MSNBC Commentator Pat Buchanan on Wednesday said that he meant no offense when he told a clearly stunned Rev. Al Sharpton that President Barack Obama was “your boy.”
“Let me clarify something that happened last night on the Al Sharpton show,” Buchanan began his remarks after being introduced on “Morning Joe.”
“A very spirited discussion, I was asked who was the big losers in these battles and the big winners, and I said one of the big losers, using boxing terminology, was ‘your boy,’ and I meant the president of the United States,” Buchanan said.
“Rev. Sharpton said my boy is the president of the United States and he’s doing a rope-a-dope in the Ali fashion and he’s going to finish off your crowd. Now this was taken, some folks took what I said as some kind of slur. None was meant, none was intended, none was delivered, for the record,” Buchanan added.
Sharpton was taken aback by Buchanan’s use of the phrase and the comment led to outrage on liberal blogs to call for his suspension or ouster from MSNBC.
On Tuesday night, during a discussion in which Buchanan and Sharpton debated whether Congress and Obama would extend the Bush tax cuts, Buchanan said: “And let me tell you, your boy, Barack Obama, caved in on it in 2010 and he’ll cave in on it again.”
Sharpton, appearing stunned, interjected: “My what? My president Barack Obama? What did you say?”
Buchanan replied: “He’s your boy in the ring, he’s your fighter.”
Sharpton then said: “He’s nobody’s boy. He’s your president and he’s our president. And that’s what you all have got to get through your head.”
The two commentators then appeared to laugh, with Sharpton predicting Obama would win the “rope-a-dope” strategy by outlasting conservatives while Buchanan saying Obama was “whipped” by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
During his MSNBC show on Wednesday night, Sharpton didn’t address Buchanan’s comment, even after a guest, radio talk show host Joe Madison, accused Republicans of making “racially insenstive” remarks about Obama and cited as an example calling him “boy.”