A Brief Recent History of 'I Don't Have a Racist Bone in My Body'

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As it turns out, many public racists with track records of doing very racist things and supporting very racist policies do not have a racist bone in their bodies.

2019

Former Vice President Joe Biden, after fondly recalling working with white supremacist senators in the 1970s

“Apologize for what?” he said Wednesday evening before appearing at a fund-raiser in Maryland, adding that he “could not have disagreed with Jim Eastland more.”

Asked by reporters about Mr. Booker’s demand that he apologize for his remarks, Mr. Biden said: “Cory should apologize. He knows better. There’s not a racist bone in my body. I’ve been involved in civil rights my whole career, period, period, period.”

Republican Representative Mark Meadows, after a video in which he stated that he wanted to send Barack Obama back to “Kenya or wherever” resurfaced

The following day, after videos resurfaced of his comments about sending Obama “home to Kenya or wherever it is,” Meadows said he no longer supported the conspiracy theory that Obama was not born in the United States. (Trump himself long promoted the Obama birther theory.) Meadows also declared: “I can tell you that anyone who knows me knows that there is not a racial bone in my body.”

Friends of white supremacist Representative Steve King are positive he has no racist bones

“I know him, and there is not a racist bone in his body,” Norman said. “He’s as kind and compassionate of a guy as I’ve met. He’s led the way for the rights of the unborn. He’s just a class guy.”

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2017

Donald Trump, according to his surrogates, after he said there were “very fine people” on “both sides” of a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia

“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out the liberal media is not a fan of President Trump,” said Trump’s Alabama campaign chairman, Perry Hooper, arguing the Russia investigation is driven by media obsession. He added, “Now they’re trying to make him some kind of racist. It’s ridiculous. He doesn’t have a racist bone in his body.”

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Jeff Sessions has at least two friends who just know that he doesn’t have any racist bones.

Other supporters claim Sessions is being smeared by the left. Former George W. Bush administration deputy attorney general Larry Thompson, an African American and good friend of Sessions for more than 30 years, said, “He doesn’t have a racist bone in his body.”

Another defender, George J. Terwilliger III, who served as deputy attorney general under President George H.W. Bush and has known Sessions for nearly three decades, echoed Thompson: “I can say unequivocally there’s not a racist bone in the guy’s body.”

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2015

Hulk Hogan, after he went on an n-word-filled rant in which he said, “I am a racist, to a point”

“Oh, my gosh. Please forgive me. Please forgive me,” he said. “I think if you look at the whole picture of who Hulk Hogan is, you can see over all the years that there’s not a racist bone in my body.”

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2014

Former House Speaker Paul Ryan, who has no racist bones whatsoever

The phone call came after some controversy over Ryan’s remark that some in the inner city don’t have the desire to work because it’s not a part of the culture. Lee was among Ryan’s chief critics, calling the remark a “thinly veiled racial attack.”

Ryan said in an interview set to air on the “O’Reilly Factor” on Fox News Tuesday night that he spoke to Lee and she knows him better than that.

“She does not believe that I have these views,” the potential 2016 presidential candidate said, according to advance remarks from the interview. “She knows me well and she knows that I don’t have a racist bone in my body.”

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2013

Mitch McConnell, according to a friend, has a skeleton that 100 percent free of racist bones

Someone who has known McConnell for years told me he doesn’t have a “racist bone in his body.”

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Not! A! Single! Racist! Bone!

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About the author

Esther Wang

Senior staff writer, Jezebel