One of the causes Andrew Breitbart cared about most passionately was disproving the lie that Tea Party members had hurled the “N-word”–not once, but more than a dozen times–at black members of Congress as they marched through a large crowd of anti-Obamacare protestors on Capitol Hill in March 2010. The mainstream media had used that fabricated charge to malign the Tea Party–and all opposition to Obamacare.
Then-Speaker Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) had also marched through the crowd, hand-in-hand with civil rights veteran Rep. John Lewis (D-GA), in an attempted re-enactment of the civil rights marches of the 1950s and 1960s. Their message was that health care was a right, and that those opposing the march to universal government health care were like the racists of the old Jim Crow days–all the more so, given the president’s own race.
I was there that weekend, and after wandering through the crowd for several hours, I had not seen any evidence of racism. Nor had Pelosi or her colleagues, who made up the “N-word” story to complete their false conceit that health care was a civil right. But the mainstream media faithfully repeated their claims, and the Republican leadership dutifully distanced itself from the protests over something that had never happened.
Today, more than two years later, Obamacare is failing to live up to its own deadlines, and the Supreme Court is widely expected to strike down the so-called “Affordable Care Act” this coming week, in whole or in part. Pelosi has since been stripped of the gavel she brandished through the Tea Party demonstration that day as a symbol of power–dethroned by the very people she mocked, ridiculed, taunted and attempted to provoke.
Thanks to Andrew, the “N-word” story is considered debunked–though the left and the mainstream media occasionally resurrect it–and even some of President Obama’s most outspoken supporters have been forced to concede that his critics might be motivated by something other than racism. If nothing else, the oral arguments on Obamacare this past March opened their eyes to the fact that Tea Party objections to the law were real.
One argument never appeared before the Court, because all nine justices would have laughed at it: the argument that health care is a civil right. The only question is whether, and to what extent, Obamacare violates the Constitution’s protections of the states and the people. Whatever the result this week, it is clear that the defenders of civil rights that day were not Pelosi and her crew, but the Tea Party demonstrators around them.