t pay for a drug that has been on the market for 50 years because it is experimental. Did you enjoy them cancel your coverage when you get sick. Did you like
            having your rates go up 15% to 20% every year? My favorite is when may company change carriers having to find a doctor that took the new one. You have been sold a bill of goods by people who do not care about your best interest buy about making money off you. Just so you know the best working medical insurance system in the country is Medicare. The most bang for the buck, A one payer system.

          7. paulyz June 28, 2015

            FACTS? The only way the ACA can work is by 1. Taking $716 Billion from Medicare. 2. Raising taxes another $500 Billion for ACA. And 3. Giving Federal Subsidies (Our Taxes), to ALL 50 States to keep premiums down, or 70% of people could not afford this “affordable” care, & would have dropped it.
            Spending going down? That’s why our debt is now over $18 Trillion & growing rapidly, evdntually making it impossible to continue the functioning of the Fed. Gov., when just the interest consumes the revenue. With private insurance you can change policies, when the cold Federal Government controls it, that’s it, you will not have choices. My health care & insurance has given me good coverage with reasonable rates for many years, but with Obamacare, this will gradually end. Obamacare is basically Medicare for everyone, but we all know how Medicare is going bankrupt. You can believe all the hype on how great it is, but if you were really paying attention, you would see the obvious signs of it causing many hardships & costs building up until it will be tragic.

          8. bobnstuff June 28, 2015

            Fact the $716 billion went back into medicare to fix the hole in the drug program. Fact you insurance under the ACA is private insurance, not government controlled except from keeping them from ripping you off. You think the Fed is cold, they don’t have to make money off you like the private companies do, the term blood sucking comes to mind .Is medicare going broke, It will in ten 2026 by Paul Ryan’s numbers if it isn’t fixed, Of courses it has been going broke since LBJ past it and is still here, Obama reduced the deficit by 50%.


            The ACA is working, people are getting health care who haven’t had it before. The increase in rates has slowed to the lowest rate in years. Could it be better, yes if half the government wanted it to work, but they can’t make money off it so they just want it to go away. The Republicans solution to health care, let the poor die, after all it’s their fault they are poor.

          9. paulyz July 6, 2015

            No, the government doesn’t need to worry about a payroll or profits, just keep spending & taxing for votes until just the interest on our tremendous National Debt consumes 100% of our revenue. ONLY then will Socialists be shocked into reality. Amazing, so Obama just “used” $716 Billion for the drug program! Medicare doesn’t even spend that much annually for Medicare for 47 Million people. Wasn’t it you Liberals that bitched about W starting Part D? So BO doubled-down, or quadrupled down. Only by the Unaffordable Care Act taxing all the people in all the States by subsidies, could it even survive, but costs are expected to greatly increase.

          10. bobnstuff July 6, 2015

            First it was $716 billion over ten years and by reducing growth in spending (which I thought the right liked). In doing so made the funding go till 2030 or longer. He at the same time fixed a problem that Mr. Bush had left in the program. The government is slowing the growth in spending and has less employees then it did under the last president. If you want to look at the big spending party it is the Republicans, and they don’t fund their spending well. Medicare is around $476 billion per year and
            services 54 million people.

      2. paulyz June 25, 2015

        Might be hard for you to explain how 49 States voted for Reagan in a HUGE landslide, causing many former Democrats to switch to Republican, or I should say, Conservative.

        1. bobnstuff June 25, 2015

          Reagan won because he was Reagan and was bigger then life. Look at who he beat. That was the end of the true Republican party. How he managed to stay in office is a wonder. If Clinton had done half of what he did he would have been in jail. The Teflon President.

    2. pattreid June 23, 2015

      Uh, it seems the murderer himself deemed this a political issue. You use this to condemn the Dem party (and that’s NOT politicizing???) for what they were 60-75 or more years ago, you fail to recognize that the GOP was more than happy to pick of the mantle of bigotry abandoned by the Dems who came to see the error of their ways. You also might want to read up on socialism to find out what it really is. Then, you might have the great awakening that we have nothing remotely socialist in America today, and that today’s Dems are more ‘centrist’ than leftist.

      Note: there is far more white on white crime than there is black on white crime. A fact you choose to leave out of the discourse. Fact: people tend to commit crimes in their own neck of the woods. You also ignore the fact that all but one mass murder in the US was committed by white men. The exception was one Asian man. And that all of the top 15 most wanted violent criminals in America are white except for one black person and 1 or 2 hispanic persons.

      Don’t look now, but your own bigotry is rearing its ugly head, and even your clear ignorance of, or distortion of, facts will not excuse it.

      1. paulyz June 24, 2015

        You need to follow the train of the discussion. I mentioned how the National Memo used this tragedy for political propaganda blaming the Republican Party, while I factually shown the fallacy of that argument, showing facts on how the Democrat Party was responsible for much racism. People reading these National Memo posts need to be informed with the truth, not propaganda, so they can make up their own minds, not be manipulated for political reasons.

    3. Grannysmovin June 23, 2015

      Head in the sand? Yes we all know how racist the democratic party was at one time, but they evolved and learned from their mistakes. Unlike the GOP we learn from history. There has been an increase in white on white crime. Also Mass Murders have been committed by white people against all races, religions, genders and age. What inflames the division and does not solve the real issues is the GOP Rhetoric and derogatory terms used when speaking about people of color which only inflames their base. Blocking passage of the 2011 Jobs Act which would have put people of all races back to work and enable them to provide for their own without Government assistance. What makes a white supremacist hate group donate to Republican Candidates, it must be something they are saying or doing that makes these racist haters think they feel the way they do.

      1. paulyz June 24, 2015

        Ohh, they “evolved”. Just can never admit the problems & biases of your Liberal Party, can you?

        1. Aaron_of_Portsmouth June 30, 2015

          “wah-wah-wah!!!” Start making regular visits to the library or purchase some books by reputable authors—your bookshelves(if there are any) must be bare, aside from a few hunting books and humor material, by your lack of cogent and lucid ideas.

          1. paulyz July 6, 2015

            There you go again, saying nothing. Thanks for showing us your completely biased thought processes and tolerance of opposing views and facts.

    4. Karen Bille-Golden June 23, 2015

      Paulzy you have a lot to say on this site. I read your comments all the time. How about expanding on your last sentence by telling us what you see as the real cause of racial division in America and what your solution might be?

      1. BillP June 23, 2015

        Karen it will never happen, when faced with provable facts or challenged on his ludicrous comments he will disappear. I’m still waiting for a response from him on his claiming his state of Wisconsin pays more tax to the Federal Gov’t than they receive. In reality (a bad word for right wing trolls) his state gets $1.79 for every $1.00 they send to the Federal Gov’t. The state is in the top ten states that receive more tax money than they send.

        1. Karen Bille-Golden June 23, 2015

          Bill, I’m not surprised at all by his lack of response. It’s a tough question requiring deep thought and one with which we are all struggling ..
          . I guess he thought his lovely little platitude was enough. And, sometimes – silence speaks louder than words.

      2. paulyz June 24, 2015

        I have many times gave reasons & solutions, but quite a waste of time when trying to debate with most Liberals on this site. Many Black leaders state what I and others state are reasons & solutions. Finishing school, getting employment, & staying out of trouble is a good start for any race, but many Blacks come from unstable families & gravitate to gangs & crime. The Black unemployment rate is very high, especially for the young, but Millions of Illegals keep coming & take these jobs. The Liberal policies of the Federal Government creates dependency which causes lower ambition. When Whites see how much money has been spent on special programs for minorities, but witness conditions becoming even worse, they lose sympathy for even more of the same. Many Whites are tired of the blame & excuses when most have struggled as well. Tired of quotas, saying we have “White Privilege”, called racist for everything, expected to change our American culture, and if we complain about all the crime & dependency in most large cities, are called racist, etc. Obama himself has contributed to racial division when he could have like he first stated, would heal it. This Country is now more divided than than it has been for decades. Blaming, more spending, & divisive talk only widens that divide, while conditions have worsened. I could elaborate further, but I am sure will be attacked like usual, & the beat goes on.

        1. Aaron_of_Portsmouth June 30, 2015

          Your state of denial is the reason your shallow arguments fail to have sway over those who choose to think instead of react like a one-celled protozoan. When you are able to string together a well-reasoned and articulate statement that’s measured and objective, then you may have someone take notice. For now, only similarly-challenged individuals will nod their approval of the bile you submit.

          1. paulyz July 6, 2015

            Are you now feeling superior with your condecending, elitist, know-it-all attitude? Just like Liberal professors, you speak a lot of words but they mean nothing. You are more interested in hearing yourself bloviate. Ammusing.

          2. dpaano August 28, 2015

            I thought Aaron made pretty good sense personally!!! You, on the other hand….not so much.

      3. Dennis Wenthold June 29, 2015

        The racism will stop when parents raise their children to love their neighbor no matter who they are or where the come from.

    5. johninPCFL June 23, 2015

      Yes, blue dog (or yellow dog, depending on which state) democrats started the KKK, but left in droves after Lyndon Johnson signed the civil rights and voting rights acts. The new GOP strategist Lee Atwater formulated “the southern strategy” to attract the defecting southern voters. Formerly, winning most of the northeastern states was required to bag the presidency. Atwater forged a bond with the White Citizens Councils to support the GOP candidates, and Florida rose to its current level of prominence in the race.

    6. Insinnergy June 24, 2015

      Shhhh… adults are talking.

    7. Dennis Wenthold June 29, 2015

      Your comments are historically correct but 150 years later both parties have done 180 degree flop.

    8. Aaron_of_Portsmouth June 30, 2015

      What an excellent example of abject ignorance of history and the social currents that have come to define a large aspect of Americana.

      1. paulyz July 6, 2015

        Appears only you are in abject ignorance of history, as many of your fellow Socialists admit that it WAS the Democrat Party, just like I mentioned. I always state the truth, but you, & many here, can’t accept it, since it is counter to your ideology. When you can’t accept that, you typically lash out in anger & namecalling.

  7. 13observer June 23, 2015

    They blamed it on the NRA. the oldest civil rights organization in the U.S.

  8. Aaron_of_Portsmouth June 30, 2015

    “…despite enormous amounts of attention to “racially tinged” acts by whites—only increase the anger of people like Dylann Roof. This double standard *only makes acts of murderous frustration more likely*.”

    Yep, sounds like an excuse to justify and therefore commit heinous acts in defense of an irrational belief in a fallacy based on a human construct called RACE, which our European brothers codified and implemented via a variety of quasi-scientific proclamations conceived by various scholars/philosophers during the Age of Enlightenment and the Reformation, and later. And now the germ of those ill-begotten theories have made their way to the “New World” and are insinuating their way into the fiber of the American psyche, taking root in the hearts and minds of adults, youth, even children(little do they perceive the build-up in their innocent minds).
    Some demented soul below has the gall to equate the NRA to a “civil rights organization”—as though carrying a firearm is some sort of angelic attribute. Such is just a tiny sample of the sickness that slowly eats away at the body-politic of America.

  9. dpaano August 28, 2015

    That is one very mentally ill sociopatic-looking child! It’s sad to see someone his age appear so unhappy that he feels it necessary to shoot up a church full of innocent people!


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