Kansas City Congressional candidate Maite Salazar is running for Missouri’s Fifth District U.S. Congress, but did she ruin her own campaign by confusing jazz singer Al Jarreau for convicted sex offender Bill Cosby? Salazar took to Twitter to make and awful attack against her opponent, Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, who is serving his seventh term representing Missouri’s Fifth Congressional District.
What was an attempt to smear Rep. Cleaver’s campaign, quickly blew up in Salazar’s face. “Just FYI, my opponent keeps a picture of #BillCosby underneath his desk. This is not a drill,” she wrote.
She was quickly corrected by Rachel R. Gonzalez, a member of the executive committee for the Missouri Democratic Party. “Maite, Rep. Cleaver does not have a photo of Bill Cosby under his desk.. That’s a photo of the late Al Jarreau taken by KC Jazz Musician Groovy Grant when he visited KC. Not all Black people look the same — get proof before spreading lies. Not a good look for your campaign.”
After pretty much saying that all Black folks look alike, Salazar took to Twitter to apologize. However, the apology was not specifically directed towards Cleaver. It was also subpar.
“I would like to offer my deepest apology. I made a mistake by insinuating my opponent had a picture he did not have in his office. I overstepped, when I should have left it alone. When you’re when you are running a campaign of this magnitude, mistakes are made,” she wrote.
The Congressional candidate added, “This was an insensitive mistake. Again, I offer my apology. I will continue to fight for all the things are needed in the 5th district.”
Her meager apology was not sufficient for folks on Twitter who did what they do best and called her out.
“’Insinuating?’ More like, ‘declaring’. What a garbage apology,” one person tweeted.
Another person wrote, “You’re not progressive if you blatantly lie about your opponent. That’s as regressive as it gets. And that passive voice ‘mistakes are made’ bullsh*t to avoid taking responsibility is also the same old same old political crap. Lady, do better. We don’t need Democrats like that.”
A third user questioned whether or not Salazar is “responsible enough” to hold the position that she is running for. “Do you know what the word ‘insinuate’ means? If yes, then you understand that this tweet is a lie. If no, then you’re casually throwing around a word you don’t understand, and that makes me question whether or not you’re responsible enough to hold public office.”
It’s uncertain what the future holds for Salazar’s career in politics, but one this is for certain, folks aren’t accepting her error, nor are they entertaining her apology.