Congessional Black Caucus Letter to J.C. Watts on Republican Connection to the Council of Conservative Citizens

January 28, 1999


The Honorable J.C. Watts, Jr., Chairman
House Republican Conference
U.S. House of Representatives
1210 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Representative Watts:

We are sure that you are aware of recent newspaper reports in The Washington Post and The New York Times linking two important and high profile members of your party with a white supremacist and anti-semitic group, the Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC). Representative Bob Barr of Georgia, a member of the House Judiciary Committee and one of the thirteen managers in the impeachment trial, and Senate Majority Leader, Senator Trent Lott of Mississippi, were the two named in the various articles. Their linkage to white supremacist and anti-semitic groups in 1999, and their weak denials, are of great concern to all Members of Congress and the American people.

Undoubtedly, groups that are exclusionary, anti-Black and anti-semitic are essentially anti-American. The identification of these high profile Republican leaders with the CCC -- and the CCC's identification with them -- means an identification with the Republican Party generally. The Republican Party does not need an identification with a new CCC that is reminiscent of an old KKK. That not only represents a danger for the Republican Party, it represents a danger and is a moral affront to America.

As the recently elected Chairman of the Republican Conference, your colleagues and the nation look to you for leadership and direction. Thus, we urge you to insure that the Republican Party, its leaders and all of its members clearly and publicly distance themselves from the CCC and any other white supremacist, anti-semitic or hate groups.

Sincerely,

Members of Congress

Jesse L. Jackson, Jr. (D-IL)
Cynthia McKinney (D-GA)
Carolyn Kilpatrick (D-MI)
Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX)
Barbara Lee (D-CA)
Sanford Bishop (D-GA)
Gregory Meeks (D-NY)
William Clay (D-MO)
Eva Clayton (D-NC)
Major Owens (D-NY)
Chaka Fattah (D-PA)
Donald Payne (D-NJ)
Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-OH)

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