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Kansas pol seeks one 'great white hope.' Experience necessary.

By Matthew Shaer / August 27, 2009

In this Saturday, Sept. 20, 2008 file photo, Lynn Jenkins talks with voters in Valley Falls, Kan. US Rep. Jenkins told a Aug. 19, 2009 forum in northeast Kansas that the Republican Party is looking for a "great white hope" to help stop the political agenda of the Democratic party and President Barack Obama.

Orlin Wagner/AP


Update: Jenkins says she didn't understand the origin of the phrase 'great white hope.'

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Again with the collapse of the internal filtering mechanism.

This summer, it was Glenn Beck, telling the world that the President of the United States is a committed racist. (Although Beck has stood by the statement, so maybe we shouldn't cast aspersions on the quality of his internal filtering mechanisms.) Then there was the time that Virginia Senator George Allen called a man on Indian descent in the crowd a macaca – which, as the Washington Post points out, "could mean either a monkey that inhabits the Eastern Hemisphere or a town in South Africa."

And because we're in a bipartisan spirit, there was Vice President Joe Biden, describing his then-opponent Barack Obama in 2007. "I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy," Biden said. "I mean, that's a storybook, man." Storybook, indeed.

The latest blunder comes courtesy of US Rep. Lynn Jenkins, who represents Kansas's 2nd District. According to a bio posted on her site, Jenkins, a Republican, grew up on a farm, where she "learned the values of hard work, keeping your word, and the importance of serving your community." But Jenkins, like many of her fellow GOP members, is incensed about the new healthcare reform bill supported by the White House.

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