Still smarting from their defeat at the polls Republicans gathered in Washington, D.C. this week to pick new leadership. Republicans in the senate had the chance to offer the American people a fresh face as part of their leadership team.
Instead they picked Trent Lott from Mississippi as their second in command. Lott had once been the Republican leader in the senate but was forced to resign that post a few years back after saying America would have been better off had Strom Thurmond won the presidency in 1948.
Thurmond, from South Carolina, ran as a strict segregationist and spent most of his senate years opposing civil rights. Lott told a birthday party gathering for Thurmond that Mississippians were proud of their vote for Thurmond and that "if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn't have had all these problems."
If Republicans like Lott are going to keep modeling their governing skills and political campaigns after figures like Thurmond the country is in for a few more difficult years.
But maybe Lott will surprise us all and make racial reconciliation the centerpiece of his tenure.
It seems to me he has a real choice now to either follow his old instincts of dividing people based on race or he could answer God's call for justice. It's up to him.