State senator apologizes for racially charged remark

Senator Jack Hatch this morning sent an email to his colleagues in the Iowa Legislature, apologizing for remarks he made which have been widely discussed in the statehouse and written about in The Des Moines Register.  UPDATE:  "The moment overcame me," Hatch told his senate colleagues shortly after one o'clock as he delivered an apology about his "inappropriate" and "dispicable" comment.Here's the audio of Hatch's apology (mp3 runs 3 minutes). (The sighs you hear on the audio are from the breathing of Senate President Jack Kibbie who left his own microphone open as Hatch was speaking.) 

Hatch, who is white, used the "N" word to describe how he thought he was being treated by legislative leaders.  Hatch made the comment to Rep.Ako Abdul-Samad, who is black.  Hatch expanded on the "n" word, suggesting he and Abdul-Samad were being treated as "slaves" by the "masters" at the statehouse. 

Hatch sent an email to not only his fellow legislators this morning, but to all staff members in the Iowa House and Senate (Hatch made the statement with the loaded "N" word reference in front of a staff member).  Hatch told his colleagues he had made "an inappropriate reference" that was "wrong and inexcusable."  He promised it would not happen again.

Hatch's racially-charged statements were made in reference to a bill which would expand the state program which provides health care coverage to kids who aren't currently covered.  Hatch had shepherded the bill through the senate and Hatch was expressing outrage over changes a House committee was making to the bill.

EVENING UPDATE: For those of you who have not read the Radio Iowa or Des Moines Register articles on this subject which were linked in the first paragraph and who have sent email asking for Hatch's party affiliation. Hatch is a Democrat from Des Moines.

NEXT MORNING UPDATEHatch appeared at a news conference with Iowa's African-American leaders.

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.


  1. IowaWoman says

    I did read that article. Why if a republican said that would it be different again? Only blacks AND dems can say the N-word? I’m just trying to get this P.C. stuff straight.

  2. What party is Hatch affiliated with?

  3. NO Comment from this independant. Ridiculous.

  4. bombpop007 says

    What an embarassment. As a citizen that resides in Iowa I don’t want to be represented like this. I don’t care what party they are with. I do find it interesting that those that were key in creating political awareness can’t live up to their own standards. Just like we should vote them out nationally we need to do so locally. I’m sick of this on all levels.

  5. Linda Wise says

    Why is the mainstream media not discussing this? If he were Republican you would never hear the end of it. I just do not understand the double standards in this country. It really makes me sad to see what is happening to this wonderful country.

  6. Typical Democrat language.

  7. Weren’t the liberals the open minded, progressive party of everyone is the same and all that farce? Hmm, didn’t think so.
    Hipocritical? Hmmm, just a wee lil’ bit. Surprising, no. they can talk the talk, but when they try to walk the walk, they trip over their long tongue and their fat pockets.
    Conservatives are the party of everyone, especially the working class. Black, white, purple, yellow, it doesn’t matter.

  8. I don’t don’t know why he should apologize, I hear a lot of black people call each other that most every day…and I work in a school system!