Glenn Beck went completely off the deep end today by claiming that if John F. Kennedy were alive today he would be a radical tea partier.
Audio via Media Matters:
Beck said, “So, who was John F. Kennedy? He’s been coopted by the left, but would he be? Would people like Orrin Hatch? Would people like Mitch McConnell even accept a man like John F. Kennedy today? You see, the left would say that he would be right there with the left today. Well, he might be. Because when you boil a frog as long as the water is tepid when he gets in, right? But if you do it slowly, do it slowly, he’ll be boiled. But if it’s hot, he’ll jump out. I contend that the water would be so hot right now that JFK, if you could bring him back. If you could bring back the politician that JFK was, he wouldn’t be accepted by the Republican Party because he would be a tea party radical. He wouldn’t even recognize what this country has become, and I’m basing that on his words.”
According to Beck, JFK would be a radical fringe Republican running around with a tea bag on his head, who would be appearing on stage with Ted Cruz and Sarah Palin.
Since Glenn claimed to be using JFK’s words as his basis, here are a few quotes that demonstrate that President Kennedy would be repulsed by the tea party:
JFK on equality for all, “The heart of the question is whether all Americans are to be afforded equal rights and equal opportunities; whether we are going to treat our fellow Americans as we want to be treated.” This a very un-Republican position. Kennedy’s quote can be applied to voting rights, equal pay, and equal rights for same sex couples. These are all things that the Republican Party is opposed to.
President Kennedy on the real evil of extremism, “What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.” One look at the things that Republicans have said about President Obama would be enough for Kennedy to denounce their words and tactics.
At a time when obstructionism and isolationism dominate the Republican Party, this quote from Kennedy’s inaugural address stands out, “So let us begin anew — remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness, and sincerity is always subject to proof. Let us never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate.”
John F. Kennedy is the latest in a long line of heroes that the right has tried to posthumously turn Republican. They try this same thing yearly with Martin Luther King. The reality is that if JFK was around today, he would be a centrist Democrat, and he would be appalled by the extremism of the Republican Party.
Glenn Beck was making things up, because the arrogant right believes that they own heroism and patriotism. Any American who is viewed as a hero or patriot must be shoehorned into the right wing camp.
JFK was a Democrat, and if he were alive today, he still would be a Democrat. No amount of tea party mythmaking, and Glenn Beck fairy tales can change the facts.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA.Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association