Who Is Maxine Waters?

“[Maxine Waters] is one of the most self-serving, hate-filled, race-obsessed politicians in America. [And] the Democratic Party doesn’t just embrace her. It kneels at her feet.”    — Michelle Malkin

Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) has been in the news of late, due to accusations of ethics violations being leveled against her and investigated by the House Ethics Committee. While formal charges have yet to be announced, she is accused of inappropriately using her influence to get favorable treatment (i.e., a $12 million bailout in TARP funds) for minority-owned OneUnited Bank, where she and her husband just happened to have substantial investments. (It seems that the bank had been heavily invested in Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac, so it was hit REAL hard when the government “intervened” in those corporations in 2008.) What’s more, her husband was once on the bank’s board of directors.

This isn’t the first time Waters has aided businesses with links to her family, either, to their mutual benefit. A 2004 L.A. Times article claimed that her relatives — e.g., son Edward and daughter Karen — profited to the tune of over $1 million (over 8 years) from Maxine’s connections. She indignantly denies any wrongdoing in all cases, of course. (She even manages, in this latest case, to turn it around and imply racism by President Bush’s administration.) But, that’s not the focus of this post.

Maxine Waters speaking from a podiumI don’t know about you, but I didn’t really know much about Congresswoman Waters. Sure, I knew she is Black, quite liberal, outspoken, and influential. But, beyond that, she’s never really been on my radar before. Now she is, and I’ve found out a few things that give me a much better idea of who & what she is.

Before being elected to Congress in 1991, Ms. Waters served for 15 years in the California State Assembly. While there, she campaigned for divestment of state pension funds from the then-apartheid nation of South Africa. A noble cause. Since being elected to the House of Representatives for California’s 35th District, Waters has… well… not done much of benefit. Sure, as a good liberal, she fights for “social justice” and housing and education issues, etc. But many of the bills she tends to sponsor or vote for (e.g., Obamacare; the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009) and other things she gets in the news for (e.g. the debate over King Drew Medical Center; the current ethics hearings) do more damage, in my opinion, than good. (She was one of thirteen (i.e., one-third) Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) members to vote against the DISCLOSE Act, but only because she/they couldn’t stomach the NRA exemption.)

Five years ago, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Los Angeles honored Maxine Waters with the Martin Luther King Legacy Award. Are you kidding me?! Based on what I’ve read/seen of how Waters and her fellow race-baiters in “black leadership” (e.g., Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson) have co-opted MLK’s name and twisted his dream, I daresay Rev. King shook his head in dismay & exasperation when he looked “down from above” on that award banquet.

In order to get a better feel for Representative Waters’ attitudes and positions, let me bring a few issues and events to your attention.

During the 1992 riots that devastated so much of the 35th District in South Central Los Angeles, the livelihoods of thousands of Waters’ constituents were ruined by looting and arson. Did Waters publicly condemn the violence or take the rioters to task? On the contrary, she tried to defend the criminals by renaming & reframing what happened.

If you call it a riot it sounds like it was just a bunch of crazy people who went out and did bad things for no reason. I maintain it was somewhat understandable, if not acceptable.” So, what did she call it? A “rebellion… a spontaneous reaction to a lot of injustice and a lot of alienation and frustration.”

In case that wasn’t enough justification, Waters added some pathos with statements such as:

There were mothers who took this as an opportunity to take some milk, to take some bread, to take some shoes. Maybe they shouldn’t have done it, but the atmosphere was such that they did it. They are not crooks.”

Look, I understand there’s something about getting caught up in a “mob mentality”, but people still have free will whether or not to participate. Does Ms. Waters believe that two wrongs can make a right? If so, then how does stealing TVs (or shoes), raiding liquor stores & local markets, setting fire to stores & cars, and other riot-related crimes help one “deal with”, let alone correct, injustice? Did any of it benefit Rodney King? Does the insertion of a “race factor” make it excusable? Why didn’t she stick up for the many Koreans whose shops were ransacked and/or destroyed by rioters? (Perhaps she did so later, but it obviously wasn’t her first instinct.) I don’t get it, but maybe it’s just that “progressive logic” I don’t understand….

Waters is also of the ilk that believe nefarious conspiracies have been perpetrated by certain governmental parties upon her “people”. For example, she believes that the drug epidemic in urban America can be blamed on the CIA who (apparently) created the problem by encouraging drug use in the inner cities. No matter that Blacks are not the only ones affected by the drug epidemic. (And make no mistake — being Black trumps all in Waters’ mind.) No matter that there is no rational explanation for why the CIA would do such a thing. No matter that this theory was exposed as a hoax by the Washington Post, L.A. Times, and New York Times, among many others. Waters still clings to this ridiculous theory because it fits with her philosophy of minorities (particularly Blacks) being forever victimized by the powerful and more privileged.

If I never do anything else in this career as a member of Congress,” she vowed, “I’m going to make somebody pay for what they’ve done to my community and to my people.”

Then, there is Waters’ support for escaped cop-killer Joanne Chesimard (aka Assata Olugbala Shakur), a former leader of the Black Panthers and the Black Liberation Army. Chesimard didn’t just shoot NJ State Trooper Werner Foerster once; she shot him again at point-blank range to finish the job. That was in 1973, and Chesimard was sentenced to life in prison for Foerster’s death, plus armed robbery and other felonies. She escaped in 1979 and eventually fled to Cuba, where Fidel Castro gave her political asylum. Congress passed a resolution urging her extradition to America. But, Rep. Waters took it upon herself to personally write Castro to plead for extended asylum for Chesimard. She even had the gall to compare Chesimard to Martin Luther King, claiming “She was persecuted as a result of her political beliefs and affiliations.”

No, Maxine! Chesimard is a dangerous militant who shot a man in cold blood (among other crimes). She deserves to be thrown back in an American high-security prison. Better yet, give her the death penalty. But, Castro took pity on poor, persecuted Ms. Chesimard, and she still lives in Cuba to this day. Meanwhile, there have been several extradition pleas, and in 2005 the FBI classified her a “domestic terrorist” and began offering $1 million for assistance in her capture. Sadly, she has become somewhat of a folk hero to the hip-hop community — partly because of her “cause,” partly because of her being the step-aunt of the late Tupac Shakur. But, I digress…

Maxine Waters speaks out

Maxine Waters speaks out (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Oh, yeah. Is it any surprise that Rep. Waters thinks Castro is the bees knees, too?

Here is what Michelle Malkin wrote about Waters 10 years ago:

This is a woman who danced the electric slide with Crips and Bloods gang members, and then noted in her official biography that ‘Many young people, including those in the hip-hop music community, praise her for her fearless support and understanding of young people and their efforts at self-expression.’

This is a woman who visited the home of Damian Williams, the infamous thug who ‘expressed himself’ by hurling a chunk of concrete at white truck driver Reginald Denny and performing a victory dance over the innocent bystander.

This is a woman who rose to power by badmouthing the white ‘Establishment,’ and then shamelessly abused it to secure an ambassadorship to the Bahamas for her husband -– a former pro football player and car salesman whose main qualification was having traveled to the island for a vacation.

This is a woman who repeatedly excoriates ‘the white press’ whenever negative stories about black politicians appear.”

Not much has changed, apparently.

Of course, Waters includes many liberal/progressive causes in her repertoire, as well. She consistently votes for human embryonic stem-cell research and against anything that would ban or otherwise restrict any form of abortion. She is for anything that furthers the gay agenda. She never met a bailout or stimulus package she didn’t like. She supports any legislation backed by the climate change alarmists. She has an aversion to free-trade agreements. She loves gun control and the idea of suing makers & sellers of guns. Open borders and looser immigration policies are just fine by Ms. Waters. The AFL-CIO gives her a 100% pro-union voting record. Like many of her fellow “progressives”, Waters appears to have an affinity for socialistic policies, having expressed, for example, her desire to nationalize all U.S. oil companies. You get the picture, right?

Not surprisingly, Waters is also an outspoken anti-war critic. As chair of the Out of Iraq Caucus, she has been on the frontlines not only pushing for immediate troop withdrawal from Iraq but making accusations against President Bush and trying to get V.P. Cheney impeached for supposed “false statements” about the war.

The president is a liar. Dick Cheney, the chief architect of the Big Lie, is not only a liar, he is a thief.”

What do the Beltway watchdogs think of Representative Waters? The Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) listed her among the corrupt members of Congress in its 2005, 2006, & 2009 reports. She has an affinity for earmarks, too. The Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) named her the June 2009 Porker of the Month. Why, specifically? Waters tried to get federal funds earmarked for the “Maxine Waters Employment Preparation Center.”

Maxine Waters glares at someone

Glaring Maxine Waters (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

Maxine Waters is a powerful player in Washington, with extremely few in her own party willing to take her on, particularly when there’s an opportunity for her to play the race card. Joe Lieberman tried it. He once expressed some “reservations about affirmative action” and gave “tentative support to school vouchers” (which would benefit minority children, by the way). Fairly moderate positions, all in all. When Lieberman got put on the 2000 Democratic ticket for V.P., Ms. Waters demanded to know why she hadn’t first been consulted on the matter and insisted that Lieberman “explain” himself before the black caucus of the Democratic National Committee (DNC). As a result, Lieberman effectively backed off from his earlier statements in order to get the support of Waters and her compatriots. That is, he was bullied into submission.

Whether Congresswoman Waters is found guilty of the current ethics charges or not, let’s be clear. This woman is the epitome of black racism & elitist progressivism in American politics. She has been peddling her race-baiting garbage and double standards in & from the House for nearly 20 years, and she needs to go.

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