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A Vestige of Slavery': Rep. Steve Cohen Says Holder Wouldn't be in Contempt if He Looked Like... Al Pacino?


"I think there is a racial element and it's a vestige of slavery and Jim Crow."

In a bizarre segment on Current TV's "The Young Turks," Rep. Steve Cohen (R-Tenn.) argued the contempt charges against Attorney General Eric Holder are a "vestige of slavery and Jim Crow" and Congress wouldn't have pursued the charges if the attorney general looked like actor Al Pacino. No, really.

It really didn't take long for the Left to pull the race card after the House contempt vote Thursday. While Holder is undoubtedly a black man, to my recollection lawmakers have never cited that as a reason for the contempt charges.

(Related: 'Tragic Witch Hunt': Rep. Sheila Jackson Jackson Lee Says Holder Contempt Charges Are Racist)

Buzzfeed reporter Michael Hastings kicked off the segment and told host Cenk Uygur that Holder is an "enticing target" for Republicans because he is not only the first "African-American" attorney general but also very close to President Obama.

Uygur asked Hastings to clarify whether he was insinuating that there was a racial element to the contempt charges.

"He is one of Obama's guys," he said. "Is it a coincidence that the first contempt vote was brought, for an attorney general, was brought against an African-American attorney general... I don't think so."

"Michael, I agree with you," Cohen interjected. "And i think it was race. And i think it was the second step in Joe Wilson: 'You Lie.' That wouldn't of happened if the President of the United States looked like John White and if the attorney general looked like Al Pacino, or whoever."

Cohen was most likely referring to the previous instance where Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.), who after hearing Obama promise that illegal immigrations wouldn't be covered under the Affordable Care Act, shouted "You lie!" in the middle of the president's address.

"And I think there is a racial element and it's a vestige of slavery and Jim Crow, we need to rectify those problems and we're not doing it," Cohen added.

Hastings agreed and replied, "It just doesn't seem like he did anything wrong, that's the strange thing. There is no smoking gun tying Attorney General Holder, as far as I can tell to this operation."

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, has repeatedly said the contempt charges do not indicate the attorney general was involved in Fast and Furious only that he has refused to comply with a duly issued subpoena.

Watch some of Cohen's questionable assertions via Current TV here:

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