Monday, September 1, 2008

Dem Leader: Gustav Demonstrates God's on Our Side

It appears that Michael Moore isn't the only one who thinks Gustav is a sign that God is supporting the Democrats.

A blogger for sat behind former national chairman of the Democratic National Committee Don Fowler and Rep. John Spratt of South Carolina on a flight from Denver to Charlotte after the convention. Their conversation centered on making fun of Sarah Palin, with Fowler describing her as Dan Quayle on steroids and Spratt saying she was "just terrible." They both agreed that other than the simple fact that she's a female she has nothing to offer.

But the conversation turned ugly as Fowler is caught on camera saying, "The hurricane is going to hit New Orleans about the time they start. The timing is, at least it appears now, it will be there Monday. That just demonstrates God is on our side." He is seen gleefully laughing that the hurricane is going to hit New Orleans, and saying "everything's cool."

South Carolina Republican Chairman Katon Dawson's reaction was to say, "The outrageous behavior of two of the Obama campaign's highest profile supporters in the south is despicable, a cynical politization of life and death. I call on Barack Obama to immediately denounce Fowler and Spratt and demand sincere apologies from these members of the Democratic leadership."

On Sunday, Fowler told The Associated Press that he was making fun of comments made by the Rev. Jerry Falwell, who after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, said the attacks were God's punishment for abortion, homosexuality and other sins.

"I don't believe in a God that's vengeful," Fowler said. "I believe in a God that's compassionate."

"This is a point of national concern. I think everybody of good will has great empathy and sympathy for people in New Orleans," Fowler also said. "Most religious people are praying for people in New Orleans. There is no political connotation to this whatsoever. This was just poking fun at Jerry Falwell and the nonsensical thing he had said several years ago."

There is no mention on the video of Jerry Falwell or of 9/11. The video shows Fowler was pleased that Gustav was slamming into New Orleans as the Republicans were scheduled to open their convention.

ABC News' Teddy Davis reports this Folwer apology:

"If this offended anybody, I personally apologize. It was a mistake, and it was a satirical statement made in jest. And one that I clearly don't believe."

He also took a swing at the blogger:

"One doesn't anticipate that one's private conversation will be surreptitiously taped by some right-wing nutcase," said Fowler. "But that's the nature of what we're dealing with."

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