NEW REPORT: Johnson Misleads Media, Public on Association with Racist Charles Murray

Aug 01, 2010

Report Shows Senate Candidate Worked for More Than a Year and
Paid Thousands to Bring Elitist, Racist Education “Expert” to Oshkosh

MADISON — Despite multimillionaire Ron Johnson’s claims in June that he was “not familiar” with elitist education “expert” Charles Murray’s extremist views on race and education, a new report out this weekend by the Oshkosh Northwestern states that Johnson in fact waged an extraordinary campaign for more than a year to bring Murray to Oshkosh earlier this year.

The report unearthed documents proving that Johnson pushed hard to host Murray, and was at the center of a dispute that played out after “more than a year of pointed, sometimes tense discussions with other members” of the nonprofit Oshkosh Partners in Education Council.  In fact, two board members actually resigned rather than support bringing Murray to Oshkosh.

According to the documents, Johnson paid more than $5,000 to host Murray in Oshkosh to give a speech that led the community to demand an apology for Murray’s elitist, offensive theories.

Johnson claims that he fought for Murray to come to Oshkosh after reading one of Murray’s books, which states that “not all students are smart enough for four-year college” and that “too many students go to college.”

“Ron Johnson paid thousands to host an elitist who has made a career saying that too many of our children go to college and that our future depends on the ‘truly gifted,’” said Mike Tate, Chair of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. “The fact is, Ron Johnson not only embraces the sort of elite extremism that Murray spews, he is willing to pay for it. If that’s how he spends his own money, taxpayers are right to be concerned how he will spend theirs.”

Murray has made a career trying to “resume some of the most poisonous battles of the late 1960s and ’70s,” by making the case that some groups and ethnicities are more superior to others for biological or genetic reasons.

According to the newspaper’s earlier report, Murray told a member of the audience after his speech that, “East Asians have more of the visual-spatial abilities associated with engineering than whites or any other ethnic group.”

In 1994, Bob Herbert, columnist for the New York Times wrote:

“Mr. Murray gets his kicks by thinking up ways to drape the cloak of respectability over the obscene and long-discredited views of the world’s most rabid racists.”

Murray has a long history of glorifying elitism and intolerance. Among his writings:

In April 2005 he asked, “Where are the female Einsteins?” — an article that sought biological and genetic explanations to justify “why men and women differ at the highest levels of accomplishment.”  [National Post, Nov. 22, 2005]

The educational system is living a lie. The lie is that every child can be anything he or she wants to be.” [Wall Street Journal, Aug. 22, 2008]

“Elites throughout the West are living a lie, basing the futures of their societies on the assumption that all groups of people are equal in all respects.” [Commentary Magazine, Sept. 1, 2005]

“Only a small minority of high-school graduates have the intelligence to succeed in college.” [National Affairs Magazine, Oct. 1, 2009]