In this Wednesday, June 2, 2010 Seminole County Sheriff Office booking photo, former state Republican Party chairman Jim Greer is seen after he was arrested at his home near Orlando, Fla. The charges were not released, and there was no immediate word on whether they were linked to a probe of his finances. (AP Photo/Seminole County Sheriff Office) (AP)

GOPer apologizes for "socialist indoctrination" charge

Fmr. FL GOP chair, now indicted, calls out racism in his party and changes heart on socialist indoctrination claim

Justin Elliott
September 14, 2010 5:06PM (UTC)

The former chair of the Florida GOP who last year accused President Obama of indoctrinating students to his "socialist ideology" by delivering a first-day-of-school speech has now apologized for that statement -- and is even calling out "many within the GOP" for their "racist views."

Republican Jim Greer issued a statement on his change of heart today, on the occasion of the president giving another back-to-school speech. Here it is, via the Palm Beach Post:


In the year since I issued a prepared statement regarding President Obama speaking to the nation’s school children, I have learned a great deal about the party I so deeply loved and served. Unfortunately, I found that many within the GOP have racist views and I apologize to the President for my opposition to his speech last year and my efforts to placate the extremists who dominate our Party today. My children and I look forward to the President’s speech.

What Greer doesn't mention? He was arrested and charged with fraud, theft, and money laundering in June for allegedly creating a front company to take a personal cut of the state party's fundraising revenues. Since then, Greer has been causing a headache for the state GOP, and especially his former patron, Senate candidate and current Gov. Charlie Crist.

Greer's trial is set for next year.

Justin Elliott

Justin Elliott is a reporter for ProPublica. You can follow him on Twitter @ElliottJustin

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