Former RNC Chair Haley Barbour Dodges 6 Separate Questions on Confederate Flag


Former Mississippi Governor and Republican National Committee Chairman Haley Barbour dodged no less than six separate questions on whether or not he supported flying the Confederate flag during an appearance on MSNBC’s Morning Joe.

“First of all, what do you think of [South Carolina governor] Nikki Haley‘s decision, change of heart about the Confederate flag in her state?” host Mika Brzezinski asked.

But Barbour didn’t take a position, simply saying that it was “South Carolina’s decision… That’s who ought to decide how they’re going to decorate their state capitol ground. And that’s their decision, should be their decision.”

But Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson pressed Barbour on the issue. “What would be your view on that question, as to whether it’s time to retire that symbol?”

“I stated my view, Gene, very — it’s up to the people of Mississippi,” he said. “When we did this before, I did not make a public statement about this. I had been national party chairman, been Republican National Chairman and I thought anything that I said would be considered, ‘That’s the Republican position.’”

“You are no longer governor,” contributor Mike Barnicle noted. “What’s Haley Barbour’s position on it? What’s your position personally as a resident of Mississippi?”

“I’m not offended by our flag or the Confederate flag for that matter,” Barbour said. “But some people are. And the ones who have to deal in Congress, the ones that have to deal in the legislature, the ones that have to deal in the county governments, they’re the ones who ought to take the leadership, not the has-beens.”

But Barnicle pressed him even further noting a poll that found that 50% of Mississippins also support secession. “What is your position, though? Haley Barbour’s position?”

“My position is anybody that believes those kind of polls needs to learn more about polling. I would be very interested in who took such a poll and what the question really was,” Barbour responded.

“Haley Barbour, I got to tell you, it just sort of seems a little bit like a cop out to leave it to others to decide,” Brzezinski said. “Either you have an opinion in your heart or you don’t.”

“Well, in my heart, I have this to say to you, while I was governor of Mississippi, Mississippi became the only state in the country to use state money, taxpayers’ money to build a civil rights museum,” Barbour responded.

Brzezinski tried one more time to try to get Barbour to take a position, any position, on the flag. “Haley, just shouldn’t that flag be in that museum?”

“Will be,” Barbour said. “Will be in that museum.”

Watch, via MSNBC:

[Image via screenshot/MSNBC]
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