Tom Cotton returns campaign donation from racist leader cited by Dylann Roof | Arkansas Blog

Monday, June 22, 2015

Tom Cotton returns campaign donation from racist leader cited by Dylann Roof

Posted By on Mon, Jun 22, 2015 at 10:06 AM

click to enlarge TOM COTTON: Like other Republicans, he's returned donations from white supremacist leader Earl Holt.
  • TOM COTTON: Like other Republicans, he's returned donations from white supremacist leader Earl Holt.

The Guardian reported yesterday
on Earl Holt — president of the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens, donor to multiple Republican candidates and evident inspiration behind Dylann Roof's racially motivated killing spree in Charleston, South Carolina last week. An online manifesto assumed to be written by Roof cites racist writings from the group's website as informing the evolution of his views.

One of the Republicans who received donations from Holt is Arkansas's U.S. Senator Tom Cotton. The Guardian says Cotton received $1,500 in contributions from Holt, who also gave to U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, Rick Santorum, Rand Paul and others; he donated some $65,000 to GOP candidates in the past few election cycles, the paper reports. Cruz and Paul said they'd be returning the money.

Cotton announced this morning that he too will be returning Holt's donation. In a statement, Cotton said, "We have initiated a refund of Mr. Holt’s contribution. I do not agree with his hateful beliefs and language and believe they are hurtful to our country.”

Here's how Roof spoke of the Council of Conservative Citizens:

Holt, 62, is the president of the Council of Conservative Citizens (CofCC), a Missouri-based activist organisation cited by the author of a manifesto-style text that was posted on a website registered in Roof’s name along with photographs of the gunman. The FBI said on Saturday it was investigating the website.

The manifesto’s author, who has been widely reported but not verified as Roof, recounted learning about “brutal black on white murders” from the CofCC website.

“At this moment I realised that something was very wrong,” the manifesto said.

The Council of Conservative Citizens grew out of the White Citizens' Councils which sprang up in the civil rights-era South to defend Jim Crow laws and oppose integration, including in ArkansasThe Daily Beast writes of how conservative politicians have long danced with the "CofCC," including Mike Huckabee. Shortly after becoming lieutenant governor in 1993, Huckabee delivered a videotaped address to the group, although he evidently backed away from an invitation to appear in person the following year.

Here's a document from the Anti-Defamation League about the CofCC. The group has this to say about race on a page titled "Statement of Principles":

We believe the United States is a European country and that Americans are part of the European people. We believe that the United States derives from and is an integral part of European civilization and the European people and that the American people and government should remain European in their composition and character. We therefore oppose the massive immigration of non-European and non-Western peoples into the United States that threatens to transform our nation into a non-European majority in our lifetime. We believe that illegal immigration must be stopped, if necessary by military force and placing troops on our national borders; that illegal aliens must be returned to their own countries; and that legal immigration must be severely restricted or halted through appropriate changes in our laws and policies. We also oppose all efforts to mix the races of mankind, to promote non-white races over the European-American people through so-called “affirmative action” and similar measures, to destroy or denigrate the European-American heritage, including the heritage of the Southern people, and to force the integration of the races.

The Council of Conservative Citizens said on its website that it was "deeply saddened" by the Charleston killings. Earl Holt released a statement on Sunday denying any responsibility for Roof's action "merely because he gleaned accurate information from our website." Here it is, posted on a racist website called American Renaissance:

It has been brought to the attention of the Council of Conservative Citizens that Dylann Roof–the alleged perpetrator of mass murder in Charleston this week–credits the CofCC website for his knowledge of black-on-white violent crime.

This is not surprising: The CofCC is one of perhaps three websites in the world that accurately and honestly report black-on-white violent crime, and in particular, the seemingly endless incidents involving black-on-white murder.

The CofCC website exists because media either “spike” such stories, or intentionally obscure the race of black offenders. Indeed, at its national convention some years ago, the Society of Professional Journalists adopted this tactic as a formal policy.

The CofCC is hardly responsible for the actions of this deranged individual merely because he gleaned accurate information from our website.

We are no more responsible for the actions of this sad young man, than the Olin Corporation was for manufacturing the ammo misused by Colin Ferguson to murder six whites on the Long Island Railroad in 1993.

The CofCC does not advocate illegal activities of any kind, and never has. I would gladly compare the honesty and law-abiding nature of our membership against that of any other group.

Earl Holt III, President, CofCC

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