CNN Has Finally Had Enough of Rick Santorum - Rolling Stone
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CNN Has Finally Had Enough of Rick Santorum

After weeks of delay, the news network ended the former GOP senator’s contract over racist remarks about Native Americans

CNN Has Finally Had Enough of Rick Santorum

Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum arrives in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020, before President Donald Trump arrives to speak. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

AP

CNN has fired former Republican Senator Rick Santorum over racist and false remarks he made weeks ago about Native Americans. The Huffington Post broke the news Saturday, citing a senior executive at the network. CNN has since confirmed the report.

While speaking at an event organized by Young America’s Foundation last month, the now-former CNN senior political commentator falsely and callously claimed Native American people have had no influence on U.S. culture and said there was “nothing” in America before white colonists arrived.

“We birthed a nation from nothing. I mean, there was nothing here,” Santorum said. “I mean, yes, we have Native Americans, but candidly, there isn’t much Native American culture in American culture.”

Prominent Indigenous-led organizations demanded Santorum’s immediate dismissal, including the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) and other civil rights groups.

NCAI’s president, Fawn Sharp, issued a scathing statement condemning Santorum’s remarks and calling him an “unhinged and embarrassing racist.” Sharp also addressed Santorum’s white supremacist ideas about Native peoples: “To correct the record, what European colonizers found in the Americas were thousands of complex, sophisticated, and sovereign Tribal Nations, each with millennia of distinct cultural, spiritual and technological development,” Sharp said. “Over millennia, they bred, cultivated and showed the world how to utilize such plants as cotton, rubber, chocolate, corn, potatoes, tomatoes and tobacco. Imagine the history of the United States without the economic contributions of cotton and tobacco alone. It’s inconceivable.”

But CNN remained quiet on the matter, even after Santorum refused to apologize during an appearance on a CNN primetime show when he was asked about the blowback. According to Variety’s Brian Steinberg, the network’s executives “were not pleased” by Santorum’s lack of an apology during the segment, but they should not have been surprised. The network knew all about the right-wing extremist and hired in 2017 him anyway.

During his political career, the former senator compared same-sex marriage to 9/11 and sex between gay people with incest. He blamed Social Security’s insolvency on abortion. He claimed Planned Parenthood was founded on the eugenics movement and on racism.

In 2012, Santorum ignored the fact that more white Americans receive public assistance than blacks but still spewed the racist troupe anyway saying, “I don’t want to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money.” In 2015, Rolling Stone even put together a list of just some of the hateful remarks Santorum has uttered over the years. But despite his record, CNN welcomed the senator with open arms.

So, on Saturday CNN was finally forced to reverse a decision they should not have made in the first place. Bye, Rick.

In This Article: CNN, Racism, Rick Santorum

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