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MSNBC's Chris Matthews Accuses GOP Of Keeping Jim Crow Alive In 21st Century

03/13/2015 11:16 am ET | Updated Mar 13, 2015

The thought of Chris Matthews railing against Republicans isn't anything new. But during the final segment of "Hardball" Thursday night, the MSNBC host seemed particularly riled up, accusing the GOP of ushering in a new era of Jim Crow with their treatment of the country's first black president.

Matthews said he believes Americans will see Barack Obama's time in the White House in "sharper contrast” in years to come, taking into account the antics he's had to endure from his conservative foes since taking office. According to Matthews, the GOP's primary goal has been to make sure the president "accomplishes nothing" and "gets booted from office as quickly as possible.”

The host pointed to numerous examples of Republican temper tantrums, listing Sen. Tom Cotton's (R-Ark.) recent letter to Iran, subverting Obama's ongoing nuclear negotiations, and Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) shouting “You lie,” during the president's 2009 health care speech, among the most egregious.

“They will read all this and wonder, 'What was it that made this Republican opposition so all out contemptuous of an American president?'” Matthews said. “'What made it treat him as below respect, below the dignity historically accorded his office?'”

The answer, Matthews suggested (and it's been suggested before), stems from President Obama's race.

"They will then look at a picture of this president, a picture of this man," Matthews said, "and perhaps get the idea that the age of Jim Crow managed to find a new habitat in the early 21st century Republican Party.”

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