Thursday, February 21, 2008

Senator Chris Buttars lies to FOX 13 about Brown v. Board comment

Senator Chris Buttars is now lying about comments he made on KVNU’s For the People August 21, 2006 regarding Brown v. Board of Education. We were interviewing Senator Buttars about an effort to “reconfirm” judges. The disucssion turned toward the role of the judiciary in protecting minority rights. Senator Buttars incredulously made the assertion that he didn’t know of a circumstance where the judiciary protected the rights of the minority. I offered Brown v. Board of Education as an example, to which Senator Buttars replied that it was. “wrong to begin with”.

I pressed Senator Buttars for an explanation, but he refused.

The account that he has given FOX 13 is patently untrue, as you can hear in the clips. At no point in the original conversation did Senator Buttars ever praise Brown v. Board, nor did he offer an explanation.

The next day, the comments were in the Salt Lake Tribune, and the backlash was substantial. We called Senator Buttars to offer him an opportunity to explain his opposition to Brown v. Board, even though the night of the 21st he refused to do so. Only after intense political backlash, did Senator Buttars offer the explanation that portions of the judgment were wrong.

Now, he and Gayle Ruzicka of the Eagle Forum are running around the State telling a version of the August 21, 2008 interview that just isn’t true. When Gayle was on KVNU’s For the People Tuesday night, she tried to tell us the same story that Buttars told FOX 13. She may not have known that it was on this show that the comment was made, and when we corrected her that Senator Buttars refused to offer an explanation, she backed down from that talking point immediately.

Listen to the audio at KVNU's For the People and decide for yourself.

Here’s the full interview with FOX 13

-Tom Grover

1 comment:

Bradley Ross said...

I haven't heard the interviews yet but I wanted to make a related point.

It is possible to have questions about the legal basis of the Brown decision while still supporting the outcome.