Over where?

OVER WHERE?…. We talked yesterday about South Carolina state Sen. Jake Knotts (R), who used racial slurs to go after gubernatorial hopeful Nikki Haley (R), telling a local radio show, “We already got one raghead in the White House, we don’t need a raghead in the governor’s mansion.”

Though he offered a half-hearted apology, Knotts proceeded to dig deeper. Yesterday, he called her a “f**king raghead,” and then apologized again — for the first word in the phrase, not the second.

But to truly appreciate the depths of the stupidity here, consider Knotts’ explanation of his worldview. (via Alex Seitz-Wald)

Knotts says he believed Haley has been set up by a network of Sikhs and was programmed to run for governor of South Carolina by outside influences in foreign countries. He claims she is hiding her religion and he wants the voters to know about it. […]

“We need a good Christian to be our governor,” he said. “She’s hiding her religion. She ought to be proud of it. I’m proud of my god.”

Knotts says he believes Haley’s father has been sending letters to India saying that Haley is the first Sikh running for high office in America. He says her father walks around Lexington wearing a turban.

“We’re at war over there,” Knotts said.

Asked to clarify, he said he did not mean the United States was at war with India, but was at war with “foreign countries.”

Every word seems more ignorant than the last. South Carolina’s image has taken quite a few hits of late; it didn’t need Jake Knotts flaunting his humiliating ignorance quite so shamelessly.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.