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E.W. Jackson Campaign
The more we learn about E.W. Jackson, nominated last weekend by Virginia Republicans as their nominee for lieutenant governor, the crazier it gets:
The Republican nominee for lieutenant governor in Virginia has praised the Constitution’s original clause to count blacks as three-fifths of a person as an “anti-slavery amendment.”

In an April 28, 2011 statement while he was a Senate candidate, conservative minister and lawyer E.W. Jackson held up the three-fifths clause as an “anti-slavery amendment.” The context of his statement was to attack President Obama after a pastor at a church service he attended referred to the three-fifths clause as a historical marker of racism.

“Rev. [Charles Wallace] Smith must not have understood the 3/5ths clause was an anti-slavery amendment. Its purpose was to limit the voting power of slave holding states,” Jackson, an African-American, said in his statement.

Presumably, Jackson's rationale is that southern states wanted slaves to count for even more than three-fifths of a person when it came to allocating seats in Congress, so the fact that they didn't get everything they wanted was "anti-slavery." Of course, that misses the fact that the very existence of the three-fifths clause meant that slavery was written into the Constitution. In that sense, unlike the Thirteenth Amendment which banned slavery altogether, the three-fifths clause was pretty much the opposite of an anti-slavery amendment. Maybe slave states didn't get everything they wanted, but that certainly doesn't make it something to be proud of. And it's really bizarre that Jackson doesn't understand that fact.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by RaceGender DiscrimiNATION and Virginia Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  This guy belongs in a padded cell (16+ / 0-)

    And the GOP is going to continue to produce these abject freaks.

    Just get used to it.


  •  Well, that's certainly one way of looking at it. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    niemann, xxdr zombiexx, Magenta, JBL55, MaikeH

    A weird, delusional way of looking at it.  But it's certainly a way.


  •  There's a term for him. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Judas Goat.

    This guy is taking huge enthusiasm in the role.

  •  Commendations (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    xxdr zombiexx, OnlyWords, Caneel, JBL55

    I have never heard a person spin a turd so well....

    if Virginia votes for these guys again...

  •  Not to mention (7+ / 0-)

    he doesn't know the difference between a clause and an amendment.

  •  Yes, because all those slave-holding states ... (5+ / 0-)

    ... really, REALLY wanted to afford slaves the dignity of full-personhood ... and this didn't allow them to!  

    We sure showed those evil slave-holding states!

  •  When did Sarah Palin... (9+ / 0-)

    Become a middle-aged black man?

    'Where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost' - Ronald Reagan, Communist

    by RichM on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:06:42 AM PDT

  •  Obviously, that slaves were counted at all was (5+ / 0-)


    This is not a bloodless process. — Barack Obama, at the launch of the Hamilton Project....

    by Alexandre on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:07:02 AM PDT

    •  Pro-slavery (4+ / 0-)

      1) There is a reason the 3/5 clause is referred to as a compromise.
      2) There is a reason that the 3/5 clause refers to "three-fifths of all other persons," and not to "slaves."
      3) There is a reason that the term slavery never once occurs in the Constitution and is instead replaced by deliberately vague alternative terms.
      4) There is a reason that, along with that clause, an end to slave importation was written into the same document.

      To call the Constitution pro-slavery shows a fundamental misunderstanding of both its principles and its politics. Bending to political reality while awaiting a riper time is not tantamount to support of what you actually oppose.

  •  Disgusting rhetoric - (7+ / 0-)

    I had to delete my comment 3 times to avoid say something that wouldn't be HR'd.  Tokenism pays, and it pays well.   Believe it.  

  •  Telling any man or woman they are less (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, Mr MadAsHell

    (3/5 or any fraction) than any other human is preposterous!

  •  Wow. (8+ / 0-)

    Now, that's cognitive dissonance.

    The thing about quotes on the internet is you cannot confirm their validity. ~Abraham Lincoln

    by raboof on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:07:43 AM PDT

  •  I guess he also has an explanation for Jim Crow (0+ / 0-)

    and for the racist signs displayed by the Teabaggers at their rallies, and does he defend the KKK too?  

    He seems like an apologist for the racists.  

    Follow PA Keystone Liberals on Twitter: @KeystoneLibs

    by wishingwell on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:07:59 AM PDT

  •  The three fifths clause is a blight on our history (0+ / 0-)

    If African-Americans had been counted as full persons for allocating congressional representation, the slave-holding states would have had much less power.

  •  He Ain't My People (5+ / 0-)

    He yo' people.


  •  Anybody Wanna Bet On This Loon Winning (0+ / 0-)

    the majority of the White vote in VA?

    You know, just like the GOP does from coast-to-coast and from border-to-border....

    Cause who else else would vote for a RepubliKlan - no matter the guise they try to hide behind..

    I'll give 2-to-1 that he will so win the majority of the White vote in VA.

    You know, just like the GOP does from coast-to-coast and from border-to-border....

    I am not now, nor have I ever been, a member of the Republican Party.

    by OnlyWords on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:09:52 AM PDT

  •  The 3/5ths clause was pro-Republican (0+ / 0-)

    in that it described the average brain size for them, as compared to the rest of the world.

    By the authority vested in me by Kaiser Wilhelm II, I pronounce you man and wife. Proceed with the execution.

    by HarryParatestis on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:12:03 AM PDT

  •  Waiting For Him To Spin Out Of Control Over Rape (6+ / 0-)

    You know that's going to happen.

    There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

    by bernardpliers on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:12:22 AM PDT

  •  What? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I mean, you think these people can't get stupider and then this?

    by Magenta on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:15:40 AM PDT

  •  sounds like we have (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    a poor mans clarence thomas on our hands.

  •  Virginia has separate ballot for Lt Governor (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oortdust, wishingwell

    so it will be interesting to see if the voters elect a Republican governor but this guy is just too extreme for all but the most extreme Republicans and they elect a Democrat for Lt Governor.

    If they were on the same ballot I'd say this guy helped McAuliffe's chances.

  •  Anti Slavery By Giving Whites Extra Congressmen (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Samer, MaikeH, bryduck

    based on owning slaves who couldn't themselves vote.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:23:29 AM PDT

  •  Please keep in mind (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    that the man running for governor in Virginia nominated Jackson. No matter how crazy Jackson may be, the man running for governor thinks he is the perfect running mate.

    McDonnell won because Dems were too unimpressed with Deeds to bother voting. I really hope my state does better this time.

  •  He realizes the slaves didn't get to vote, right? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    88kathy, MaikeH

    It's not like they got to go vote, and then their choice was counted as 3/5th of a vote.

  •  3/5 isn't that much more than 1/2 (0+ / 0-)

    1/2 cup is 8 tablespoons
    3/5 cup is 9.6 tablespoons
    1 cup is 16 tablespoons

    That man's crazy cup is overflowing.

    Get the 'oopsie' out of 'keep and bear arms' see GunFAIL and Gun Crazy diaries weekly.

    by 88kathy on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:32:38 AM PDT

  •  the scariest thing about this guy is that he's NOT (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    J V Calin, ChadmanFL

    stupid. If he were, we could just laugh at him. But to be a Republican, you have to play the stupid game and appeal to the dumbest of the dumb. Jackson has a Harvard law degree, practiced law, and taught at Northeastern.

  •  Note to GOP - this isn't helping (4+ / 0-)

    The GOP is just having a heck of a time figuring out this diversity business, aren’t they? They manage to find black candidates that make black people less likely to vote for them.

    By analogy, here is a personal anecdote: Remember way back to 2008 when Obama won the Dem primary over Clinton and Sarah Palin was McCain’s answer to the ‘woman vote’? That’s what led my mother, who hadn’t voted for a Democrat since 1976, to vote for Barack Obama. My mother took Palin as a personal insult. Put an egregiously unqualified vapid bimbo on the ticket just for demographic appeal and women who have actually accomplished something in their lives take that as an affront. Likewise, it’s a pretty good indicator that the guy on the top of the ticket is a misogynistic jackass.

    Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read. - Groucho Marx

    by Joe Bob on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:36:53 AM PDT

  •  In fact, one could argue the slave states actually (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    got to include their chattel when allocating representation in congress. It sounds like a pretty good deal for the slave states. For every 5 slaves they added to their ranks, they got to include three more folks added to their population.

  •  3/5 Compromise frequently mis-understood (7+ / 0-)

    Slavery proponents wanted slaves to be fully counted in setting the number of members a state had in the House and in the Electoral College used in electing presidents.  Slavery opponents did not want slaves to be counted at all.

    The issue was political power, not a statement on what the worth of a slave was relative to a free person.  Keep in mind slavery proponents wanted slaves to be counted as 100% of a free person while slavery proponents wanted 0%.

    If slaves were counted the same as free persons, the slave states would have had far greater power than they already had with the 3/5th compromise.

    From Wikipedia

    The three-fifths ratio, or "Federal ratio", had a major effect on pre-Civil War political affairs due to the disproportionate representation of slaveholding states relative to voters. For example, in 1793 slave states would have been apportioned 33 seats in the House of Representatives had the seats been assigned based on the free population; instead they were apportioned 47. In 1812, slaveholding states had 76 instead of the 59 they would have had; in 1833, 98 instead of 73. As a result, southerners dominated the Presidency, the Speakership of the House, and the Supreme Court in the period prior to the Civil War.[8]

    Historian Garry Wills has postulated that without the additional slave state votes, Jefferson would have lost the presidential election of 1800. Also, "...slavery would have been excluded from Missouri...Jackson's Indian removal policy would have failed...the Wilmot Proviso would have banned slavery in territories won from Mexico....the Kansas-Nebraska bill would have failed...."[8] However, other historians have criticized Wills' analysis as simplistic.[9] For example, while the Three-Fifths Compromise could be seen to favor Southern states (which generally had larger slave populations), the Connecticut compromise tended to favor the Northern states (which were generally smaller). Support for the new Constitution rested on the balance of these sectional interests.[10]

    The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

    by nextstep on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:39:16 AM PDT

    •  The 3/5ths debate (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      demjim, ChadmanFL

      was not only about political power.  It was also about a philosophical question about personhood.  The anti-slavery members of the constitutional convention challenged the Southern position based on the fundamental notion of slavery:  as property, slaves were denied personhood.  The South, insisting on greater legislative and electoral representation in order to prevent the majority from outlawing slavery, was forced into making the nonsensical argument of counting slaves for purposes of representational proportion, but not counting them in any other way.  

      The 3/5ths compromise was the only way to achieve approval of the constitution, both in the convention and in ratification by the states.  Sort of like Pat Leahy withdrawing his amendment that same sex spouses be recognized in the immigration bill in the Senate committee.  That amendment would have doomed the bill in committee, and perhaps beyond, so it was withdrawn.  Once again, southern conservatives play politics with the status of rights.

      •  The philosophical question counted for little (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        as the raw political power dominated the decision combined with the desire to have a common government across slave and non-slave states.

        Also keep in mind that in the late 1700s, slavery and serfdom was normal in the countries that most people lived in.  Slavery was far from a uniquely American experience at that time.

        With the exception of Massachusetts,  the "free states" at the time of creating the Constitution actually had slaves, as they ended slavery by not allowing the children of slaves to become slaves and blocking the importation of slaves but did not free existing slaves.  For example, New York did not end all slavery until 1828.

        Plato's Republic and Milton's Utopia visions of ideal societies even had slaves.

        I recommend reading Wikipedia's Abolition of slavery timeline

        The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

        by nextstep on Wed May 22, 2013 at 11:52:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Race-based slavery was uniquely American (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Also keep in mind that in the late 1700s, slavery and serfdom was normal in the countries that most people lived in.  Slavery was far from a uniquely American experience at that time.
          Elsewhere, serfs were people without land, and slaves were usually prisoners of war. Unlike in this country, it was impossible to distinguish masters and servants simply by the color of their skin.

          261.A wealthy man can afford anything except a conscience. -Ferengi Rules of Acquisition

          by MaikeH on Wed May 22, 2013 at 01:02:27 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  The History of Slavery does not support your claim (0+ / 0-)


            Consider Arab slave trade in Africans and Europeans.
            Consider Japan enslaving Koreans.
            Consider Brazil and African slaves.

            The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

            by nextstep on Wed May 22, 2013 at 01:23:30 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  "Race-based" = uniquely American??? (0+ / 0-)

            I think you have a major typo in your subject line, or I'm horridly misreading it.

            Race-based slavery was a uniquely WESTERN phenomenon - if you want to say that, that would be a defensible claim.

            Race-based slavery as a uniquely "American" phenomenon has to be a typo, b/c it is otherwise outlandishly wrong.

            Considering that the first African slaves were sold into North America in 1619, and the Virginia colony's House of Burgesses was already legislating racial restrictions on African slaves in the 1670s, and mandating the restriction of rights by color one hundred years before the Declaration, it must be a typo.

            They were British, at the time, if nothing else. Even that though also assumes that the slaves the Dutch ship in 1619 was carrying was specifically intending to come to the British North American colonies - which it was not. It had been bound for the Caribbean, where an even more massive slave-plantation society flourished.

            So how this can be a uniquely "American" affliction is entirely intriguing, considering that there would be no "America" for another 100 years.

            "You know, the only trouble with capitalism is capitalists; they're too damn greedy." - Herbert Hoover (Republican)

            by abdguyBOS on Wed May 22, 2013 at 02:21:08 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I should rephrase (0+ / 0-)

              While Europeans were of course heavily involved in the slave trade, the slaves were sold in the so-called "New World," not in Europe.

              European people not involved in seafaring, slave trade, or colonialism could spend an entire lifetime without ever seeing people looking different from themselves.

              261.A wealthy man can afford anything except a conscience. -Ferengi Rules of Acquisition

              by MaikeH on Fri May 24, 2013 at 12:11:36 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  I meant "the Americas" (0+ / 0-)

              not the USA.

              261.A wealthy man can afford anything except a conscience. -Ferengi Rules of Acquisition

              by MaikeH on Fri May 24, 2013 at 12:28:59 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  (and apologies) (0+ / 0-)

                Got it. I did genuinely believe it was a typo, even if the tone didn't convey it. Sorry if it came across as asshole-ish. Too many terrible undergraduate papers.

                "You know, the only trouble with capitalism is capitalists; they're too damn greedy." - Herbert Hoover (Republican)

                by abdguyBOS on Fri May 24, 2013 at 02:48:56 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  your bolded section restated (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ChadmanFL, nextstep
      Keep in mind slavery proponents wanted slaves to be counted as 100% of a free person while slavery opponents wanted 0%.

      Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
      Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights for support in dealing with grief.

      by TrueBlueMajority on Wed May 22, 2013 at 11:05:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Must be a max of 3/5 of a brain to be a (0+ / 0-)

    black conservative Republican.

    I actually heard this guy on the radio in 1988 or 1989 in Boston in an interview, defending keeping a South Boston housing project segregated. The members of his church in Boston (Dorchester) let him have it for that! A good friend of our family used to go to that church. That is the real reason he left Boston for Virginia, not his quote that he moved to VA because "I wanted to live in a more conservative state that better reflected my families values", the members of his church were going to remove him as pastor.

    If anyone in a VA blog wants to contact someone who was a member of his church then, I can get them in contact with someone.

    -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)!

    by dopper0189 on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:39:17 AM PDT

  •  Jackson & Cucinelli don't even have 3/5 of a brain (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Samer, ChadmanFL

    BETWEEN them!

    A village can not reorganize village life to suit the village idiot.

    by METAL TREK on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:39:22 AM PDT

  •  What the hell is wrong with him? (0+ / 0-)

    What the hell is wrong with all the T-publicans that they don't even understand the Constitution they insist they are defending?  What the hell happened to them in their civics classes; did they sleep through them?  And what the hell are they teaching their children while they mortify all of us with their bended interpretation of life, the universe and everything?

    I would rather spend my life searching for truth than live a single day within the comfort of a lie. ~ John Victor Ramses

    by KayCeSF on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:41:36 AM PDT

  •  The tragic part is this.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It's not that there is a wacko saying stuff like this, the shame is that there are Americans ready and willing to vote for him. Reps are only as dumb as the majority of constituents who vote for them.

    Just another day in Oceania.

    by drshatterhand on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:45:55 AM PDT

  •  He doesn't see the problem (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    because he aspires to be 3/5th of a man, right now he's hovering around 1/10th.

  •  I'm sorry, but Jackson is correct about this. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Grizzard, demjim, Mikey, bryduck, davidinmaine

    The slave holding states wanted to count all slaves for the purposes of representation. Those states with no slaves didn't want them counted at all. The compromise that prevented the slave power from destroying the country at its outset was the three-fifths clause. This briefly became a great concern when, after the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment but prior to the Fifteenth, the freedmen of the South could only be counted as full people for the purposes of representation, but had no right to vote. The Republican solution to this was the fifteenth amendment, which during the brief period of its enforcement, ensured the Republican reconstruction of the South. After the Republicans abandoned the South with the compromise of 1877 and the South was able to keep almost twice the representation of its actual voting population and maintain twice the clout in the electoral college that it actually deserved, resulting in Southern blacks emancipated condition actually politically helping to create conditions that if not actually reenslaving them, reduced them to a condition of serfdom. Any federal attempt to change this until the Civil Rights bills of the 1960s was stymied by the South's outsize power resulting from the apportionment that treated blacks as full people, even while their laws did not. Until 1965 American blacks in the South, at least, would have been better off having been counted as 3/5 of a person for purposes of apportionment.

    The three-fifths clause is what is offensive. I understand that it makes a great rhetorical target for those denouncing slavery, but far more offensive is the fact that slavery was permitted in the first place. Unfortunately the constitution does not rhetorical targets for those, instead resorting to euphemisms. Had slaves, like freedmen and women for that matter, been counted as full people, the slave power would have been greater and those attempting to overthrow it would have been correspondingly weaker and it would thus have taken longer. The three-fifths clause was essentially anti-slavery in effect. Even more offensive, a nonperson clause would have ensured the demise of slavery even sooner.

    Ceterum censeo Factionem Republicanam esse delendam.

    by journeyman on Wed May 22, 2013 at 10:54:56 AM PDT

    •  How could it (0+ / 0-)

      be anti-slavery in effect when it strengthened the South's position? The default position was not to have slaves count at all, since they were property. The proponents of slavery got the better part of the compromise. They won.

      •  Perhaps you missed this: (0+ / 0-)

        Even more offensive, a nonperson clause would have ensured the demise of slavery even sooner.

        Ceterum censeo Factionem Republicanam esse delendam.

        by journeyman on Fri May 24, 2013 at 05:36:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  A nonperson (0+ / 0-)

          clause wouldn't have been more offensive, under the circumstances.

          •  I believe that's Jackson's point. (0+ / 0-)

            Don't get me wrong, I think he's as crazy as they come. It just so happens that in this case, he is correct. If blacks had been counted as full persons, it would have been worse, politically speaking. If they had been counted as nonpersons, it would have been better, again, politically speaking. Three-fifths of a person was politically preferable to full persons, as philosophically and rhetorically disgusting as that may be. I believe that was Jackson's essential point, and insofar as that goes, I contend his analysis is fundamentally sound. That allowed, I'm sure that you and I are agreed that this bickering over fractions would be superfluous if it were not for the atrocity of legal slavery, which will forever be a stain on American history.

            Ceterum censeo Factionem Republicanam esse delendam.

            by journeyman on Fri May 24, 2013 at 07:28:35 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Well come election time (0+ / 0-)

    My guess is this guy gets about 3/5ths the vote share of the other GOP'ers running statewide.  How fitting.

  •  The main reason they gave slaves 3/5 was to (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    demjim, Plantsmantx

    justify more seats in congress for southerners.

  •  This guy wouldn't have a problem being 3/5 today (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    demjim, ChadmanFL

    He'd just say yeah boss.

  •  I am embarrassed... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ChadmanFL, spacecadet1 live in Virginia.  I can't believe that the slate of candidates that we must choose from is as pathetic as it is.  We are in some sort of race to the bottom apparently.

  •  E.W. EWUEEE (0+ / 0-)

    E.W. Jackson is Herman Cain REDOUX  times 10.

  •  That's an old trick, but it's not fooling... (0+ / 0-)

    anyone.  The south didn't want slaves to count at all.

    "Really nice, but also very serious about his job." Jackie Evancho on President Obama 6/7/12

    by BarackStarObama on Wed May 22, 2013 at 01:19:27 PM PDT

    •  Nope. Other way around. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Look above; many others have it correctly analyzed. The slave states wanted the slaves to be counted--for census purposes and therefore for the House--as people. The non-slave states wanted them not to be counted as people at all. 3/5ths was the compromise position they could all successfully vote into the clause.

      "Lone catch of the moon, the roots of the sigh of an idea there will be the outcome may be why?"--from a spam diary entitled "The Vast World."

      by bryduck on Wed May 22, 2013 at 01:31:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I don't know (0+ / 0-)

    where this thing originated, but Glenn Beck was the first person I heard "articulate" it.

  •  he may have it "correct", but the President's (0+ / 0-)

    pastor also has it correct. it was racist. Whether it was 0/5ths of a person or 3/5s of a person, it's still a racist blight that is finally gone.

    this pseudo-revisionism is all part of the great fetish the right has with turning the founders into demigods. it's kind of creepy.

  •  NO NO NO (0+ / 0-)

    All I can do is shake my head back and forth and scream.  NO! He can't really think that.  NO!

    A bad idea isn't responsible for those who believe it. ---Stephen Cannell

    by YellerDog on Wed May 22, 2013 at 02:25:58 PM PDT

  •  The 3/5 compromise (0+ / 0-)

    made a mockery of Republican values that the founding fathers supposed fought for. The northern states chose Union over principle and appeased the south.

    Calling the 3/5 compromise anti-slavery is like calling Munich "tough on Hitler" because the allies didn't give him absolutely everything he wanted.

  •  3/5 person was wrong, regardless of the intent. (0+ / 0-)

    Even if Jackson was correct, it only proves that the Northern states had a paternalistic and condescending attitude towards African Americans, and did not see them as fully equal, either, even if they were "anti-slavery".

    Why can conservatives never admit that America was wrong sometimes in history? Maybe it goes against their theology that America was ordained by God and is a special nation. Errancy would ruin the myth.

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