Oscar winner Morgan Freeman took on the tea party right last week, pointing directly to the corporate-based movement's racist intentions when attacking President Obama.
Appearing on CNN's Piers Morgan Tonight on Sept. 23, the generally easygoing actor said, "Their stated policy, publicly stated, is to do whatever it takes to see to it that Obama only serves one term. What underlines that? Screw the country. We are going to do ... whatever we can to get this black man outta here."
He continued, "It is a racist thing ... It just shows the weak, dark underside of America. We're supposed to be better than that. That's why all those people were in tears when he was elected."
Freeman began the interview by indicating that racism, instead of lessening, had become worse since Obama's election.
He predicted however that the Republican effort would fail. "They're not going to get rid of Obama either," he said. "I think they're shooting themselves in the head."
GOP hopeful Herman Cain, who won a Florida straw poll after last week's debate, took issue with Freeman, saying he was "shortsighted."
Democratic Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, on the other hand, when asked about tea party racism, said, "One of the curses of racism in this country is that you're always asking yourself if the stuff that goes wrong is on account of racism. I hope it's not."
He went on to say that the GOP's unrelenting opposition to the president's policies might be "seditious." The governor then said, "The notion that the singular focus of the hard right today is to defeat this president, even if there's an idea he puts forward to help - that they used to support - is incredibly worrisome to me and a very different political climate, I think, than we've been dealing with for a long time."
A 2010 report by the NAACP links the tea party to giving "platforms to anti-Semites, racists and bigots."
John Wojcik, writing for peoplesworld.org, says, "The NAACP study finds ... that among the tea party ranks are many who are obsessed with issues of race, national identity and a host of other social issues."