Disgusting. That is the only way to describe
Al Sharpton Wellington Webb's outburst yesterday. Unable to present an argument without invoking the race card, former Denver Mayor Wellington Webb went off on an embarrassing and angry tirade during yesterday's reapportionment hearing. Between straight up making things up and stepping on Democrats messaging on redistricting, Webb made an outright fool of himself.
Webb was upset over a metro area state House map approved by the bipartisan reapportionment commission, and rather than present an argument for his map, he instead descended into lies and racial attacks.
Claiming the map put an Arapahoe County jail into House District 37, currently represented by Spencer Swalm (R-Centennial), in order to make it a "minority influence" district, Webb told outright lies. Per The Denver Post:
“After closer inspection, I came to find out that it was the inclusion of the Arapahoe County jail, with thousands of black and brown inmates that gave this district its ‘minority influence."
The problem is Webb completely made that up. Nobody on the commission ever suggested HD37 was a "minority influence" district.
In reapportionment the numbers set aside for each district must be according to the number of residents, not voters, meaning jail populations must be included as part of the count. The prison population was included according to GOP commission member Mario Nicolais because "it has to go somewhere," not in any attempt to add minority voters to the district.
Not satisfied with merely lying about the reasoning behind the map supported by Republicans and the Hispanic Unaffiliated Chairman, Mario Carrerra, Webb went on to play the race card outright:
"At best, the proponents of the alternative plan are so out of touch with the minority community that their assertions could be categorized as insensitive. At worst, the proponents unapologetically used the minority community as pawns for political advantage."
Claiming the Hispanic Chairman "used" Hispanic prisoners to boost the GOP's partisan gain is unbelievable and downright racist. As an Unaffiliated voter, Carrerra has no reason to aid the GOP in any way. In fact, in the metro area state Senate map, he voted with the Democrats.
Wellington Webb has a big and impressive name, but his reapportionment meltdown is reminding us all what a small partisan he truly is. Go ahead and play the Sharpton card, Wellington, just don’t be surprised when it draws political fire and ire, for starters from the Chairman of the Committee who himself knows a thing or two about the interests of minority communities.