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Donald A. Carson, Love in Hard Places p.94.

Moreover, some leaders on both sides of any racial divide love to play the race card to keep themselves in power.

Additional definitions for 'play the race card':

play the race cardMark Fuhrman, Murder in Brentwood p.153.
play the race cardTo assert that race or racism is responsible for a course of events, especially when race is not of particular significance to the issue in question; to attempt to inspire a particular reaction by raising the issue of race.
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