Ryan Frazier, an African-American city councilman in Aurora, Colorado’s third-largest city, is running for Congress against Rep. Earl Perlmutter (D., Co.). Denver pollster Floyd Ciruli calls Frazier “the first serious Republican challenger Perlmutter has faced since winning his first hard-fought election in 2006.” Frazier, 32, tells National Review Online that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s “Negro dialect” remark was offensive and strange.
“When someone like Reid can insinuate that one group of Americans has a substandard dialect in comparison to the rest of the country, that’s alarming and, frankly, disturbing,” says Frazier. “This isn’t a Republican or Democrat issue, it’s an American issue, and much broader than being about President Obama. When I first heard the statements, I wondered: What exactly is a ‘Negro’ dialect? Anyone looking at this ought to ask that question. Obviously I’m black, but I’m still not sure what Reid’s talking about. And if the Democratic party is okay with this type of statement from their leadership, well, that speaks volumes.”
Frazier predicts that Reid’s comment won’t play well in his district. “Colorado is a very independent state — it’s not red, it’s not blue, it’s very Colorado — with a kind of live and let live mentality,” he says. Still, with Reid’s and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s bumbling leadership in Washington, Frazier says that he “has a real opportunity to help move Colorado back into the conservative column of fiscal responsibility, pro-growth economic policies, and a strong national defense.”