Just when you thought it was safe to say that Cliven Bundy’s 15 minutes of fame were up, the conservative folk hero has re-emerged, appearing in a campaign ad for Kamau Bakari, an Independent American Party candidate for Congress in Nevada.
Bundy who became infamous in April of this year when federal authorities attempt to forcibly evict him off of land the rancher had illegally commandeered for cattle grazing. When Bundy refused to comply he became a cause célèbre for many Tea Partiers and right-wingers. However, once some of his reactionary views on race, including that concept that blacks were “better off” as slaves, quickly made him a pariah.
Still, that hasn’t deterred Bakari, a longshot candidate at best to unseat Rep. Dina Titus (D-Nev.)., from procuring his services.
“I know that black folks have had a hard time with, uh, slavery,” Bundy says in the clip. “And, you know, the government was in on it.” Compounding the awkwardness of the two-minute ad is the conversation on race between Bundy and Bakari, who happens to be African-American.
After a clip of Attorney General Eric Holder’s famous “nation of cowards” remark about racial prejudice, Bakari and Bundy have a stilted dialogue while dressed in traditional cowboy garb and flanked by a white horse. “Did he just call me a coward?” Bundy asks incredulously. ”No he called all white folks cowards,” replies Bakari.
Bakari declares that “political correctness is bad for America,” after making a veiled reference to the Donald Sterling controversy. He calls Bundy a “brave white man” and argues that citizens’ ability to say “whatever they want” is under threat.
“I feel ashamed when I hear black folks whining about ‘white folks this,’ ‘white folks that,’ always begging,” says Bakari.
“It’s almost like black folks think white folks owe them something,” Bundy responds.
Bakari and Bundy end their scene by “challenging” Holder to come to Nevada to talk to them about race, which they say he should plenty of time to do since he recently made a trip to Ferguson in the wake of the Michael Brown shooting controversy.
Bundy, who has found himself unwelcome in Republican circles following the backlash to his public statements on race, has since left the GOP and joined the Independent American Party.