Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Candidate for RNC chairman is former member of "whites only" club

South Carolina GOP Chairman Katon Dawson recently resigned from a club with a "whites only" membership policy after a newspaper learned of his membership in the club.

According to The State,

Dawson said he began working to change the club’s admissions practices in mid-August after reading about the deed in an article in The State.

“I understand the deed is unconstitutional,” Dawson said. And, on a personal level, “that deed is unacceptable.”

In 1948, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned similar land restrictions as a violation of the equal protection clause. But no one has challenged the deed restriction in court.

Dawson wrote a letter to club leaders Aug. 20, urging them to allow people of color.

“It is with only the best interests of our club’s proud tradition at heart that I inform you of my intent to work to change the club practice that would exclude membership for anyone based on any specific ethnicity,” he wrote in the letter obtained by The State.

Dawson declined to provide a copy of his resignation letter.


The first letter was written 11 days before the GOP presidential convention, during which Dawson’s interest in leading the national party became public.

Dawson was a member for twelve years and it never occurred to him that there might be a reason he never saw any African Americans at the club?

The Republican National Committee has better choices for Chairman.