After Racial Gaffe, Senator George Allen Declines an Award From the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund

The Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund, a nonprofit group representing 47 state-operated historically black colleges and universities, planned to honor GOP Senator George Allen with its 2006 Community Leadership Award recognizing the legislator’s support for historically black colleges and universities.

But then Senator Allen referred to a campaign aide of his opponent for the Virginia U.S. Senate seat as “Macaca.” The term refers to a particular genus of monkey. The campaign aide who Senator Allen was referring to is of Indian descent.

Allen voluntarily decided not to accept the honor when it was revealed that several potential donors to the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund threatened to withhold money from the organization if Allen was given the award.