KQED’s Belva Davis sat down with Condoleezza Rice last week after the former secretary of state’s speech to the Republican National Convention. Rice shared her thoughts on a range of hot-button issues, including the spate of state voter-identification laws enacted by Republicans. Rice said she’s sympathetic to attempts to ensure there’s no voter fraud, and disputed the contention that minorities would be especially burdened.
Former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice. (Image: KQED "This Week in Northern California")
“I don’t like very much the argument that minorities can’t get an ID,” she said. “That seems to infantilize [them]. We can do this, but people have to be given time. We have to find a way to make it easy. The states are reacting because the federal government has not and we do need to solve this problem. But let’s give people time and doesn’t make it difficult for people to exercise their franchise.”
Davis also asked Rice about the so-called “war on women” that Democrats are claiming the GOP is waging. Rice promptly shot that down…
“There’s no war against women. This is hyperbole of the worst sort. We shouldn’t caricature each other this way. There are people who have strong beliefs about issues of abortion, about life, about choice, strong issues. Let’s respect each other. This is a party that has a lot of powerful and strong women within it, many of them who have views that may be different from my own, but let’s respect each other. I feel welcome in this party and I think it’s time to stop this caricature and hyperbole.” Continue reading
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Last night at the Republican National Convention, movie star, director and cultural icon Clint Eastwood gave an address that might politely be called awkward. Eastwood started out fine, attempting to debunk the notion that all of Hollywood is liberal. “There’s a lot of conservative people, a lot of moderate people — Republicans, Democrats — in Hollywood. It’s just that conservative people, by the nature of the word itself, play it a little more close to the vest and they don’t go around hotdoggin’ it.”
It’s at that juncture that the 82-year-old Eastwood seemed to belie that very point by engaging in a flamboyant performance piece that might put some Democrats in mind of a first-year acting exercise, others of a breakthrough Gestalt therapy session, and to the truly uncharitable a temporary psychotic break. What Eastwood did was put an imaginary Barack Obama in a real chair he had toted on stage, then engage the president in a rather one-sided conversation.
Even — or especially — the Romney camp was not digging the act. From the New York Times today:
Clint Eastwood’s rambling and off-color endorsement of Mitt Romney on Thursday seemed to startle and unsettle even the candidate’s own top aides, several of whom made a point of distancing themselves from the decision to put him onstage without a polished script.
“Not me,” said an exasperated-looking senior adviser, when asked who was responsible for Mr. Eastwood’s speech. In late-night interviews, aides variously called the speech “strange” and “weird.” One described it as “theater of the absurd.”
Finger-pointing quickly ensued, suggesting real displeasure and even confusion over the handling of Mr. Eastwood’s performance, which was kept secret until the last minute. Full article