Democrats and their left-wing allies blasted Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Monday for making reference to the “Anglo-American” legal tradition, which they construed as racist.
The problem: not only was the reference factually accurate, but it was the same reference that former President Barack Obama had made frequently throughout his career.
Sessions was speaking to a conference of the National Sheriffs’ Association. He said: “The office of sheriff is a critical part of the Anglo-American heritage of law enforcement.”
The media highlighted that remark, and the left pounced on it — as documented by Twitchy:
“The office of sheriff is a critical part of the Anglo American heritage of law enforcement,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said to law enforcement officials in Washington. “We must never erode this historic office.” pic.twitter.com/H2pBEsbkEQ
— POLITICO (@politico) February 12, 2018
Yes, our Attorney General just said this. Out loud. https://t.co/ldXCgCYarx
— ACLU (@ACLU) February 12, 2018
Do you know anyone who says “Anglo-American heritage” in a sentence? What could possibly be the purpose of saying that other than to pit Americans against each other? For the chief law enforcement officer to use a dog whistle like that is appalling. Best NO vote I ever cast.
— Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) February 12, 2018
Jeff Sessions did a speech and said “the office of Sheriff is a critical part of the Anglo-American heritage of law enforcement.” He wanted to go on record with the ANGLO-AMERICAN description. He went full white supremacy, and every Black and non-white sheriff should be insulted pic.twitter.com/F0PYS5j7es
— Tariq Nasheed (@tariqnasheed) February 12, 2018
The left has long argued that Sessions is a racist, and his reference to the “Anglo-American” tradition was immediately taken as proof of that claim.
However, the fact that the American legal system evolved from an Anglo-American tradition — as well as Judeo-Christian principles — is entirely accurate and not even controversial among legal scholars.
And, as National Review Online editor Charles C. W. Cooke noted, Obama himself used the reference as well:
Here’s then-Senator Obama using the term “Anglo-American” as correctly and appropriately as Sessions did, in a speech from 2006. We must not consent to lose our language at the behest of the historically illiterate. https://t.co/Oc6JCM9GRY pic.twitter.com/EDx1TSfRrm
— Charles C. W. Cooke (@charlescwcooke) February 12, 2018
Cooke tweeted several other occasions on which Obama, formerly a lecturer in law at the University of Chicago, used the reference.
Sessions’s critics appear to have confused the term “Anglo-American” with the term “Anglo-Saxon,” which is commonly used as a euphemism for “white.”
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named to Forward’s 50 “most influential” Jews in 2017. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.