press release


News from Progress Michigan

February 19, 2015

Contact: Sam Inglot, 616-916-0574,

MIGOP Chair Hopeful Uses Racist and Offensive Language to Describe Asian American Michiganders

Republicans have a problem with cultural insensitivity from sitting, prospective leaders 

LANSING — The Michigan GOP has a long, problematic history of its leaders using racial and derogatory terms for minority groups, the latest example coming from Michigan Republican Party chair hopeful Norm Hughes.

On his website, Hughes refers to Asian Americans as “Orientals” — an outdated term that is best used to classify rugs, not people, and harkens back to an age when the U.S. government passed exclusionary laws to bar Asians from entering the country.

“The GOP cannot concede 94% of the black vote, 71% of the Hispanic vote, 60% of females, youth and Jewish vote. Republicans get less than 15% of the Muslim vote and a fraction of the growing Oriental vote,” Hughes wrote on his website.

Hughes’ statement is one of many examples of Michigan Republicans using offensive rhetoric and imagery. The comment comes on the heels of numerous inflammatory statements made by MIGOP National Committeeman Dave Agema, who referred to Muslims as “camel jockeys” and has a long history of racist and insensitive comments against the LGBT community and other minority groups. During the 2010 U.S. Senate race, Republican nominee Pete Hoekstra came under fire for a racist television ad that featured offensive stereotypes about Asians.

“The Michigan GOP has a systemic problem within their ranks in how they treat and view communities of color,”said Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan. “This just goes to show how truly out of touch they are and that they don’t care about minorities as people — they only care about them as votes. It seems as though the Michigan GOP is left with a choice between the failed economic priorities of Mitt Romney and the truly racist who have not come to grips with the reality that is modern day Michigan.”



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Post comment