Advisors to Republican president challenger Mitt Romney reportedly told The Daily Telegraph that Romney would restore the U.S.’s “Anglo-Saxon” relationship with London that President Obama has abandoned.
The racially provocative comments came as Romney is about to leave today for an overseas tour of Britain, Israel and Poland to counter accusations by the Obama campaign that Romney is a “novice” in foreign affairs.
While the Daily Telegraph doesn’t name the advisors, the paper made it clear that the remarks “may prompt accusations of racial insensitivity.”
Romney was giving a speech before the Veterans of Foreign Wars accusing the president of leaking classified info to make himself look good, while his advisors were doing an interview with one of the London newspapers.
“We are part of an Anglo-Saxon heritage, and he feels that the special relationship is special,” the advisor said, adding: “The White House didn’t fully appreciate the shared history we have.”
The advisors said Romney would depart from Obama’s “left-wing” coolness towards London.
The implication of such statements are clear: Obama doesn’t appreciate this special history that the U.S. and Britain share because he’s black and too progressive. The term Anglo-Saxon originally referred to the various tribes of Caucasians who invaded and conquered Great Britain, but eventually the term took on racist connotations when British writers and leaders began to use it in the 18th and 19th century as a justification for imperialism, implying that white Anglo-Saxons were superior to all the black and brown people they were colonizing and oppressing. When the term jumped the ocean and found usage in the United States, it usually was employed in the term White Anglo-Saxon Protestant (WASP), indicating white people whose roots originated in Britain.
Romney’s advisors are certainly aware of the loaded racial history of the term Anglo-Saxon. In using it, one can only assume they meant to imply that the white people of the U.S. and Britain share a history and relationship that President Obama will never understand because he isn’t white and because his father is from Africa. This is another way of calling attention to the president’s race, just as Romney and former New Hampshire Gov. John Sununu have done recently by using the word “foreign” to describe Obama or his policies.
After Romney lands in London today, he will meet tomorrow with Prime Minister David Cameron and other senior British ministers. He also will meet with former Prime Minister Tony Blair before attending two fundraisers and the opening ceremony of the Olympics.