The Senate's embattled majority leader is moving ahead with an “African Americans for Harry Reid” event this week as he seeks to weather a political firestorm sparked by his racially insensitive remarks about President Barack Obama.
The timing of the launch of the “African Americans for Harry Reid” campaign group, which is scheduled for Thursday in Las Vegas, is coincidental. The luncheon had been scheduled for weeks.
Reid has apologized for remarks he made in 2008 that described Obama as "light skinned" and "with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one." The comments were reported in a new book titled, “Game Change.”
Despite the controversy playing out in the national media, Democratic political strategist Donna Brazile is scheduled to headline the group's launch event in Nevada. She told The Hill in an e-mail Monday that the launch "is still on, and I'm still on track to go."
The Reid staffer who's number is listed as the RSVP line for the luncheon said her phone has been "ringing off the hook all day" with replies for the event.
Reid's campaign told The Hill that the senator has been reaching out to leaders in the African American community over the past few days. Reid is facing a challenging reelection race this year.
There's also a Facebook group called African Americans for Harry Reid where details of the launch are posted, but Reid's campaign characterized the Facebook group as a "community group," not an official campaign entity.
Reid's campaign would not speculate on how many guests they expect, or how many had been invited. The guest list for the Facebook group is also hidden. The event is free of charge.
H/T: Bob Cusack
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