Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Sen. Flake does the easy thing. But would he have done the right thing?

Here's another short report from the Capitol Times on Sen. Flake accepting a monetary contribution from the leader of a white supremacist organization.

U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake says he’s donating campaign contributions he received from a white supremacist to a charity.

Monday’s action by Arizona’s junior senator comes after the Guardian newspaper reported that Flake was among the Republicans who received donations Earl Holt. Holt leads a white supremacist group cited by Charleston, South Carolina, church murder suspect Dylann Roof in an online manifesto.

Flake’s press secretary says he will donate the $1,000 he received in 2012 to the Mother Emanuel Hope Fund, which was set up to help the families of the nine victims of last week’s shooting.

We'll never know for sure whether Flake would have voluntarily refused or refunded the monetary contribution from Earl Holt, the leader of the Council of Conservative Citizens. Would he have done so in the absence of public outcry? I doubt it. Charitably, and perhaps realistically, he may not have known where a $1,000 contribution came from. But even if he did not, his staff should be checking such things. Regardless, giving it up now clears a low bar. Flake and all the other recipients of cash from Hunt should not be backing off -- they should be using the force of their offices to visibly and publicly to denounce CofCC.

Sure they will. The heat must be getting to me.

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