By Barney Blakeney
Charleston Branch NAACP President Dot Scott last week still was seething after reports a local Republican Party official recently posted racist remarks on Facebook calling former President Barack the n-word and projected racial slurs at others. Robert ‘Bobby’ Miller denied making the posts saying his Facebook account had been hacked. Although he voluntarily resigned from his precinct presidency, neither Scott nor other Republicans are buying that explanation.
In a Feb. 16 statement from the branch Scott said, “Mr. Miller was apparently so incensed by President Barack Obama’s recently unveiled Presidential portrait that he took to social media and posted that portrait with the vilest possible racial slurs as his comments. When confronted with his bigoted social media post, Mr. Miller did as all racists do when confronted with concrete evidence of their racism; He apologized to those who found his post offensive and claimed that his social media account was ‘hacked’. The facts say otherwise.”
She added, “The legitimate press uncovered numerous previous racist social media posts by Mr. Miller about President Obama and about Congress members John Lewis and Frederica Wilson, as well as a rude and homophobic post about Senator Lindsey Graham.” Continuing she said, “We also commend Senator Larry Grooms and the Charleston County Legislative Delegation for swiftly removing Mr. Miller from his Charleston Transportation Committee post and for appointing a new member.” Prior to the posts being challenged, Miller held positions as a Charleston County Republican Party precinct president and an appointed member of the Charleston Transportation Committee.
Scott called this reporter last week to suggest that local Black Republicans should take a public position on the alleged remarks. Charleston County Republican Party First Vice Chairman Maurice Washington said as soon as the Facebook posts were made known to county officials, steps were taken to distance it from Miller. He said Miller is unknown to executive committee members, is not a dues-paying member and holds a precinct position that easily is attainable with only a few votes at the precinct level.
“None of us know the guy or have ever seen him at a county meeting. When we heard about the Facebook posts, our chairman immediately took steps to either get him to resign or have him removed. If the reports are true, he’s not the type of person we welcome into a party where inclusion and diversity are embraced,” Washington said. He noted the Charleston County Republican Party Executive Committee perhaps is the most racially diverse in the state. It includes members who are Black, White, Jewish and Arab.
The county’s Republican Chair Larry Kobrovsky echoed those sentiments. “What was posted was ugly and offensive and unacceptable from a representative of our party,” Kobrovsky said. “Though Mr. Miller maintains his innocence, we thought for the good of the party he resigned.”