MSNBC's Chris Matthews unleashed a scathing attack Wednesday against critics of President Barack Obama, arguing that efforts to repeal the new federal health care law and calls for impeachment are driven by racism.
On location at the event marking the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, the fiery pundit said that, unlike many conservatives who demanded Obama's birth certificate, racists in previous eras were up front about their prejudice.
"At least they were honest back then," Matthews said. "Today in American politics you have people like Donald Trump who hangs around with Mitt Romney, talking about the president being an illegal immigrant, basically being a con artist on a street corner. You've got people talking about nullification of the law of the land. You got people talking about impeachment like [Tom] Coburn. You've got Ted Cruz out there. They never say their problem with Obama is that he's black. But look at the pattern. The pattern is rejection of his legitimacy at the first point, saying he's not really here legally. It's rejection of the law he passed, the landmark bill passed in 2010. It's an attempt to impeach him on no grounds."
Matthews added, "These guys today use all the techniques of nullification and talking about illegitimacy and accusing the president of being a crook basically for even being president 'cause he's here illegally. They talk about impeaching him on grounds they can't even come up with. At least in the old days they were honest about it. Today, they're not."