Peanuts thrown at black camerawoman at GOP meeting

NEW YORK (AP) — A black camerawoman who works for CNN said Thursday that she was not surprised to have two people at the Republican National Convention throw peanuts at her and say “this is what we feed animals.”

The two white people were immediately removed from the Tampa, Fla., convention arena by security officials on Tuesday, and their identities weren’t revealed. The camerawoman, Patricia Carroll, wasn’t able to tell definitively where they were from.

“This is Florida, and I’m from the deep South,” Carroll, a 34-year-old Alabama native, told Maynard Institute blogger Richard Prince on Thursday. “You come to places like this, you can count the black people on your hand. They see us doing things they don’t think I should do.”

She said racism is a global issue and the incident could have happened on a street corner or at the Democratic convention, scheduled for next week in Charlotte, N.C.

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s campaign said Thursday that it has apologized to CNN for what happened.

“We find it absolutely deplorable. We condemn it in the highest possible way,” said Russ Schriefer, strategist for the Romney campaign. “That behavior is just reprehensible.”

CNN said Carroll was not interested in addressing the issue any further. She told Prince that she was hoping the story would go away.

“I can’t change these people’s hearts and minds,” she said. “No, it doesn’t feel good. But I know who I am. I’m a proud black woman. A lot of black people are upset. This should be a wake-up call to black people. … People were living in euphoria for a while. People think we’ve gone further than we have.”

Associated Press reporter Donna Cassata contributed to this story from Tampa, Fla.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.

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