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Minnesota GOP chair said she faced racism from within party

Minnesota GOP chair Jennifer Carnahan, who was born in South Korea and adopted, said she has been the target of racist and sexist attacks.
by Associated Press and Charles Lam /

MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota Republican Party Chairwoman Jennifer Carnahan said she has been the target of racist and sexist attacks from both Democrats and fellow Republicans.

Carnahan posted on her personal Facebook page on Friday that some GOP leaders around the state have called her "a stupid Asian not even born in America" and used racial slurs, the Star Tribune reported. The newspaper also posted a screenshot of her post. In an interview Sunday with Minnesota-based TV station WCCO, Carnahan added that "racism is not a partisan issue. Negative comments have come at me from both the left and the right."

Jennifer Carnahan, chairwoman of the Minnesota Republican Party.
Jennifer Carnahan, chairwoman of the Minnesota Republican Party.Glen Stubbe / Star Tribune via AP

Carnahan was born in South Korea and adopted by Minnesota parents.

She told the Star Tribune that the remarks are "starting to get to me," but declined to identify who attacked her. She said was merely venting on her personal page and thanking her father for his support after she reached out to him for advice.

Carnahan said on Facebook that she receives hate-filled email and social media messages on a daily basis. She wrote that she was confronted at President Donald Trump's rally in Duluth this past week, where she said she was told she is "disgusting." She said she has received emails telling her she is "not worth a penny" and should "crawl back into a hole and stay there," and that she deserves to make less money than her male predecessors.

Democrats blame Trump for unleashing a new era of racial division. Carnahan, whose term ends next year, rejects that idea.

"I told (Trump) I want to run again to be chair because I want to deliver the state to you in 2020," Carnahan told the newspaper. "If I thought he was a racist or that anything he did was stoking racial divisions, I wouldn't want to work on his behalf because I've had to deal with racism my entire life."

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