Harry Reid: Everyone’s (Second) Favorite Democrat Gaffe Machine

- July 27, 2016

In 2015 Reid Said New Hampshire And Iowa "Shouldn't Be The Ones Choosing Who's Going To Be President" Because "Nobody Lives There" And They Lack Minorities. "'I was always terribly upset about how we were choosing our presidents,' Reid said during a question-and-answer session with The Washington Post. 'You go to New Hampshire, there aren't any minorities there. Nobody lives there. You go to Iowa, and there are a few people there. But, again, it is a place that does not demonstrate what America is all about, for a lot of different reasons.' Reid added that Nevada 'is representative of what America is all about.' 'I don't mean to denigrate New Hampshire or Iowa but they shouldn't be the ones choosing who's going to be president,' he said." (Jordain Carney, "NH Governor Calls On Reid To Apologize For Remarks," The Hill, 10/13/15)

In 2014 Reid Told The Las Vegas Asian Chamber Of Commerce That Asians Aren't "Smarter Than Anybody Else" And Later Said He Had Trouble "Keeping My Wongs Straight." "Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid drew laughter from an Asian audience Thursday with a pair of Asian-themed jokes. 'I don't think you're smarter than anybody else, but you've convinced a lot of us you are,' Reid, a Nevada Democrat, told the guffawing crowd at the Las Vegas Asian Chamber of Commerce. … Later, before walking off stage, Reid quipped: 'One problem that I've had today is keeping my Wongs straight.'" (Zeke Miller, "Harry Reid's Joke To Asians: You're Not Smarter Than Everyone Else," Time, 8/22/14)

In 2014 Reid "Apparently Forgot Justice Clarence Thomas Is Black" In His Comment Decrying The Supreme Court Ruling On The Hobby Lobby Case. "Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is so angry over the Supreme Court's 5-4 decision in the Hobby Lobby contraception case last week that he apparently forgot Justice Clarence Thomas is black. … The Senate will act soon to 'ensure that women's lives are not determined by virtue of five white men,' Reid added. But his reference to 'five white men' was off by 20 percent." (Chuck Ross, "Harry Reid Apparently Thinks Clarence Thomas Is White," The Daily Caller, 7/9/14)

In 2013 It Was Reported That Reid Asked A Staffer If She Had "A Learning Disability" After She Misread The Phone Number For A Radio Interview. "Once, a young communications adviser, Rebecca Kirszner, who had just started working in Reid's Senate office, kept misreading a phone number that Reid had been trying to dial for a radio interview. In his straight-to-the-point manner, Reid asked her, 'Do you have a learning disability?'" (Jon Ralston, "Reid: Not Really A Townee?," Ralston Reports, 7/18/13)

  • "Embarrassed, She Quietly Said Yes." (Jon Ralston, "Reid: Not Really A Townee?," Ralston Reports, 7/18/13)

In 2013 Reid Declared "That Hurricane Katrina Was In Some Ways 'Nothing In Comparison' To Superstorm Sandy." "After being called 'an idiot' by a Senate colleague, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid backtracked Monday after declaring that Hurricane Katrina was in some ways 'nothing in comparison' to superstorm Sandy." (Dan Friedman, "Majority Leader Harry Reid Backtracks After Saying Hurricane Katrina Was 'Nothing In Comparison' To Superstorm Sandy," New York Daily News, 1/7/13)

In 2013 Reid Said Obamacare Was A "Step In The Right Direction" Toward A Single-Payer System "That's Going To Work Forever." "'What we've done with Obamacare is have a step in the right direction, but we're far from having something that's going to work forever,' Reid said. When then asked by panelist Steve Sebelius whether he meant ultimately the country would have to have a health care system that abandoned insurance as the means of accessing it, Reid said: 'Yes, yes. Absolutely, yes.'" (Karoun Demirjian, "Reid Says Obamacare Just A Step Toward Eventual Single-Payer System," Las Vegas Sun, 8/10/13)

In 2012 Reid "Made An Outrageous Allegation That GOP Nominee Mitt Romney Hadn't Paid Taxes For 10 Years." "During the 2012 presidential campaign, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid made an outrageous allegation that GOP nominee Mitt Romney hadn't paid taxes for 10 years." (Ayobami Olugbemiga, "Harry Reid Gives Shameful Response To His Attack On Mitt Romney's Taxes," The Huffington Post , 4/6/15)

  • In 2015 Reid Said He Had No Regrets About Making His Unsourced And False Claim Because "Romney Didn't Win." "Harry Reid, D-Nev. has no regrets about his 2012 claims that then presidential candidate Mitt Romney paid no taxes for 10 years. The outgoing Senate Minority Leader even bragged to CNN that the comments, which had been described as McCarthyism, helped keep Romney from winning the election. 'They can call it whatever they want. Romney didn't win did he?' Reid said during a wide-ranging interview." (Ashe Schow, "Harry Reid Is Proud He Lied About Mitt Romney's Taxes," Washington Examiner, 3/31/15)

In August 2010, Senator Reid Said That He Couldn't Understand How A Hispanic Could Be A Republican. "U.S. Sen. Harry Reid on Tuesday slammed Republicans for blocking comprehensive immigration reform and told Hispanics they shouldn't be treated differently because 'their skin's a tone darker' than that of America's early European immigrants. 'I don't know how anyone of Hispanic heritage could be a Republican, OK,' Reid said, speaking to Latino supporters whose votes he needs to win re-election in November. 'Do I need to say more?'" (Laura Myers, "Reid: How can Hispanics be Republican?," Las Vegas Review Journal, 8/11/10)

In March 2010, Reid Said That It Was Good That "Only 36,000 Lost Their Jobs Today." SEN. HARRY REID: "(From videotape.) Today is a big day in America. Only 36,000 people lost their jobs today, which is really good." (Fox News, "Your World," 3/5/10)

In February 2010, Reid Pushed For Passage Of A Jobs Bill By Saying That More Men Beat Their Wives When They Are Unemployed. SEN. HARRY REID: "I have met with some people while I was home dealing with domestic abuse. It has gotten out of hand. Why? Men don't have jobs. Women don't have jobs either. But women aren't abusive, most of the time. Men, when they're out of work, tend to become abusive. Our domestic crisis shelters in Nevada are jammed. It's the way it is all over the country." (Fox News, "O'Reilly Factor," 2/24/10)

In January 2010, Reid Was Forced To Apologize For Comments Made During The 2008 Campaign About President Obama's Race. "Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid apologized Saturday following reports he had privately described then-candidate Barack Obama during the presidential campaign as a black candidate who could be successful thanks in part to his 'light-skinned' appearance and speaking patterns 'with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one.' Journalists Mark Halperin and John Heilemann reported the remarks in their new book 'Game Change,' according to an excerpt published by The Atlantic late Friday." (Mark Preston, "Reid Apologizes For 'Negro Dialect' Comment," CNN, 1/9/10)

  • Reid Said That President Obama Was Embraced By America Because He Was "Light-Skinned" With "No Negro Dialect, Unless He Wanted To Have One." "'He (Reid) was wowed by Obama's oratorical gifts and believed that the country was ready to embrace a black presidential candidate, especially one such as Obama - a "light-skinned" African American "with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one," as he said privately. Reid was convinced, in fact, that Obama's race would help him more than hurt him in a bid for the Democratic nomination,' they write." (Mark Preston, "Reid Apologizes For 'Negro Dialect' Comment," CNN, 1/9/10)

In December 2009, Reid Compared Republicans Demanding Health Care Reform Be Done Slowly To Those Who Didn't Want To End Slavery. HARRY REID: "All Republicans could come up with is this -- slow down, stop everything, let's start over. If you think you heard these same excuses before, you're right. This country belatedly recognized the wrongs of slavery, there were those who dug in their heels and said, slow down, it's too early, let's wait. Things aren't bad enough." (Fox News, "Special Report," 12/7/09)

Reid Said The Death Of Senator Kennedy Was Going To Help The Democrats Pass Health Care. "You just gotta love Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for an astonishing burst of candor the other day in an interview with the Reno Gazette Journal. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy had just barely been laid to rest when the Nevada Democrat blurted out this about the impact of Kennedy's death on pending health-care legislation: 'I think it's going to help us. He hasn't been around for some time. We're going to have a new chairman of that committee. It'll be, I don't know for sure, but I think Sen. [Chris] Dodd. He has a right to take it. Either him or U.S. Sen. [Tom] Harkin, whichever one wants it can have it.'" (Editorial, "Reid Sinks His Own Case," The Boston Herald, 9/4/09)

  • Reid Falsely Claimed That Senator Kennedy's Cancer Was In Remission. "Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid became the latest Democrat to stray into rhetorical trouble Tuesday, botching statements on three subjects in one news conference including the fragile health of the chamber's most senior members. The Nevada Democrat reported that one of them, Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., was absent because he was receiving a new round of treatment for his brain cancer. Asked if the cancer was in remission, Reid replied, 'As far as I know, it is, yes.' Kennedy's office refused to confirm Reid's comments or make any statement in response, the public silence a classic Washington disavowal." (Laurie Kellman, "Sen. Reid Botches 3 Subjects At News Conference," Associated Press, 5/20/09)
  • In August 2009, Senator Reid Called Opponents Of The Health Care Bill "Evil Mongers." "Nevertheless, the Senate majority leader invoked the e-word himself last week at an energy conference in Las Vegas, where he accused those protesting President Barack Obama's health-care proposals of being 'evil mongers.' So proud was he of this contribution to the American political lexicon that he repeated it to a reporter the next day and noted the phrase was 'an original.'" (Bill McGurn, "Harry Reid's 'Evil' Moment," Wall Street Journal, 8/18/09)

Reid Told An Executive Who Works At The Las Vegas Review Journal, "I Hope You Go Out Of Business." "On Wednesday, before he addressed a Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce luncheon, Reid joined the chamber's board members for a meet-'n'-greet and a photo. One of the last in line was the Review-Journal's director of advertising, Bob Brown, a hard-working Nevadan who toils every day on behalf of advertisers. He has nothing to do with news coverage or the opinion pages of the Review-Journal. Yet, as Bob shook hands with our senior U.S. senator in what should have been nothing but a gracious business setting, Reid said: 'I hope you go out of business.'" (Sherman Frederick, "Enough Is Enough, Harry," Las Vegas Review Journal, 8/30/09)

In December 2008, When The Capitol Visitor Center Opened Reid Said He Was Glad He Wasn't Going To Have To Smell The Tourists Anymore. "Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid defended himself Wednesday over a joking comment that tourists to the Capitol sometimes smell. Turns out many people weren't amused. The Nevada Democrat has been attacked on blogs, editorial pages and letters to the editor since his remark last week: 'In the summertime, because of the high humidity and how hot it gets here, you could literally smell the tourists coming into the Capitol.'" (Erica Werner, "Reid Tries To Explain 'Smell The Tourists Comment," The Associated Press, 12/10/08)

In April 2007, Harry Reid Said The Iraq War Was Lost. HARRY REID: "Now, I believe, myself, that the secretary of state, secretary of defense, and you have to make your own decision as to what the president knows, that this war is lost." (Fox News, "Special Report," 6/30/09)

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