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Tancredo: Send Obama 'back' to Kenya

Former congressman Tom Tancredo's speech at the National Tea Party was a misstep that gave organizers their only lasting, negative coverage. At a Sunday afternoon tea party rally in Greenville, S.C., where he was the keynote speaker, Tancredo stepped in it again.

[Tancredo] said Americans have reached the point where "we're going to have to pray that we can hold on to this country."

As for Obama, Tancredo said, "If his wife says Kenya is his homeland, why don't we just send him back?"

The reference is to this speech by Michelle Obama, in which she mentioned her husband's famous trip to Kenya in 2006 -- she called it, in a slip, his "home country," not "homeland." Kenya was one of several African countries visited by the Obamas on the 2006 trip, but the only one to which he had familial ties -- hence the word "home," which she hesitates over just slightly.

What does this say about Tancredo -- a minor figure now, but one who's in some demand to speak at tea party and immigration restriction events? The first lady's flub went largely unnoticed outside of fringe media, where it has become a minor sensation, with one video of the remark clocking more than 300,000 YouTube views. So, that's where Tancredo got it. Where he got the idea that it would be politically wise to call for deporting the president to Africa... well, that's not hard to figure out.

I haven't seen video of this speech, but I have found this video of another speaker at the Greenville rally -- one who draws oohs and laughs by joking about Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R-S.C.) sexuality.

By David Weigel  |  April 19, 2010; 8:09 AM ET
Categories:  Fringe  | Tags: Colorado, Government, Kenya, Michelle Obama, Tea, Tom Tancredo, US House of Representatives, United States  
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