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CNN pundit defends Rupert Murdoch’s racial tweet: He just meant that Obama is a ‘magic negro’

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CNN political commentator and Donald Trump supporter Jeffrey Lord on Thursday defended Rupert Murdoch’s suggestion that Barack Obama was not a “real black president” by noting that the News Corporation founder really meant that the president was a “magic Negro.”

On Wednesday, Murdoch had sent out a tweet in support of Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson, and then added: “What about a real black President who can properly address the racial divide? And much else.”

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In defense of Murdoch, Lord pointed to a 2007 Los Angeles Times column by David Ehrenstein titled “Obama the ‘Magic Negro.'”

“By that, he meant someone like Sidney Poitier, he specifically reference, and other African-Americans — Will Smith, etc., who are not seen as — quote, unquote — threatening,” Lord explained. “And not — quote — authentically black like, say, Al Sharpton. Again, these were his suggestions.”

“So, I don’t really think that Mr. Murdoch has said anything new here that hasn’t been said,” he continued. “I just think that this is an old argument that somehow has popped up here with Mr. Murdoch. But it’s been said before, and by an African-American.”

Democratic strategist Keith Boykin saw things differently.

“I don’t know what Rupert Murdoch is doing,” he remarked. “I think it’s a reflection of some sort of white privilege or billionaire entitlement that has forced him to make these comments on Twitter. But it’s quite offensive.”

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“Here’s a guy who is not black, he’s not even an American, telling African-Americans who we should support for our president,” Boykin noted. “The idea that this comment would be made by Rupert Murdoch at all is problematic regardless of the apology.”

The Democratic strategist said that he was “tired of this conservative sort of disingenuous concern about black people. The comment was framed in a sense by Rupert Murdoch, ‘Well black people should be really upset because Obama hasn’t done enough for them.'”

“But when was Rupert Murdoch ever concerned about what Obama’s done for black people or about what black people need in the first place. If he were concerned, he would probably listen to black people who would tell him that they support Obama far more than they support Ben Carson.”

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Watch the video below from CNN, broadcast Oct. 8, 2015.

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Elections 2016

Vietnamese women strive to clear war-era mines

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Inching across a field littered with Vietnam war-era bombs, Ngoc leads an all-women demining team clearing unexploded ordnance that has killed tens of thousands of people -- including her uncle.

"He died in an explosion. I was haunted by memories of him," Le Thi Bich Ngoc tells AFP as she oversees the controlled detonation of a cluster bomb found in a sealed-off site in central Quang Tri province.

More than 6.1 million hectares of land in Vietnam remain blanketed by unexploded munitions -- mainly dropped by US bombers -- decades after the war ended in 1975.

At least 40,000 Vietnamese have since died in related accidents. Victims are often farmers who accidentally trigger explosions, people salvaging scrap metal, or children who mistake bomblets for toys.

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Elections 2016

Chief Justice John Roberts issues New Year’s Eve warning to stand up for democracy

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In a progressive welcoming move, Chief Justice John Roberts issued his New Year's Eve annual report urging his fellow federal judges to stand up for democracy.

"In our age, when social media can instantly spread rumor and false information on a grand scale, the public's need to understand our government, and the protections it provides, is ever more vital," he wrote. "We should celebrate our strong and independent judiciary, a key source of national unity and stability."

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Trump’s next 100 days will dictate whether he can be re-elected or not — here’s why

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According to CNN pollster-in-residence Harry Enten, Donald Trump's next 100 days -- which could include an impeachment trial in the Senate -- will hold the key to whether he will remain president in 2020.

As Eten explains in a column for CNN, "His [Trump's] approval rating has been consistently low during his first term. Yet his supporters could always point out that approval ratings before an election year have not historically been correlated with reelection success. But by mid-March of an election year, approval ratings, though, become more predictive. Presidents with low approval ratings in mid-March of an election year tend to lose, while those with strong approval ratings tend to win in blowouts and those with middling approval ratings usually win by small margins."

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