During his weekly radio program, controversial Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach agreed with a caller, who theorized, that during the remainder of Obama’s presidency, “any black person accused of a crime, charged with a crime, is not going to be prosecuted, regardless of the crime.” Rather than dismissing the caller’s absurd claim, Kobach validated the conspiracy theory, arguing that U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder:
basically made it clear….that the civil rights laws were only to protect minority races, and he was not going to be enforcing them to the benefit of white people who were discriminated against on the basis of their race. So, that’s basically what you’ve described.
The caller, who went by the name Stu, then repeated his theory, by claiming:
So the word is going to come down that there just won’t be any prosecutions of black criminals. And I can see it happening. I don’t think I’m nuts for envisioning it.
Kobach again entertained the caller’s ridiculous notion, though he did throw in a feeble disclaimer, responding:
Well, it’s already happened more or less in the case of civil rights laws. So I guess it’s not a huge jump, I think it’s unlikely, but you know I’ve learned to say with this president, never say never.
Of course, the charge is patently false, and yes, it is a huge jump to assume that the White House will issue some kind of executive order banning the arrest of black people. African-Americans who commit federal crimes or civil rights violations are arrested and prosecuted, just as suspects of other races are. For example, in November, two members of the New Black Panther Party, Brandon Baldwin and Olajuwon Davis, were indicted on federal weapons charges.
Furthermore, while right-wing critics of hate crime statutes seem to believe that such laws only target white people, FBI statistics from 2012, show that 23 percent of race-based hate crimes involve a black offender, and 22 percent of racially-motivated hate crimes involve a white victim. Law enforcement agencies have no qualms about arresting and prosecuting black suspects for hate crimes if they can demonstrate that anti-white bias was a factor in the commission of the crime.
As Secretary of State, Kris Kobach has frequently generated controversy. He has been a staunch foe of immigration reform. Though he lives in Kansas, Kobach authored Arizona S.B 1070, the “papers please” anti-immigration measure that Arizona passed into law in 2010. That law was struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2012, with only Justices Alito, Scalia, and Thomas agreeing with the Draconian measure. Kobach has also repeatedly made bogus accusations about voter fraud, earning him a rebuke from U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom for his unsubstantiated claims.
Kris Kobach is also a “Birther”, who entertained an effort to have Barack Obama removed from the Kansas ballot in 2012, falsely contending that Obama had not provided adequate proof of his American citizenship. Although Obama was not removed from the ballot, Kobach argued that the effort to have Obama removed from the ballot was not a “frivolous objection.”
Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach has once again demonstrated that he is a right-wing extremist, willing to entertain the most outlandish racist fantasies of his white supremacist supporters. By validating the conspiratorial rantings of racists, Kobach has demonstrated that he remains one of the nation’s least constructive and most polarizing elected officials.
Keith Brekhus is a progressive American who currently resides in Red Lodge, Montana. He is co-host for the Liberal Fix radio show. He holds a Master’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Missouri. In 2002, he ran for Congress as a Green Party candidate in the state of Missouri. In 2014, he worked as a field organizer for Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick’s successful re-election bid in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. He can be followed on Twitter @keithbrekhus or on Facebook.