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Obama Campaign Lacking Diversity? Photo Gets Bloggers Riled

The Huffington Post  |  By Posted: 04/10/2012 5:54 pm Updated: 04/10/2012 6:09 pm

President Barack Obama's reelection campaign is dismissing "internet fodder" surrounding a photo of his 2012 campaign staff which features many young, white faces.

The photo, which was posted on Tumblr and also accompanied a BuzzFeed article about the 2012 campaign, featured only 80 staffers -- most of whom were young and white.

Fox News ran the photo with a headline that read "Stunning Lack Of Diversity At Obama Campaign HQ" and the Daily Beast ran a blog titled "An Obama Campaign Photo That Looks Like a Young Republican Rally."

The Washington Free Beacon, which has not reported on the number of minorities at any recent GOP event to our knowledge, went as far as to count the number of "black individuals" featured on the OFA Tumblr page.

Seriously.

Glenn Beck's The Blaze said the photo was embarrassing for a president who "makes a habit out of accusing his opponents of being racist." (When did that happen?) NewsOne wrote that the room looked "as white as a klan rally," proving once again that the conversation surrounding race and President Obama is often laced with lies and hyperbole.

An Obama campaign spokesperson dismissed the online outrage in a statement to The Huffington Post:

"This is mere internet fodder and the picture is not an accurate representation of the diversity of staff, backgrounds and experiences that make up the Obama for America campaign team. This is a campaign built on the inclusion of all Americans and while the Democratic party casts a wide net, the GOP's extreme partisan agenda is turning away voters in droves.”

In a sarcastic post titled "Scoop: White Kids Work For Obama," Mother Jones' reporter Tim Murphy posted a photo of what a "real Young Republicans rally looks like" and criticized the Daily Beast for turning the photo into some sort of evidence to support the president's "growing race problem." If anything, he says, it's more about economics:

The reality is that any bias in weeding out volunteers is likely more of a means-test: Volunteers for political campaigns are necessarily college-age kids with enough financial backing to allow them to work full- or part-time (and overtime, in some cases) without pay and with little if any opportunity for advancement. That gives well-off white kids a boost, I suppose.

Should President Obama be worried about what some conservative bloggers think of his Tumblr page? Probably not. NewsOne reported that black GOP primary voters have been "nearly nonexistent" this cycle. And his approval ratings remain high among black voters.

Earlier on HuffPost:

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