Rep. Clyburn: Obama Will Win Re-Election
The South Carolina lawmaker also talks about Herman Cain and voter suppression.
JC: I think they're good. I didn't have a problem with the Tea Party; I don't have a problem with this party. When we were participating in the sit-ins, we were called communists. Rosa Parks was asked to give up her seat to a white guy. She needed a communist to tell her that was wrong?
TR: Black conservative Republicans making their voices and views heard include Rep. Allen West of Florida, the only GOP member of the CBC. How is it working out?
JC: You don't have to pay any money to be a member; all you have to do is show up.
TR: Does West show up?
JC: Not anymore. He hasn't been here for a long time. He's always welcome. He didn't quit before it was time to pay for lunch. I want him to come back when the time rolls around again for him to pay for lunch.
TR: How do you view Herman Cain and his statement that African Americans have been "brainwashed" into not being open-minded about voting for the GOP?
JC: I don't know why people feel that if you don't think the way they think, something's wrong with you. I don't know where people get that notion from. I don't think the way Cain thinks. Cain came to me asking my help to defeat -- of all things -- a minimum wage bill. Now, I just smiled. I couldn't bring myself to laugh at him.
I listened to him; I was very cordial, very civil, and went on and passed the bill. If this guy feels he was not brainwashed when he did not participate in the civil rights activities taking place on his college campus when he was at Morehouse College ... I went to Morehouse College from South Carolina State to participate in sit-ins. I wish I had known that he was on that campus and not participating. I would have visited him in his room.
Mary C. Curtis, an award-winning Charlotte, N.C.-based journalist, is a contributor to The Root, Fox News Charlotte, NPR, Nieman Watchdog and Creative Loafing, where she writes a weekly column on DNC 2012. She was national correspondent for Politics Daily. Follow her on Twitter.