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MSNBC Contributor: 'Rick Santorum is a Homophobe and a Bigot

"I find it utterly fascinating, when white people think they know how black people think," said Williams

MSNBC contributor Jimmy Williams lashed out at Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum on Now with Alex Wagner Tuesday, culminating with the accusation that the former Pennsylvania Senator is "a homophobe and a bigot."

Wagner began the segment by presenting to the bipartisan opinion panel an excerpt from a December 27 New York Times editorial board piece on Texas Rep. Ron Paul, that said Ron Paul "disqualified himself for the presidency by peddling claptrap proposals"and "opposing the Civil Rights Act of 1964." Williams immediately took the opportunity to shift the conversation to some of his more general and aggressive opinions.

"I find it utterly fascinating, when white people think they know how black people think," said Williams, who is a senior strategist for United Republic, an anti-Citizens United organization. Williams' odd observation was in reference to claims of controversial comments on welfare made by Santorum Sunday. When discussing entitlements at an Iowa town hall event, Santorum reportedly said "I don’t want to make black people’s lives better by giving them somebody else’s money. I want to give them the opportunity to go out and earn the money and provide for themselves and their families.”

In video of the event it is not clear whether Santorum actually said "black" people, or simply stumbled over his words. ABC News video of the controversial comment at (2:10):

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After Williams' first noteworthy remark, he engaged in a back-and-forth with panelist S.E. Cupp, where his rhetoric only sharpened:

“I find it absolutely fascinating when men think they know how to tell women what to do with their bodies,” Williams added. “What in God’s name are these people thinking?”

"Look, this is taken completely out of context," Cupp responded."Rick Santorum talks about social economics all the time."

"That was the only thing he ever talked about in the Senate, was abortion" interrupted Williams. "When was the last time Rick Santorum ever had an abortion"

"He talks about how two-person families are better economically for the country," said Cupp. "He talks about how conservative social policies are better for white people and for black people."

“Hang on, I take great offense to that as a gay man making plenty of money,” interjected Williams once again. “I can’t go raise a kid as well as a mom and a dad can?”

“That’s not what he just said— you’re taking things out of context,” Cupp insisted.

“That’s what he says all the time!” Williams shot back. “Rick Santorum is a homophobe and a bigot. Let’s call it what it is.”

In an interview with Sean Hannity on FOX News Monday night, Santorum could not confirm or deny the "black people" comment because he did not recall it, and hadn't heard "the context of the question."

“I haven’t heard it," said Santorum. "All I can say is that I don’t single out any one group of people. That’s one thing I don’t do. I don’t divide people by group or race or class.

“I condemn all forms of racism,” he added.

Raw Story Video of the heated debate on MSNBC, and host Alex Wagner ending the conversation by presenting "In that comment, he's singling out black folks in particular," as if it were fact:

One last thing…
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