Audra Shay Responds to Race Allegations

July 3, 2009 by  
Filed under News

Audra Shay, Candidate for Chairman of Young Republicans

Audra Shay, Candidate for Chairman of Young Republicans

Audra Shay, YR Renewal Candidate for Chairman of the National Young Republicans, issued a statement concerning the racial allegations that are popping up all over the internet.

Shay is claiming this is a “desperate” attempt by the Next Level team to topple her candidacy for Chairman.  Her statement is below:


Dear Friends and Supporters,

Yesterday on Facebook, an unfortunate incident occurred. An individual posted two comments on my Facebook wall, the first comment arguing against big government and the second filled with racially charged comments. I responded supporting the individual’s first post, to continue the fight against big government spending. I was not aware of the racial comments until sometime later, when a third individual brought it to my attention. I immediately deleted the derogatory and outright disgusting comments and subsequently posted a statement on my Facebook Status stating that in no way, shape or form are the comments posted by other individuals a reflection of me or my beliefs as an American, a Veteran, a Mother or a Candidate. I do not, nor would I ever, condone that type of language or behavior.

Unfortunately, my opponents have now spun a web of misconception and untruths, desperately trying to paint me as a racist. Nothing could be farther from the truth. In fact, I have made it part of my Young Republican life to ensure that we did not just focus on outreach, but inclusion. Under my leadership as Chairman of the State of Louisiana’s Young Republicans, we were able to raise $90,000 for a minority outreach media campaign. Also under my leadership as Louisiana Chairman we brought the largest minority delegation to the YRNF Convention in 2007.

It is a disgrace that these types of political attacks are taking place and once again, it proves that my opponents will stoop to the lowest levels to steal this election from the jaws of victory. Our Team is one of honor and integrity. We take this service to heart and will not allow others to tarnish our reputations. If you have any questions or concerns about this matter or any other matters, please email, call or Facebook message me. I’m always available.

Many believe she was aware of the comment because of the 8 minute time lapse after the derogotory comment was made by the other individual.

Courtesy the Arkansas Times

Audra Shay Not Found on Social Media
Race Bites Another Republican Leader
Plea to Vet Audra Shay Further

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  • Tim

    Why did she initially de-friend the person who was offended by the remarks and not the racist who made them? This woman IS a racist!

    • Sunday

      I would like a clear answer to this question, too.

    • Richie

      Where was that even said? She de-friended the other person?

      • Andre

        She only removed them AFTER all this broke. She thinks she’s slick but like all GOP Southerns she’s not the smartest. Screen shots were taken & have now been posted all over the inter-web from Huff to DailyBeast and MANY African American & Hispanic sites. WTF is WRONG with the GOP?? Ok so you lose an election then I guess either the REAL GOP comes out full of HATE for anyone not like them. Well keep it up & all you’ll get is old whites & crazies to vote for you. But this will all blow over she made some BS statement. But again SHE DID reply back after a few minutes to the “coon” comment with a laugh then claimed she didn’t read the email but she also said “Go get them!” she a lair & her racism has now come to light she’s tryin to hide like a roach

        • Sistah In GA

          Why did it take 36 hours to release this statement?

          • Kat

            “Why did it take 36 hours to release this statement?”

            Because she may have needed the time to figure out how best to “spin” her tendencies to embrace her inner racist.

            There is no doubt she is a racist. She de-friended the two people who called her out on the posted vile comments, and let the true friend stay on, so he could post more racist comments 12 hours later. Case in point:

            “…the last time i checked i was a good ole southern boy…and if yur @$$ is black dont let the sun set on it in a southern town”

            And for anyone who thinks Audra didn’t know what “coon” meant… if there was any chance at all that were true, she was properly informed by Cassie Wallender, who wrote the following, 1 hour and 46 minutes after Audra’s “You tell em Eric! lol”:

            “Okay, why is this okay? I just looked it up.

            ‘It comes from the term baracoons (a cage), where they used to place Africans, who were waiting to be sent to America to be slaves.’

            THIS IS NOT OKAY. And it’s not funny.”

            You can see what Sean L. Conner’s immediate response was here:


            Now ask yourself these important questions… if Audra Sigler Shay “immediately deleted the derogatory and outright disgusting comments and subsequently posted a statement on my Facebook Status stating that in no way, shape or form are the comments posted by other individuals a reflection of me or my beliefs as an American, a Veteran, a Mother or a Candidate,” then…

            1.) Why did she de-friend Cassandra Wallen and Sean L. Conner BEFORE SHE POSTED HER POSITION on not condoning the use of racial slurs!?

            2.) Why was Eric Pike, the person who posted the racist comments, STILL A FRIEND after Cassandra and Sean were removed from Audra’s Friend list? Mr. Pike was able to post the “if your ass is black” comment 3 hours and 16 minutes after Audra stated “It was not right nor appropriate to talk that way.”


            3.) Why did Audra DELETE ALL OF HER SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS, after an unflattering investigation turned up MORE RACIST and INSENSITIVE COMMENTS written by AUDRA HERSELF?


            Was she unable to “scrub away” all of her ignorant, intolerant, and hate-filled rants?

            Did she decide to just throw in the towel altogether on Social Media, because it shows too closely who she really is?

            Young Republicans have a serious decision to make on July 11.

            Will the Party start being more inclusive… or should we just let the bigots take control?


    • Anthony Phillips

      I saw a screenshot of Piker actually RESPONDING to her apology. Wouldn’t this mean that he was still on her friends list after all that time?

      If so, how much of an idiot would she have to be to NOT have de-friended this yahoo after she’d already de-friended two OFFICE HOLDERS in her own organization?

      I’m willing to give the benefit of the doubt, but this is just weapons-grade dumbness.

      Also, even if this gets explained away in that magical political way, do we really want someone in a political office who would burn bridges with two fellow office-holders just because they brought up something that RIGHTLY concerned them?


    • Sistah In GA

      When and IF she answers that question, I’ll then and ONLY THEN consider her apology to be REAL!

      But then again, I hope that she does become the leader of the NYR. Does she really think after this fiasco, that she will sway any young Democrats or Liberals (hell, Repubs for the matter), to join her party?

  • Matt

    I think this clears things up.

    Unlike Rusty DePass this woman did not write the comments herself. I’m willing to give her the benefit of the doubt that she did not notice the racist comments on her Facebook page and that she was not responding to those racist comments when she said “you tell em” but rather to the other comments made by the same poster.

    But something else to consider: even if she did read the racist comments in question, it’s not that unlikely that she may not have even known what the term “coon” denotes. I am in my late 20’s and grew up in the South and I have never heard that term used. I would not have known that word but for the movies and television–Mississippi Burning comes to mind.

    Another thing to point out (and this may be a stretch)–my mother’s family is from Louisiana and is part Cajun. In Cajun Country, the term “coon-ass” is sometimes used as slang to describe a Cajun person. Some Cajuns use this word as a term of pride or endearment (esp. those Cajuns still living in and around Acadiana) while some may think it is derogatory or at the least outdated. Just wanted to point this out since Audra Shay is from Louisiana.

    • Rich

      Oh please! She’s nearly 40, she comes from the south, and she might not know that coon is a derogratory word? LOL.

      Do you know how to use Facebook? There was an 8 minute gap between the two posts she is referring to. And why did she delete the two people who called her out on it from her friends list, but not the person who made the racist remarks?

      This is certainly not the behavior of a “leader”. Oh wait, maybe fitting of a leader of the GOP, so I guess she would be in great company!

      • Richie

        Do YOU know how to use Facebook? Real Republican below posted an excellent AND ACCURATE example of Facebook and how the messages can be delayed. Further, if you don’t refresh the page, the new comments won’t post. I use multiple tabs when I’m in Facebook and on my home page if I don’t refresh it, any new posts will not appear until I refresh it. I totally believe Audra Shay for this reason.

        • regina

          “totally believe?”
          did you not read that she de-friended the (2) people who protested the remarks,
          not the people who *wrote* the remarks?

          please stop defending this whacko faction of our (once great) party who have
          destroyed it with their ignorance, lack of foresight, and selfish, narrow-minded
          inability to see that not everyone agrees with their socially conservative – and
          frequently offensive – backwoods, hick mentality.

          i grew up in south florida – and you have NO idea how freely (through the 80’s and
          the mid-90’s) the “n” word “c**n” etc. were used in everyday conversation at
          (places like) the supermarket, and are still used by people who think it’s “okay” to
          do so.

          it is NOT okay, richie, it has NEVER been okay, and it is indefensible coming from
          “friends” of leaders on any public forum, particularly social networking sites.

          PLEASE wake up, richie.

          • Rick

            Regina, If you can show me the South Florida you speak of I will round up the racists myself. If you truly grew up there you know that it is the most racially diverse part of the US. White people are the minority. Really curious as to what part of SF you grew up in. Was it Pahokee, Belle Glade, Delray, Boynton, Carol City, Mangonia Park? Yes, I do pick these for a reason. I am not a racist!! My father was, and I hated it. He and I had a very strained relationship due to my “love for those people”. I also will not tolerate those that use racism to advance themselves. The SF I know has police officers fired and prosecuted for shooting people that are trying to run others down with their car. It has drug dealers walking because they were “profiled” which is why their car was searched to find the 4 bales of pot. THAT is real. RACISM is REAL!! It is all over the world and it cannot end until ALL people stop. That’s right…ALL!! If you are the intelligent person that I believe you are, you will agree.

      • Ray

        She definitely might not have know what “coon” meant. If she wasn’t exposed to that kind of language, it is very possible. My wife who is 40, just found out what “Honky” meant. She works in education in Alabama, and has not been exposed to racial remarks at all really. I have been exposed and don’t care for them at all (military). She came home and asked me what it meant after being called that. She was confused, she said I’m not country (Honk-Tonk). So endearing to be naive. The world is so crass and hateful, we need more people like my wife.

        Yes I am Republican, and I don’t condone racist remarks. If this lady really de-friended the people who called her out, shame on her, but just because it was reported as such doesn’t make it true. Not defending her on this item, because I don’t know the logistics. All I came to say was it is possible not to have heard the racist slur.

        • Andre

          BS and you just played yourself with “My wife is 40 & never heard Honky” yeaaaahhh right .. and I guess you didnt READ the exchange he made comments about removing them (coons ) & they better not come out after dark in the South WTF do you think that means dumbass ? hahaha

    • Craig

      I think it is silly to suggest that this lady did not know that coon is a racist term. I am about her age and am well aware. Even so, I think it’s clear from the context that it is bring used in a deragatory way. I don’t however suggest that this woman is a racist. I don’t know her. I don’t know if she is or not, but I will say from the way that she has handled this ridiculousness that she shows poor judgement. I think that maybe this is the major problem of the RNC today is electing leaders with poor judgement. I think that we should all calm down and stop throwing around words like coon and racist, and I would hope that Audra Shay is able to learn something from this other the idea that her opponents will use this to hurt her in some way. I would hope that she learn what true leadership is about and see how she dropped the ball here!

      • Susan Baragona

        Craig, I agree. I relate to the Democratic and liberal side. However, I believe that the Republican and conservative perspective is much needed in our system. We need a true exchange of ideas, not venomous attacks. I cringe when factions from either side distort views. It prevents a real dialogue, and in the end, hurts us all.

    • Andre

      hahahah u guys are such bullshit liars hahahaha ohhh she didnt know what coon means… yeaaaaahhh right SHE’S FROM THE F’N SOUTH!!!! cmon that’s like saying that a man who shoots up a public gov bulding & for years rails about the government is not a Right Wing Nut now he’s a Far Left Nut. I’m just waiting for the 1st GOPer to say “Black really inslaved Whites” I swear you guys are the best at just bold face lies WOW not knowing what “coon” ment hahahaha Yeah thats gonna fly maybe on FOX or something like that but honest thinking americans are not that f’n dumb !! she got caught being the REAL her now you are all trying to cover it up. I wish I was a fly on the wall in some of your meetings I’m sure coon is not the only term thrown around. Lets see you have a 98% White Young Repbulican Party, maybe some drinks then you see or start talking about Pres Obama ohhh I’m sure no words like N_gger or coon is NEVER used the GOP is pure & sweet hahahaha plus she’s from the SOUTH nuff said

      • Jeremy Rogers

        Your language matches your IQ. Try thinking for yourself for a change Andre.

    • Stephen Krefft

      The apologists are out in full force. Let’s show some accountability for a change rather than merely preaching it. Too long the GOP has dealt with accusations of hypocrisy. Audra, step down please so you don’t prove those critics to be correct. I mean really, did you not think others read your page? Regardless of her true views on race it is apparent she has shown herself to not be intellectually capable of handling the job. I just read her letter to the Young Republicans and her grammar and tense are atrocious as well. Rather than just circling the wagons and supporting our team we should root party members like this out.

    • Ellie

      Anyone who is racially sensitive and educated would be aware that the term ‘coon’ has racist origins…as it does for both African Americans and Cajuns. Ignorance on an issue is not an acceptable argument, particularly for one seeking to represent the voices of so many. Her defense of her actions is weak and simply doesn’t hold up.

    • Disgusted Kat

      Let’s get something very crystal clear here…

      If by some way-out-there chance Ms. Shay did NOT KNOW what the term “coon” meant, Cassie Wallender made it PERFECTLY OBVIOUS by writing ON AUDRA’S FACEBOOK WALL what it meant exactly 1 hour and 46 minutes AFTER Audra’s “You tell em Eric! lol”.

      Here’s what Cassie wrote:

      “Okay, why is this okay? I just looked it up.

      ‘It comes from the term baracoons (a cage), where they used to place Africans, who were waiting to be sent to America to be slaves.’

      THIS IS NOT OKAY. And it’s not funny.”:

      You can read for yourself what Sean L. Conner’s immediate response was, as well as the previous posts left by Eric, Audra, and the others:—avlon-audra-shay-facebook-03_233200859004.jpg

      So how did Audra respond, once she read Cassie’s posting of what the word “coon” meant (in the unlikely event she did not know it’s meaning before she cheered on Eric Piker’s bigotry)?

      SHE DE-FRIENDED CASSIE WALLENDER and SEAN L CONNER!! And she KEPT the blatant racist Eric Piker as a Friend, most likely because he was more closely aligned with her own values and morals.

      If that does not speak volumes about the character of Audra Sigler Shay, then nothing else ever will.

      And the Young Republicans now have the ‘honor’ of claiming her as their Leader!

      Makes me sick.

      This party deserves to wither and die.


  • Todd

    Open letter to Audra Shay


    I was searching the Internet when I came across an article about racial comments you recently made on your Facebook page. As someone with Jewish heritage, and who has two biracial children (white/Latino,) I am thoroughly disgusted by your comments.

    My grandfather fought in World War II against Nazi Germany. He was not only fighting for his country, but against intolerance based on race, religion and ethnicity. As a Jewish American, it took a lot of courage to step on German soil, but he knew he must stand up for what is right. I have thought long and hard about it, and I must also stand up against racial intolerance, by demanding that you resign your position as YRNF Vice Chairman-at-large. I watched scandal after scandal surround your campaign, but this is far too serious for any of us to sit back and tolerate.

    Audra, you have embarrassed our organization, our party, and you have let down your friends by participating in bigotry. This behavior must not, and will not be tolerated.


    Todd Goberville
    Florida National Committeeman

    • Richie

      Did you read the article? SHE didn’t make the racial comments.

    • regina

      thank you todd.

  • Penswoman

    Audra egged the racist on because she sees nothing wrong with what he said. After all, her response is nearly 10 minutes after his second comment, so she had plenty of time to read and understand both comments.

    And, let’s not kid ourselves, a Southerner around 40 years old knows what ‘coon’ means. Nor do I suspect a high school graduate and veteran to be innocent of the meaning of ‘mad’ or ‘Muslim’ even if her correspondent can’t spell.

    I also find it ironic that Audra urges people to respond on her Facebook wall, which suggests she does in fact read it, despite her denial of having read the offensive remarks.

    • Richie

      Maybe republicans need to start crying “racist!” towards the democratic side. They might get heard more.

      • Joe Freedom

        Eric Piker? Is that you?

        GOP cannot move forward, gain support or build its ranks with attitudes like yours.

        • Sistah In GA

          His name is Eric PIKE!

  • Real Republican

    This is clearly a situation that is over blown. While no one condones the ignorant use of this racially divisive language, anyone who posts to their facebook on a blackberry for example- knows that receiving posts can be delayed and that the posting of comments can be delayed. That is one of the dangers of Facebook- the fact that anyone can post on your wall.

    But the record has to be set straight- the “offended parties” discussed on this blog and the other are people working with and supporting the other candidate and her ticket “The Next Level”. For example, what Todd fails to disclose in his letter, is that he has a vested interest in this as his pal and fellow Floridian is a candidate on the Next Level ticket. His email was met with general annoyance and eye-rolling from those who know him within the YRNF.

    The bottom line: this Next Level ticket is losing. Badly. And for good reason.

    Many who support Audra or members of her team, defriended on facebook many of these individuals in this Next Level camp for the simple reason: they are friends to no one! Several of the members of that team have taken to using their facebook statuses to post offensive things about members of the other ticket, have made anonymous videos and emails attacking and slandering Ms. Shay and her team.

    The individuals who were “offended” so greatly by this incident on Ms. Shay’s facebook page include the club chair of Ms. Shay’s opponent and another member from Washington state. This item on this page was even posted by someone featured on the Next Level web page as a supporter.

    So why is Next Level losing? The answer is simple… The Next Level ticket is anchored around a woman who was involved in this:

    Unfortunately, her background is all over the web and on various blogs. Kinda undermines the republicans ability to take a strong stand on ACORN and voter fraud don’t ya think?

    Basically our Next Level candidate’s campaign team has been blasting this “facebook” incident to whatever media contacts they have to try to gain some momentum. Ironically, if you dare discuss Miss Next Level’s personal life, her view on social issues or her conviction- you are deemed out of bounds.

    The posts on this page are actually her supporters. Everyone who knows Audra, knows her to be kind, open and inclusive. It is embarrassing to the YRNF that its members are willing to destroy the republican brand in a desperate attempt to win. Remember when the Republicans number one enemy were democrats?

    • Richie

      I’m with you, buddy.

  • Sally Hampton

    Below is a link to a snapshot of Audra’s facebook page with her friend’s comments (Eric S. Piker) and her response. She couldn’t have missed the racist remarks and the substance of both comments are idiotic – Eric can’t spell ‘their’ and probably wouldn’t know a communist if Lev Trotsky bit him on the leg. But that Audra would respond so positively to such a clueless, uneducated, racist and mean spirited remark speaks volumes. Try to imagine the quality of the kind of young people moving into leadership positions in the Republican Party – DISGUSTING.

  • Real Republican

    Are you clued into this day and age? If you are posting from a Blackberry, which many of us do- you often will miss comments and post out of sync. Also on facebook, the ALWAYS shorten a comment string- such that you have to click- “read more” to read a full strand. So I hate to knock you off your high horse, but there is no way you can say she definitely saw anything.

    I suspect one of the following, you are a friend of Miss Next Level and are trying to keep generating interest in this dead story. Or that you have no familiarity with facebook or technology.

    If someone is running for a National office, why would they knowingly post such a thing? The answer is they wouldn’t.

    If you would like links to other blogs and media on Miss Next Level, just google her- and you will get an eye full on Ms Shay’s opponent.

    • gracie3131

      For all who say she posted from her blackberry, Facebook denotes with an icon posts that are made remotely. Based on screen captures floating out on the web, her post did not have that icon. Even giving her the benefit of the doubt how come she did not post a “you tell em Cassie!” remark when a friend posted that those comments were not okay?

      Bottom line, racism exists in subtle and not so subtle forms. Even subtle forms can be damaging especially if you have a public profile. If I were in her shoes, I would not have un-friended those who spoke up against this kind of attitude since her released statement seems to be inline with those that she un-friended.

      She’s not wrong to voice her opinions, she can say whatever she likes but she needs to be able to stand by her actions or have actions that warrant conviction. I’d like those defending her actions to at least address the un-friending piece. Some sort of justification to get a better idea would be appreciated.

    • Jackie

      She had hours (by the looks of it at least 9 to 12 hours) to respond to the comment, delete it, or apologize for some idiot posting offensive messages to her wall and she chose not to. The fact that she didn’t de-friend Eric after supposedly “denouncing” his racist statements, speaks even more loudly to her insincerity. She was clearly far more concerned with spin control then she ever was with the offensiveness of those racist remarks.

  • Sonia

    Sorry, but Shay unfriending the two people who criticized the racist comment while keeping the one who made it is all we need to know about her. She got caught being who she is, which isn’t anything the Republican Party needs.

  • Dave

    If Shay is telling the truth, why did she unfriend the people that pointed out the racist language rather than saying one big thank you to them for pointing out something she supposedly hadn’t noticed?

  • LemmingWarrior

    Real Repug, since you are answering for Miss Shay care to answer the question, “Why did Shay unfriend the two people who criticized the racist comment while keeping the one who made it?”. hmmm?

    This whole thing smells like something you’d scrap off your boot.

  • Pingback: That Minority Thing » Blog Archive » More Racial “Fun and Games” with the Republicans()

  • Chris

    Shay, if you can’t use the tools right, don’t use them in politics. This lesson has been learned by so many others that to blame the blackberry or something IS ignorant. And saying ‘You tell ‘em’ about the first comments is nearly as bad, as that old Obama / Osama garbage is inflamatory, wrong, and rejected by legitimate Republicans.

  • MadinAZ

    Ms. Shay says:

    “It is a disgrace that these types of political attacks are taking place and once again, it proves that my opponents will stoop to the lowest levels to steal this election from the jaws of victory. ”

    Yet she has no problem with this comment:

    “obama bin laudin is the new terrorist”

    Even if you believe that she did not see or understand the “coon” comment, she is disingenuous in saying that it is her opponents who “stoop to the lowest levels.”

    • Sistah In GA

      You betcha!

  • 84GCock

    I don’t know you well enough to know if you are sincere or not. Not all republicans are racists, but if you are a racists you are republican.

    As an African American that grew up an in the South I do know this, part of the republican coalition is the hate vote (aka the Dixiecrats). While they are dying off many are still around.

    Your party is owned and operated by corporations, many of whom don’t even pay taxes in this country. The republican agenda is a corporate one, where they use racism, abortion, guns and gays to get the single issue voter to the polls all while never delivering on any of these explosive social issues. The only thing you deliver on is Laze Fare economics, outsourcing of jobs, destruction of the environment, poison toys, wage destruction and systematic elimination of the middle class.

    As the racists elements of the South fade, so will the Republican party as we know it; it’s happening right before our very eyes.

    I close with this, I hope the reasonable people in your party reject hate and reject corporatism and truly start to work for the American people.

  • Paw-Paw

    I know crawfishin’ when I hear it.

    This sort of disgusting racism is too prevalent in the southern GOP. Just go to an LSU tailgate and keep your ears open.

    She’s lying – she obviously had read both comments. They were adjacent to each other.

    • Jimmy Doors




      • Christopher

        Is there really any need to bring someone’s looks in to this?

        If you really are against her for reasons relating to her actions or her stance then that’s credible, but her looks have no place in any debate.

        Not only is it a sexist double-standard that is rarely if ever used on men, it indicates that you have nothing to actually add to the debate.

        I suspect that instead of actually being against her you are either an internet troll or an agent provocateur trying to derail an actual debate on her tolerance of racism and hackneyed attempts to cover up her complicity into a discussion of meaningless concepts like her physical appearance.

        • Jimmy Doors


          I THOUGHT SO !!

          • Christopher

            Where did I say that? Where did anyone say that?

            And the constant caps-lock isn’t helping your case.

            You’re an obvious troll.

      • Cassie Wallender

        I agree, let’s keep un-relevant topics out of the conversation. The facts speak loudly enough for themselves. Please, no need for sexism.

        • Jimmy Doors