Barbour doesn’t recall civil rights era being ‘that bad’

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Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour won't say if he's running for president in 2012, but he's already working to shape the narrative around a potential bid, especially when it comes to issues like race and his background as a former lobbyist.

In an interview with the Weekly Standard's Andrew Ferguson, the GOP governor offers up some provocative comments about growing up in the racially charged deep South in the 1960s. By Barbour's account, things weren't "that bad" in his hometown of Yazoo City, Mississippi, which escaped some of the violence other nearby towns suffered during the civil rights movement.

"I just don't remember it as being that bad," Barbour, who was in high school at the time, tells Ferguson. "I remember Martin Luther King came to town, in '62. He spoke out at the old fairgrounds and it was full of people, black and white."...

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