Top Republicans Get Backlash for Praising Mandela

Conservatives criticize the South African leader and accuse lawmakers of "revisionist history."

Posted: 12/09/2013 11:15 AM EST

Rep. Eric Cantor (Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

When the news broke that former South African President Mandela had died, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor was quick to issue a statement expressing "deep" sadness about the loss of an "exceptional leader who made the world a better place."

Since then, he and other Republican lawmakers have paid tribute to Mandela on Facebook — and some members of their conservative bases aren't liking it, TPM reports.

One follower called Cantor's description of Mandela "revisionist history," while others expressed pleasure that the revered leader is "finally dead."

In response to a post from Texas Sen. Ted Cruz stating that Mandela "will live in history as an inspiration for defenders of liberty around the globe," one commenter wrote this:

"Why don’t all you Mandela lovers head on over to South Africa and see what’s going on now that “Mandela’s people” have control of the nation…experience what life is really like. Especially if you are white."

More than one poster on Florida Sen. Marco Rubio's page called Mandela a communist.

One woman wrote: "He was a communist terrorist man…  You won't be getting my vote because you are just plain ignorant with no cojones. Lol."

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